A Message from Our Executive Director

Eric Vines

Oregon is famous for its rain. But the long, dry summer left me wondering if perhaps the rain had forsaken our state. I need not have worried. In the past week, the rains have been epic, leaving swollen rivers and soggy mittens.
Last Saturday, my wife and I went to an event that featured more than 200 tubas playing Christmas carols. It was outside and the rains were heavy. I thought the crowd would be sparse, but Pioneer Square in downtown Portland was packed with people sporting umbrellas and rain jackets, happily singing along while the rain poured down.
Abundant rains grow our trees, power our electricity, and fill our salmon-bearing streams. In that moment, it felt appropriate to stand in a downpour and sing along with the deep brass bellowing of the tubas...not just in celebration of the season, but also in celebration of the abundance that our natural environment provides.
In this season of love and joy, I hope you'll consider helping the World Forestry Center end the year on a solid financial footing. We are re-inventing how we deliver impact to the world and we can't do it without you.   
To inspire you, David Hampton has generously offered to match any amount we raise before December 31, 2015, up to $25,000. You can help us get a 100% return on your investment immediately. That's about 99.9% better than you get in a money market fund!  Click here to make an online donation. 
Whether you give to the World Forestry Center or to another worthwhile organization in your community, we hope you have a safe, happy holiday season filled with warmth, wood, and wonder. Enjoy your trees and your forests, growing symbols of hope for a wonderful future.

Eric Vines
Executive Director  
Leadership Hall Spotlight
James E. Brown

For nearly 17 years Jim Brown served as Oregon's State Forester. It was in that capacity, from 1986 to 2003, that he developed a strong case for sustainability as fundamental to the art and science of managing forests. More specifically, he came to insist that it was only through recognizing the interdependence of social, economic, and environmental benefits that the future of forests could be ensured.
Jim got started early. Born into a Puget Sound forest products family in 1940, he wrote a career interest paper in the ninth grade that convinced him to follow in his uncle's footsteps and become a forester. This decision led him to the University of Washington and Tau Phi Delta, known as the forestry frat. There, a favorite professor encouraged him to apply to Yale's graduate level School of Forestry--the place where big thinkers wrote the textbooks used in all the other forestry schools. This influential professor also imparted to Jim the words of wisdom that guided his subsequent career choices for several decades: "Get out of the Northwest and go see what another guy calls a tree."  So off he went to New Haven, earned his master's degree, and gained a wealth of experience traveling across the country as part of his field studies and his early career steps.

In 1965 Jim returned to Coos Bay, Oregon, and began work as an entry-level forester, eventually serving as  the   reforestation forester in Astoria, before moving to a staff job in Salem.  Then in 1977 he was assigned to help draft some forest-related legislation. After that, he was hooked. He shifted from wanting to be a field forester to realizing that policy and politics is where the action is. With that in mind, he worked his way into the state's top forestry job and began to change the model and methods of involvement that the Department of Forestry would use in working with the Oregon legislature. He says it took him seven years to really figure out what the state forester job was all about and to find the direction he wanted to take. He came to the conclusion that he just needed to learn what the public interest really was and that the way to determine that was through public debate. So he instituted a series of programs to get him out into local communities and in touch with what Oregonians and their legislative leaders were thinking and worrying about. This, in concert with the 1992 United Nations' Earth Summit report known as the "Montreal Process," heralded the beginning of sustainable forestry management in Oregon through the measurement of forest values and forest change. Jim took this message and means across our nation and abroad, ultimately shifting the paradigm of resource management and policy into the 21st Century and ushering sustainability from merely being a provocative concept into a widely held imperative.
After he retired from his State Forester position, Jim was tagged to serve as policy advisor to then-Governor Ted Kulongoski coordinating policy for 14 state natural resource agencies. He has also served as president of the National Association of State Foresters and as a member of the National Commission on Science for Sustainable Forestry, the Tillamook Forest Heritage Trust, and the World Forestry Center board. He continues being active and optimistic about statewide natural resource issues and has a busy forest policy consulting business. For the future, he envisions a broadening of partnerships among foresters and forest policy makers to include the conservation community, green energy interests, urban audiences, and community leaders. Jim Brown, still seeking to "hear what another guy calls a tree," is a man who both loves trees and believes that conversation matters.

World Forest Institute Alumni Updates
Miguel Sanchez in his traditional Bolivian Carnival dance costume with his wife.
Miguel Sanchez, our Bolivian Fellow from earlier this year, has landed a new job! He recently wrote this to us: " I wanted to share with you that thanks to my experience with WFI I was able to get a job as the Forest Nursery Specialist at the Bolivian National Forest Development Fund . This organization is a decentralized public entity responsible for financing programs and projects aimed at sustainable and integrated forest development in Bolivia." He went on to say that thanks to his experience at WFI he feels fully prepared to take on this new role. We are so proud of Miguel and love to see such clear and tangible benefits of this program for our Fellows. 

Other notable updates from our amazing alumni:
  • WFI's 2011 Nigerian alumnus Gabriel Salako recently published a paper in the International Journal of Agroforestry Remote Sensing and GIS on PNW conifer selection for plantation forestry in Nigeria. It is now available free for download here. 
  • KT Esteban Park, our Korean Fellow from 2006, has had a stellar career with Eagon Corporation and was recently promoted to General Manager at Eagon USA Corp. Congratulations KT!
Elikia Amani, 2009 alumnus from the Democratic Republic of Congo, is still hard at work promoting forestry in his country. As part of his agency, the Congolese Foresters Network, he hosted the Provincial Tree Day Commemoration in South Kivu, DRC. This was an important training event to get the community and local organizations involved in tree planting. We are proud of Elikia for his continued efforts to promote best forestry practices in his home region. 

Congolese alumnus Elikia Amani explains tree planting best practices to community members and other stakeholders during a celebration in his home town of South Kivu.

Two of our 2014 alumni were recently reunited. Wai Wai Than from Myanmar visited Taipei, Taiwan, in November and met up with Zoe Yeh, both of whom have many good memories from their time together at WFI last year. Wai Wai presented a paper at a conference on agarwood at Taiwan National University. Several Burmese foresters traveled to this event, and of course representatives from Taiwan Forestry Research Institute, such as Zoe, were present. We're very pleased to see the connections made during their time at WFI extend to future partnerships and lifelong friendships.

Wai Wai Than, our Burmese Fellow from 2014, is an accomplished forest pathologist and gave a presentation about fungal species of agarwood at a conference held in Taiwan.
World Forest Institute (WFI) has started a Friends and Alumni Fund. Lithuanian alumnus Nerijus Miskinus prompted the creation of this fund by giving a generous donation to WFI in January 2013. Since that initial gift, other alumni and friends of WFI have donated and the fund is steadily growing. The Friends and Alumni Fund is used to sponsor Fellows for 6-month programs at WFI.

Thank you to everyone who has generously donated to the fund thus far.   If you would like to help an International Fellow participate in our program in Oregon, you can give a gift of any amount to the World Forest Institute Friends and Alumni Fund .  Your contributions support a Fellowship for someone who otherwise would not have this opportunity. And, as many of you know, this is a unique, once in a lifetime experience.
March Conference: 
Asia-Pacific Wood Trade Growth & Challenges
The World Forest Institute is organizing a March 1-2, 2016, conference that will focus on Asia-Pacific wood trade. The extraordinary economic growth of many countries in Asia over the last decade has made the region a primary driving force impacting wood demand and supply. "Changing Dynamics of the Asia-Pacific Wood Trade" conference is a two-day event that will feature industry perspectives from several countries. Topics will include:
  • Will China's explosive growth in log and lumber imports continue?
  • Will India become the "new China" for softwood log and lumber import markets?
  • Forecast for Russian exports of log and lumber roundwood into Asia.
  • Challenges and opportunities for Canada's softwood log exports.
  • Softwood and hardwood log and lumber exports from Australia--Future Developments.
  • As the largest log export supplier to Asia, is there still room for growth for New Zealand?
  • Tropical hardwood log trade trends into Asia.
Join us for a multi-faceted discussion on this important topic. Registration is open at: http://apwoodtrade.worldforestry.org/
This event is co-organized by DANA Ltd. and the World Forest Institute .  If you're interested in speaking or sponsoring, please contact Sara Wu at swu@worldforestry.org.

50th Anniversary Gala "Eat Dessert First"

The World Forestry Center's 50th Anniversary celebration  "Eat Dessert First" on February 6, 2016, will delight the senses with fabulous dessert & dinner, amazing music, and a breathtaking performance by BodyVox
Peter Corvallis Productions, with 50 years of experience in Portland, will decorate Miller Hall for a magical evening.  

Made in Oregon

If you are looking for a great locally sourced, locally-made gift this holiday season, check out essential oils made directly from Oregon's forests!  These Canopy brand oils come from the Oregon Woodlands Cooperative (OWC), a group made up of local family forestland owners that come together to sustainably manage their woodlands and help each other market their forest products. Read more about the recent visit our WFI Fellows had with the president of OWC on our blog . Visit OWC's website and the Canopy oils website too!
Community Events

Learn More About The World Forestry Center
          Event Rentals        WFC Tree Farms    Discovery Museum

Connect With Us!
Visit Us:
Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter      
4033 SW Canyon Rd 
Portland, Oregon 97221

Contact Us:
Michelle Coumarbatch 
Office Manager
503-228-1367 x100

Wendy Mitchell

Amber Morrison

Zakary Johnson
Database Administrator
Eric Vines
Executive Director

Rick Zenn
Senior Fellow

Reade Weber
Special Projects Manager

Jennifer Kent

Angie Garcia

Chuck Wiley
Facilities & Maintenance Manager 
Darlene Boles, C.P.A.

Sara Wu

Chandalin Bennett
Senior Program Manager

Shadia Duery
Program Manager
Mark Reed

Rob Pierce
Education Director

Louise George
Visitor Services Manager

Liam Hassett
Tree Farm Manager