Dear Friend of the World Forestry Center, 

After a great deal of thought, I have made the difficult decision that now is the right time for me to transition out of my role as Executive Director. 

The last three years have been pivotal for the World Forestry Center. We have reorganized our board, restructured many of our operational systems, adjusted our programs, and redefined our mission, charting a course for increased engagement in our community. We've also made more than $500K in facilities improvements to our campus with another $320K scheduled for the next year. 

Our board has identified a direction that I think appropriately responds to our community’s need for robust, diverse voices to come together to work on the toughest issues facing forestry. The World Forestry Center is poised to expand its convening activities, and to fulfill this mandate, I believe we will be best served with new leadership. I’ll be stepping down at the end of May. 

Given our emphasis to hold new conferences and gatherings, the board leadership felt that Sara Wu, a 24-year veteran with the World Forest Institute and developer of the Who Will Own the Forest conference, would be best positioned to work as the Interim Executive Director while the board identifies the next permanent Executive Director, a process that could take up to six months. Sara’s long history with the organization and her competent leadership of WFI make her an excellent choice for this role. She will be a strong advisor to the board as they work on developing the convening concept. 

I would like to thank you for supporting the center as we make these changes. Now more than ever, the world needs healthy forests. Sustainable forestry is key to our future and the World Forestry Center will play a key role in helping the next generation understand and appreciate the role of forestry in our changing world.

Feel free to contact me if you have questions at

Thank you, 

-Eric Vines