Northeast Region Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy banner with a graphic of the 20 states of the Northeast and Midwest and National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy logo.
The Northeast Regional Strategy Committee (NE RSC) provides executive leadership, coordination, and guidance to carry out the Northeast Regional Action Plan while providing a forum for members to guide strategic direction for fire and land management activities. The NE RSC continues to collaboratively recognize, support, and help with National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy goals and implementation efforts.

Brad Simpkins, New Hampshire State Forester
In This Issue
Northeast Region Cohesive Strategy Key Contacts


Chief Fire Warden

Mass. Dept. of Conservation and Recreation


Maureen Brooks


U.S. Forest Service Northeastern Area S&PF


Larry Mastic

Coordinator, Northeast Region

Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy

Important Links

Forest Fire Compacts

Quick Links

Science and Joint Fire Science Consortiums & Exchanges

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April 2018

New Hampshire State Forester: "If there is a problem, tackle it head on"
National Association of State Foresters logo.

Head and shoulders picture of a man.
Brad Simpkins. (Courtesy photo by NAASF)

Editor's Note: Brad Simpkins is the current President of the Northeastern Area Association of State Foresters (NAASF) and served as Chair of the Northeast Regional Strategy Committee from its inception until the fall of 2016.

Listen to a Leadership Nature podcast featuring Brad Simpkins in which he discusses the beautiful and diverse wildlands of New Hampshire, how leadership is different at the State Forester level, and why he loves working with the next generation of professionals.

Source: NASF Weekly Newsletter, April 6, 2018

Megan's Corner - April 2018
LANDFIRE logo and the text In the Northeast.
  • Northeast region LANDFIRE webinar: What? LANDFIRE is hosting a webinar focused only on Northeast applications? YES, and there will be more. On May 1st, Randy Swaty from The Nature Conservancy's LANDFIRE team will be digging into examples of on-the-ground fuels and fire return interval-related applications of LANDFIRE in Michigan (with my help, of course!). Check out the webinar details and mark your calendar.
  • IFTDSS webinars: The  Interagency Fuel Treatment Decision Support System (IFTDSS) relies on LANDFIRE data. Using this extremely user-friendly system, you can edit aspects of any landscape, build a landscape file, and run fire behavior modeling to evaluate treatment scenarios (plus more features coming soon) without being a GIS or modeling expert. If you've missed the IFTDSS webinar series, recordings of past webinars are available.
  • Data call: The official deadline has passed for submitting plot and disturbance data to be used in the Remap (March 31), but LANDFIRE will continue to accept and use data from our region if possible. See my post from last month on more detail on that. I'm also working on a map of some of the data submissions I've been involved with in the past year (see below). If your state is blank, it does not necessarily mean that no data has been submitted. To find out what data LANDFIRE has compiled from data contributions and what data has been collected from agency databases, see "Previous Contributions" at
Map of the Northeast and Midwest states showing those states that have data submitted to a database. NE LANDFIRE Contact:

Second Annual Cohesive Strategy Workshop Held in Reno, NV
Second Annual National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy Workshop logo.
The most recent National Cohesive Strategy Workshop was a great success with more than 170 attendees (almost double last year's attendance) from a variety of Federal, State, local, tribal, and nonprofit organizations and agencies. The International Association of Wildland Fire presented the workshop in partnership with the Wildland Fire Leadership Council and the West, Southeast, and Northeast Regional Strategic Committees (RSCs).

The Northeast (NE) RSC was ably represented by Dave Celino, NE RSC Chair; Maureen Brooks, NE RSC Vice-Chair; and Tom Fielden, The Nature Conservancy (Missouri), Land Stewardship and Prescribed Fire Manager and NE RSC member.

A man gives a presentation to people in a room.
Dave Celino, Massachusetts Chief Fire Warden and Northeast RSC Chair, presents an overview of Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy efforts in the Northeast. (Courtesy photo by Larry Mastic)

New Jersey Takes a Unique Approach to Firewise USA TM  and Wildfire Risk Reduction
NFPA and Firewise USA logos.
Tom Welle, Denver Field Office Manager, NFPA

April 4, 2018

Aerial view of trees and the ocean.
Warren Grove Gunnery Range. (Courtesy photo by Tom Welle)

Being born and raised in the West, I would never have expected to see the vast amount of rural forested area that I witnessed, of all places, in New Jersey. But there it was, miles of trees, with developments nestled within it for as far as the eye could see. This was the Pine Barrens. And for the last several years, it has been high on the national list of places that can burn, and burn big.

The last time it did was May of 2007. The Warren Grove Gunnery Range sits within the Pinelands, and an Air National Guard F-16 ignited a 14,000-acre wildfire that forced the evacuation of 6,000 people and burned several homes. A 2016 article in Rolling Stone magazine ( "Will America's Worst Wildfire Disaster Happen in New Jersey?") caught many folks off guard with most of the news being western wildfire concerns. Yet, this 1.1 million-acre tract of trees is home to some 500,000 people and is still growing. And it can burn big.

Secretary Perdue Applauds Fire Funding Fix in Omnibus
USDA logo with the text U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Press Release (No. 0064.18)

Contact: USDA Press

(Washington, D.C., March 23, 2018) ---   U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today expressed his appreciation for the work of Congress to find a bipartisan fix for the way the U.S. Forest Service is funded for fighting wildfires. Secretary Perdue had advocated for the change since taking office in April 2017. Congress included the solution in the FY 2018 Omnibus Spending Package, which has been signed into law by President Donald J. Trump.

"The fire funding fix, which has been sought for decades, is an important inclusion in the omnibus spending bill and I commend Congress for addressing the issue," said Secretary Perdue. "Improving the way we fund wildfire suppression will help us better manage our forests. If we ensure that we have adequate resources for forest management, we can mitigate the frequency of wildfires and severity of future fire seasons. I thank Congressional leaders, with whom I've frequently discussed this issue."

Read the full USDA press release.

Pope County Firefighters Offer Free Wildfire Home Risk Assessments to Homeowners
Shawnee Resource Conservation and Development logo and U.S. Forest Service shield. March 13, 2018
Media Contacts: Jody Shimp or Tracy Fidler
HARRISBURG, IL (MARCH 12, 2018) ---   Pope County firefighters are partnering with Shawnee National Forest to assess the risks of wildfire to Pope County homes, thanks to a grant from the local non-profit Shawnee Resource, Conservation & Development Area.

"Our primary goal is to keep Pope County homeowners safe, and we believe the message of preparing early and making their homes safe from wildfire will help us achieve that goal,'' said Josh Light, Captain, Rural Pope County Fire Protection District. "If we identify risks through an assessment, we then want to provide the homeowner with options to reduce that risk. Most times, it's a simple fix like making sure leaves don't accumulate under your home or deck."

Read the full wildfire home risk assessments news release .

NFPA Launches First of its Kind Wildfire Certification
National Fire Protection Association and Xchange combined logos. 
National Fire Protection Association Certified Wildfire Mitigation Specialist logo. Blog Post created by  Tom Welle

February 26, 2018

Although there are many practitioners working in the field with titles such as Wildland/Urban Interface Specialist, Wildfire Mitigation Specialist, Wildfire Prevention officer, etc., there is no certification that standardizes some body of knowledge, gives professional credibility and validates the specialized talent in this area...until now.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has launched a new certification that is the first of its kind nationally. The Certified Wildfire Mitigation Specialist, (CWMS), launched Feb. 1, 2018 to help give those working in wildfire risk reduction and preparedness national recognition and an initial standard for certification.

Read the full wildfire certification blog post.

Put Your Wildfire Community Preparedness Day Project on the Map
National Fire Protection Association and Xchange combined logos. 
Blog Post created by  Faith Berry

March 12, 2018
Banner advertising Wildfire Preparedness Day on May 5 2018.

Share with others across the nation what you are doing on Wildfire Community Preparedness Day. You and your community can not only share with others in your neighborhood what you are doing and encourage others to participate, but also connect with other communities participating on the day from across the nation.

It is easy to enter your information and a brief description about how you are a part of something big! Once you submit your information, you will see your community on the Prep Day Map!

It is easy to get together and commit a couple of hours, or the entire day, and watch as your actions positively contribute to reducing your wildfire risk. Challenge your family, friends, relatives, faith based group, or youth organization to develop a project and join others throughout the nation in making changes that make a difference.

Conferences, Meetings, and Training Opportunities

Conferences and Meetings


May 1, 2018 (12:30 ET, 11:30 CT)
Webinar presented by Randy Swaty, Ecologist, The Nature Conservancy LANDFIRE Team
Click on link above for connection info


The Northeast Regional Strategy Committee (NE RSC) delivers articles and stories each month that demonstrate the collaborative efforts of agencies, organizations and communities supporting and promoting the three goals of the Cohesive Strategy: Restoring Resilient Landscapes, Creating Fire Adapted Communities and Responding to Wildfire. 


This news update is our primary communication tool with our partners and the public. Looking for more Northeast Region Cohesive Strategy information or past published news update issues? Visit this Web site.


Does your agency, organization, or community have a project or event you'd like to see featured in the NE RSC News Update? 


Tell us about it! Just contact  Larry Mastic .
Northeastern Area State & Private Forestry | 603-953-3294 | |
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