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HomeState & Private Forestry News
November 2018
From the Director
Kathleen Atkinson,
Area Director
(Forest Service photo)


Leadership Note

Last week [week of October 29] was our Regional and Area Leadership Team meeting here in Milwaukee, and throughout our four days we had a number of important conversations, passed on national expectations, and discussed Regional and Area issues for the coming year. As the Region and Area continue to come together as one unit, one of our first decisions involves a name change for the "RLT." To better reflect the overall mission of the leadership team, we agreed to call this group the "Regional & Area Leadership Team," or RALT.

Although the remainder of the meeting involved a number of varied discussions, the overarching theme emphasized throughout the week was "Shared Stewardship." Considering the vast majority of forested lands in the East are non-Federal lands, our focus on "Caring for the land and serving people" cannot stop at our national forest borders. Every aspect of our work is in some way connected to the lands and communities beyond our boundaries. With that recognition in mind, the RALT spent considerable time at the beginning of the week, and with each topic, discussing what shared stewardship looks like in the East. We already have many great examples of working across all lands, and sharing responsibility for forest health in all ownerships. As we look to the future, those projects and relationships will form the foundation for the changes we must make to remain relevant and effective in our communities, and in the execution of our mission. You will continue to hear more about this in the future, but in the meantime I encourage you to talk with your line officers about shared stewardship, and take a moment to seek a broader perspective on your own work than you might have in the past.

--- Kathleen Atkinson,
  Regional Forester and Northeastern Area Director
Michigan Forest Stewardship Program Reaches 1 Million Acres

By Mike Smalligan, Michigan Department of Natural Resources Forest Stewardship Coordinator

A woman and a man pose for a picture on a wooded property while holding forest stewardship and tree farm signs.
Mrs. and Mr. Baker proudly exhibit the signs they received at the Michigan Forest Association celebration. (Courtesy photo by Mike Smalligan, Michigan DNR)

Michigan achieved a milestone on August 23 when five families completed their Forest Stewardship Plans. With this accomplishment Michigan reached 1 million acres of private woodlands under management with Forest Stewardship Plans. All five landowners and their foresters were recognized with a $500 gift from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and U.S. Forest Service at the annual celebration of the Michigan Forest Association and Michigan Tree Farm System on September 14 in Naubinway, MI.

"The DNR is very proud to assist 6,000 landowners and several hundred foresters over the past 28 years as they care for their privately owned woods," said Mike Smalligan, the DNR's Forest Stewardship Coordinator.

"Family forests make up 9 million acres, or 45 percent, of Michigan's 20 million acres of forests, so it is very important for the DNR to help landowners," he said. "There are 400,000 forest owners in Michigan, so we still have a ways to go." Read the full Michigan Forest Stewardship article.
Northeastern Area Seeks Applications for Two Funding Opportunities

The FY 2019 Cohesive Fire Strategy Request for Applications is designed to support and carry out the goals of the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy across the Midwestern and Northeastern States. These national goals include restoring and maintaining landscapes, creating fire-adapted communities, and improving wildfire response. Closing date for applications is December 21, 2018. Apply through ; search for Opportunity Number USDA-FS-2019-WRR-WR. View more information on this Northeastern Area grants website.

The FY 2019 U.S. Forest Service Wood Innovations Program seeks to substantially expand and accelerate wood products markets and wood energy markets throughout the United States to support forest management needs on National Forest System and other forest lands. Closing date is January 23, 2019. View more information on this Northeastern Area grants website. Read more about both of these grant opportunities.

Shared Stewardship Success in Wisconsin Sets a High Bar

Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Sells Most Timber For Harvest Since Early 1990s
State And Federal Partnership Increasing Harvests on National Forest Land
By Danielle Kaeding, Wisconsin Public Radio News

November 19, 2018
Timber sales on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest have increased for the sixth year in a row. The forest sold 128.7 million board feet of timber this past fiscal year.
Forest Supervisor Paul Strong said that's the most timber sold on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest since the early 1990s. The forest has been able to sell more stands of timber for harvest through an agreement with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources under the Good Neighbor Authority, which allows the state to conduct management of national forest land.
"They've been a steady partner delivering their share of this program for the last three years," Strong said.
The state sold 30.7 million board feet under the agreement, said Jeffrey Olsen, national forest specialist in the Good Neighbor Authority program with the DNR.
"It adds to the economy of the state of Wisconsin because it's allowing more wood to come on the markets and help the wood product manufacturers in Wisconsin having more supply available to them," said Olsen.
Read the full Wisconsin Public Radio article.
Keeping Private Forest Land in the Chesapeake: New Way to Quantify Clean Water Benefits

By Sally Claggett, U.S. Forest Service, Northeastern Area State and Private Forestry

Aerial view of a landscape with a mix of water and rural areas and development.
Retaining forested cover is a critical component of the continued recovery of the Chesapeake Bay. (Courtesy photo by Matt Rath/Chesapeake Bay Program)

Forests are the best land cover for clean water, but every day, the Chesapeake Bay watershed loses approximately 100 acres of forests to development

To reverse this trend, policies and practices that keep forests as forests are now credited toward clean water goals throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed. While the importance of trees has long been recognized by the Chesapeake Bay Program , only recently has the continued existence of all forests as reportable, trackable best management practices ( BMPs) been overtly credited. After years of collaboration between States and Federal agencies (e.g., Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Geological Survey, and U.S. Forest Service), the Chesapeake Bay leadership committee agreed to a landmark decision, the first of its kind: conservation practices, such as zoning and easements, that maintain beneficial land cover, especially private forests, into the future will be credited toward meeting the Bay's regulated water quality goals. Read the entire article on quantifying clean water benefits in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
Organization Honored with Award for Ensuring Detroit Kids Have Opportunities to Get Outdoors
Outdoors Alliance for Kids logo.

Detroit Outdoors was selected by the Outdoors Alliance for Kids (OAK) and its 100 member organizations to receive an "OAK Leaf Award" for spearheading a powerful collaborative to ensure the kids of Detroit have opportunities to get outdoors. A reception and awards ceremony was held in Washington, DC, on November 13.

"The Detroit Outdoors project work to connect children, youth, and families with the outdoors has been tremendous. We are especially grateful for your work to bring together partners, including the city of Detroit, Detroit Parks and Recreation, Sierra Club, YMCA, REI, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, National Park Service, and the Kresge Foundation to reopen Scout Hollow, bringing life to the Rouge City Park and reopening the city's only campground, providing programming to the kids of Detroit,'' said Jackie Ostfeld, OAK Founder and Chair.

OAK is a national strategic partnership of 100 organizations from diverse sectors with a common interest in connecting children, youth, and families with the outdoors. OAK's members are brought together by the belief that the wellness of current and future generations, the health of our planet and communities, and the economy of the future depend on humans having a personal, direct, and life-long relationship with nature and the outdoors.

Delaware Hosts Mid-Atlantic Cooperative Forest Health Meeting

By Danielle Martin, U.S. Forest Service, Northeastern Area State and Private Forestry
View of a waterway surrounded by marsh plants.
A marsh/barrier beach project restored habitat for horseshoe crabs, sea turtles, and nesting birds at the Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge. (U.S. Forest Service photo by Danielle Martin)

The 2018 Mid-Atlantic Cooperative Forest Health Meeting was hosted by the Delaware State Forest Service at the Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Delaware. All state cooperators provided a summary and review of their programs, along with each State lead from the Morgantown Field office. The group discussed current and future forest health projects as well as programmatic needs. Read more about the cooperators meeting .
Northeast Silviculture Institute Training Materials Now Available Online

Ten days' worth of materials from the Northeast Silviculture Institute for Foresters training sessions is now available online for anyone, not just foresters. Every lecture and field stop in 2017 was filmed. The dozens of resulting videos and backing materials are now available for viewing in the comfort of your own home or office. Check out the list of courses available .
Grant Opportunity

The U.S. Forest Service launched the Citizen Science Competitive Funding Program (CitSci Fund) in 2017. Goals include expanding capacity for the collection and analysis of data to advance science and land management, providing opportunities for meaningful participation by the public in agency activities, strengthening partnerships to address mutually beneficial outcomes and leverage resources, and sharing learning by participating in communities of practice. Closing date is January 9, 2019. View more information.

Editor's Note

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