A Message from Our Executive Director

Eric Vines

We're about to turn 50.  That's something worth celebrating, and we have some exciting plans.  

The roots of today's World Forestry Center actually go all the way back to 1905 with the Lewis and Clark Exposition and the construction of its renowned Forestry Building.  More familiarly known as "the world's largest log cabin," it honored the contributions of the forest industry to the economy of the Pacific Northwest.  That massive and iconic Parthenon-in-the-woods-like building became one of the most popular tourist attractions in Oregon.  After its restoration in the 1950s, its popularity soared again until, on August 17, 1964, it was completely destroyed by an enormous fire.  The people of Portland grieved.  But within a few months, Portland's mayor convened a group of civic leaders charged with finding a way to rebuild it.  They formed a new nonprofit called the Western Forestry Center, raised funds, and secured a space in Washington Park next to the Zoo and OMSI (which relocated to the east-side in 1992).  This new organization changed its name to World Forestry Center in 1986.  But it was first officially recognized as a nonprofit organization in May of 1966.  This, then, is the year we get to celebrate our 50th anniversary! 
For much of our 50-year history, we have enjoyed the enduring leadership of outstanding individuals.  One such leader is Hank Swigert who joined the board in 1972 as a rising young corporate executive, and who, 44 years later, still serves on the Finance Committee.  Maybe he had no idea what he was getting into.  But this year we will honor Hank for his long commitment to our cultural and financial success by inducting him into the World Forestry Center's Leadership Hall. Hank will be formally recognized for his contributions at our 50th anniversary gala on February 6, a reunion event bringing together our current local members with our international members and fellows for what will be an unforgettable evening of entertainment and festivities.  

Our organization owes a great debt of gratitude to people like Hank for their long and dedicated commitment.  We hope you'll join us and raise a glass to Hank and all of his compatriots who have long recognized the important roles that forests play in sustaining a vibrant, healthy world.

Eric Vines
Executive Director  

The World's Largest Log Cabin

Leadership Hall Spotlight
Henry T. Swigert
50th Anniversary Leadership Hall Inductee

We are honored to be inducting Hank Swigert into the World Forestry Center
Leadership Hall at the 50th Anniversary Gala, February 6, 2016.

Read Full Biography Here.
Board Member Update

On behalf of all WFC staff, we bestow our deepest  appreciation  to Patty Bedient, Executive Vice President and CFO of Weyerhaeuser, f or her years of service as a board member of the World Forestry Center.  Patty retired from the board this month after serving for 14 years.

Patty, we t hank you for bringing your passion, experience and insight to the World Forestry Center. Your time and energy has been very valuable and most appreciated. 
World Forest Institute Alumni Updates
Forest fellowships for Sabahans

State Forestry Department Director Datuk Sam Mannan and the World Forest Institute, the professional development arm of the World Forestry Center, endorsed a Notes of Cooperation understanding at a dinner hosted by the Forestry Department in Sandakan. 

See full article here
March Conference: 
Asia-Pacific Wood Trade Growth & Challenges
Is India the New China?

With over a billion people, a rapidly growing economy, and restrictions on timber harvesting, India has seen large jumps in imported wood demand from 58 million cubic meters in 2000 to an expected 150 million m3 by 2018. Will India become the "new China" for softwood log and lumber import markets in the next decade? These and other questions will be discussed at our "Changing Dynamics of the Asia-Pacific Wood Trade" conference at the World Forestry Center on March 1-2. Registration is open.

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

Presenting Sponsor

With many thanks to: 

World Forestry Center Art Gallery

Handcrafted Hardwood Furniture by The Joinery

Since its founding in Portland more than 30 years ago,  The Joinery has become nationally renowned for its ability to use classic woodworking techniques to create furniture that pleases the senses and lasts for a lifetime. Ingrained within this consummate craftsmanship is a deep devotion to the distinctive character of every piece of wood; to sustainable practices; to zero wood waste; and to quality and functionality that eloquently transcend our throwaway culture.

The furniture pieces at this exhibit beautifully demonstrate how The Joinery lets nature's own canvas and paintbrush come to the fore.

We of the World Forestry Center are thrilled to be partnering with  The Joinery  displaying their fine wooden craftsmanship in our Art Gallery.

Exhibit now through February 14  *    Free Art Gallery Admission

The  Architectural Foundation of Oregon and the World Forestry Center have joined together to bring you a stunning exhibit of intricate wooden architectural models.  The exhibit will be located at the World Forestry Center's Merlo Hall.  John Storrs, partnering with architect William Church, designed Merlo Hall in 1988 to house the international World Forest Institute program.

Exhibit now through February 26  *  Free Art Gallery Admission

Monday - Friday 9 am to 3 pm , Merlo Hall  (not in the Museum)

Community Events

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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