December 2017

What will 2018 bring the forest sector?

As we wind up 2017, it's fair to ask what the new year might bring to Oregon's forest sector.
This year brought new rules that widened riparian areas on coastal streams identified as salmon, steelhead and bull trout streams. This caused OFRI to revamp its popular Oregon Forest Protection Laws - An Illustrated Manual, which we will re-publish in early 2018.
This year also brought extensive wildfire to the state, scorching 710,000 acres of forest and rangeland, forcing evacuations, cancelling cultural and social events, and closing highways. Thick smoke sent people indoors for days and caused a record number of school athletic events to either cancel or postpone. Some schools closed and sent kids home.
In early 2018, OFRI will publish a special report on the economic and social effects of the 2017 wildfire season.
This past October, OFRI led state policymakers on a tour of mass timber buildings in Portland. With the advent of innovative engineered wood products such as cross-laminated timber, an increasing number of architects and designers are choosing to build with wood.
In 2018, expect to see construction begin on the 12-story all-wood structure called Framework in Portland's Pearl District. And in March, for the third time Portland will host the International Mass Timber Conference, burnishing the city's and the state's reputation as the nation's epicenter of mass timber innovation and construction.
Next year will also mark my 10th year as executive director, and I've told the OFRI board of directors that I plan to retire. OFRI will begin a search in February, and a new ED will be on board in July. There'll be a brief transition period, and I will step down July 31.
All in all, a year of excitement and change. 

For the forest,

Paul Barnum
Executive Director

Christmas in the Garden concludes Dec. 31

The Rediscovery Forest inside The Oregon Garden has been transformed into a holiday wonderland with thousands of twinkling lights for the annual Christmas in the Garden festival.
This year's festival runs through Dec. 31 at The Oregon Garden, 879 W. Main St., Silverton. Much of the festivities are centered in the Rediscovery Forest, a 15-acre forest in the garden that OFRI actively manages for educational purposes.
OFRI is a co-sponsor of Christmas in the Garden, which features holiday decorations using more than 600,000 lights. In addition to the light displays, the festival includes a traditional German Christmas market, photos with Santa, live music, ice skating and snowless tubing, among other activities.
More information about event hours and ticket prices is available on The Oregon Garden website

OFRI board welcomes new members

Oregon State Forester Peter Daugherty has appointed two new members to the OFRI board of directors, and reappointed a current member for a second three-year term.
Jerry Anderson, the northwest Oregon region manager for Boston, Mass.-based Hancock Forest Management, and Casey Roscoe, senior vice president of public relations with Eugene-based Seneca Family of Companies, will officially join the OFRI board on Jan. 1, 2018. At the same time, Jennifer Phillippi, who co-manages her family's Cave Junction-based forestland business, Perpetua Forests Company, will start her second board term.
Roscoe and Anderson are replacing outgoing OFRI board members Dave Furtwangler, the president of Cascade Timber Consulting, and Jim Hunt, an area manager for Campbell Global LLC, both of whose terms expired.
Anderson is responsible for all operations on 216,000 acres of forestland managed by Hancock Forest Management. Before his current position, he was chief area forester for Boise Cascade, where he primarily focused on timber harvest planning and engineering. Anderson is a licensed professional engineer and Society of American Foresters certified forester.
Before joining Seneca, which her grandfather founded in 1954, Roscoe worked in media and marketing. Her career includes stints at the Associated Press, Comcast and The Washington Post, where she served as one of the newspaper's senior advertising account executives. At Seneca, Roscoe manages the company's public affairs and community outreach efforts, including social media such as Seneca's Facebook page. She has earned positive press coverage of the company and produced a virtual reality video about sustainable forest practices.

The 13-member OFRI board includes representatives of forest products producers of varying size that pay harvest taxes to support OFRI's programs. The board also contains one member representing small woodland owners and one representing forest-sector employees. Ex officio members include a public representative and the dean of the Oregon State University College of Forestry.

Teacher workshop focuses on fire

About 50 high school teachers attended an OFRI educator workshop in Silverton that focused on ways to teach high school students about wildfires.
The full-day "Fire in Oregon's Forests" workshop in the Natural Resources Education Center at The Oregon Garden featured presentations on fire prevention and the complex issues related to fires and forests. It also offered information on fire-related curriculum and other educational resources, including the new Oregon State University Forestry & Natural Resources Extension's Fire Science Core Curriculum.
Among the speakers at the workshop were representatives from the Oregon State Fire Marshal and the Bend-based community organization Project Wildfire, which works to prevent deaths, injuries, property loss and environmental damage resulting from wildfires. The workshop also included a presentation about career opportunities in firefighting from Miller Timber Services, a Philomath-based company that hires firefighters for its wildfire suppression crews.
"Last summer's fires, the prolonged smoke, and the controversy regarding the involvement of high school students in the Eagle Creek Fire in the Columbia River Gorge, made the fire theme especially timely," says OFRI Senior Manager of Forestry Education Julie Woodward, who organized the workshop. "We had a great discussion, and the teachers came away with some good strategies for teaching about fire prevention and fire in Oregon's forests."

OSU honors OFRI's $1M donation

Since its founding in 1991, OFRI has donated a cumulative total of $1 million on behalf of forest-sector ratepayers to the Oregon State University Foundation for forestry education, qualifying the Institute for induction into the foundation's Milton Harris Society.
OFRI was among 15 new Harris Society members honored for their contributions to the university last month at the 2017 President's Dinner. OFRI Executive Director Paul Barnum and Tyler Freres, vice chairman of the OFRI board, attended the Nov. 16 dinner at the Portland Art Museum and accepted a plaque from OSU President Edward J. Ray and OSU Foundation President and CEO J. Michael Goodwin.
The Harris Society is named for Milton Harris, a 1926 OSU graduate and noted chemist who gave the first $1 million gift to the university. Donors who are inducted into this society are honored for following his style of generosity by making cumulative gifts, pledges and estate gifts at the $1 million, $5 million and $10 million levels. As one of these donors, OFRI will be recognized on the OSU Legacy Wall in the Memorial Union on the university's Corvallis campus.
"OFRI has long had a close connection with the OSU College of Forestry, and the college's dean serves on our board," Barnum says. "We're honored to become members of the Harris Society and look forward to many more years of partnering with the university to serve our mission of advancing public understanding of Oregon's forests, forest management and forest products."

Video touts many benefits of forests

A new animated video produced by the North American Forest Partnership explores the many ways forests are helping us address social challenges.
The three-minute whiteboard animation, How Forests Make Our Lives Better, discusses how trees and forests enhance the places where we live, work and play, in ways such as filtering drinking water, cleaning the air, and providing jobs and a variety of forest products.
The North American Forest Partnership, an organization with more than 100 members representing all segments of the North American forest community, debuted the video at a conference it hosted last month in Portland. The conference, "From Communications to Engagement," focused on ways the forest sector can better communicate and engage with the public. It was attended by more than 130 people representing forest-related businesses, nonprofit organizations, conservation groups, and state and federal agencies from across the United States and Canada. 

Korean foresters tour Rediscovery Forest

A group of forest researchers from South Korea made a stop at The Oregon Garden in Silverton earlier this month to meet with OFRI staff and tour the Rediscovery Forest.
The foresters from the Jeonnam Forest Resources Institute, which does research and education about forests in South Korea, traveled to Oregon to learn about sustainable forestry practices, outreach and education in the state. OFRI Senior Manager of Forestry Education Julie Woodward, together with Director of K-12 Education Programs Norie Dimeo-Ediger and Environmental Educator Rikki Heath, hosted the group at The Oregon Garden, offering insights on OFRI's educational programs.
During their visit, the Korean foresters presented OFRI with a plaque recognizing its partnership with the Jeonnam Forest Resources Institute and a shared commitment to educating about sustainable forestry. 

Oregon Forest Resources Institute · 
The Oregon Legislature created the Oregon Forest Resources Institute in 1991 to advance public understanding of forests, forest management and forest products and to encourage sound forestry through landowner education. A 13-member board of directors governs OFRI. It is funded by a portion of the forest products harvest tax.
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Copyright © 2017, Oregon Forest Resources Institute. All Rights Reserved.

On the blog 
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Forest field program serves 2,560

The Oregon Garden Natural Resources Education Program, which offers free hands-on field trips for fourth- through sixth-grade students to learn about forests and natural resources, served 2,650 students during its fall season.
The OFRI program is taking a break for the winter, but will resume again in the spring. It offers educational field trips to The Oregon Garden and its Rediscovery Forest, where students participate in activities to learn about topics such as forest ecology, wildlife habitat, and plant and animal adaptations.
For more information, or to sign up a school group for a spring field trip, go to

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 Paul Barnum stars in podcast
OFRI Executive Director Paul Barnum is featured in a new episode of "Talk in the Woods," a podcast from the North American Forest Partnership (NAFP) that explores issues related to the North American forest sector.
In the episode, Barnum has a conversation with NAFP Executive Director Will Novy-Hildesley about OFRI's work educating the public, K-12 teachers and students, forest landowners, and architects, engineers and contractors about forests and forest products. The conversation also delves into Barnum's own personal appreciation for Oregon's forests and the forest sector.
The new episode, "A Commitment to the Land with Paul Barnum," can be listened to on NAFP's website or on iTunes.

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Mass Timber Conference returns  

The International Mass Timber Conference returns to Portland on March 20-22, 2018.

The 2018 conference will again be held at the Oregon Convention Center, 777 NE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., and is set to feature more than 70 speakers, 62 exhibitors and hundreds of mass timber experts hailing from more than 20 countries. It will be the conference's third visit to Portland.

In addition to speakers, breakout sessions and an exhibit hall, the conference will include two tours of Oregon mass timber buildings organized by OFRI Director of Forest Products Timm Locke.

For more information and to register for the conference, visit the event website.

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New video celebrates Habitat build
After less-than-ideal living situations, including sharing a cramped apartment with another family, a Springfield mother and daughter recently became homeowners thanks to a partnership between Habitat for Humanity and the Oregon forest products industry. A new OFRI-produced video tells their story. 
The Build a House - Frame a Future video highlights the forest sector's contributions to the Springfield/Eugene Habitat for Humanity project sponsored by the American Forest Resource Council

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Get Out:
Crater Lake

Crater Lake National Park is now offering its popular ranger-guided snowshoe walks.
The free two-hour walks will be offered every Saturday and Sunday, and most holidays, through April 29. Daily walks will be offered from Dec. 16 through Jan. 1.
Snowshoes are provided, and participants are led on an off-trail exploration through the forests and meadows along the rim of Crater Lake.
For more information and to sign up for a snowshoe walk, call the park's visitor center at 541-594-3100.