Faces of Forestry: Garrett McLaughlin, RPF, MSc, Technical Advisor, Province of B.C.

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia (BC). This month, we feature Garrett McLaughlin, RPF, MSc, Technical Advisor, with the Province of British Columbia.

Garrett started his career in forestry almost 20 years ago when he took a summer job with the United States Forest Service in northern Pennsylvania. By the end of that summer, Garrett had found his path toward a career in forestry that has led him to working as a timber cruiser in California, a carbon offset project developer in the Great Bear Rain Forest, and as a carbon modeler and technical advisor with the province of BC.

“I have always been drawn to outdoor sports and activities, and I wanted a career where I could go outside and run around in the woods,” said Garrett. “Being a forest carbon advisor and modeler has combined my interests in computer science with my passion for forest ecosystems.”

Garrett has worked in connection with FESBC on research related to the costs and climate benefits of utilizing slash piles instead of burning them. Garrett developed a decision support tool to determine the lifecycle carbon impact associated with producing different types of products from residual fiber.

“It is important to try to get an estimate of the carbon impacts of avoided slash pile burning to better understand the potential climate benefits of improved fiber utilization,” said Garrett. “While there is always more to consider, having an idea of how much carbon is being stored or emitted to the atmosphere is an important piece of the puzzle to understanding how forest practices can impact and mitigate climate change.”

In his role as Technical Advisor with the Office of the Chief Forester, Garrett continues to work on research and policy related to promoting further utilization of harvest residuals in the province. He is also working with other forestry professionals and scientists to develop guidance for incorporating carbon mitigation strategies into forest management, as well as policy to set up and enable the development of carbon offset projects across BC.

Faces of Forestry: Percy Guichon

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Percy Guichon, Executive Director of Central Chilcotin Rehabilitation Ltd. (CCR) and elected Councillor of Tŝideldel First Nation.

From a young age, Percy enjoyed being an active member of his community and learning about forestry. After raising a family, Percy attended the College of New Caledonia in Prince George and received a Forest Technician Diploma. He was able to merge both of his passions to build a meaningful career that has brought new opportunities to his community.

“I first became interested in forestry when I participated in a work experience program in grade 12th. Also, I was involved in the creation and operations of Tsideldel Enterprises Ltd. These experiences motivated me to learn more about forestry academically. My education was sponsored by Tsideldel Education Trust Fund, an initiative developed by Tsideldel Enterprises Ltd,” said Percy.

Today, Percy is active on numerous boards, including the Eniyud Community Forests, Tsi Del Del Enterprises Ltd., Dandzen Development Corporation and Tl’etinqox Economic Development Corporation.

As the Executive Director of CCR and a Councillor of Tŝideldel First Nation, Percy has played a pivotal role in the company’s growth and success. Reflecting on the journey, Percy acknowledges the challenges faced and attributes the company’s achievements to perseverance, hard work, and the unwavering support of the community. His commitment to making a positive impact on the land and people is evident in CCR’s recognized leadership in the forestry industry.

CCR is a First Nation-owned company located in Williams Lake, B.C. The company is a joint venture between Tsideldel First Nation and Tl’etinqox Government, both Tsilhqotin Nation communities. CCR is set on coordinating and implementing large-scale forestry programs and forest rehabilitation activities within the traditional territories, ensuring the long-term sustainability of the land through traditional Indigenous practices.

“As an Indigenous business partnership, we are proud to represent the successes of Indigenous businesses and entrepreneurs,” noted Percy. “Our success demonstrates that First Nations can take the lead in forest management and make significant contributions to the economy, while also being thoughtful stewards of the land.”

Through the continuation of CCR, over time, the local communities can boost economic growth and sustainability by investing in and training a skilled workforce, which results in the creation of new jobs.

“I’m proud to represent my community,” Percy said, adding, “It’s rewarding to collaborate with my community, other First Nation bands, industry leaders, and government; to create meaningful employment and build capacity in the forestry sector. Together, we can build stronger, healthier, and safer First Nation communities.”

Thank you, Percy, for paving the way and inspiring present and future generations to get involved in forestry.  

Faces of Forestry: Kelsey Winter

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Kelsey Winter, Wildfire Operations Manager with FPInnovations and former FireSmart Program Lead for the BC Wildfire Service and the former Chair of the BC FireSmart Committee (BCFSC).

After working as a Sales Account Manager for an international shipping company in Belgium, Kelsey returned to Canada to make it her forever home. Later, she found the inspiration to join the forestry sector; after spending her summers working with the Kamloops Fire Centre.

“I loved being an initial attack crew member and then leader, and rapidly fell in love with the science behind wildfire, everything from grass curing to Kestrel tuning,” said Kelsey.

Kelsey has a Master’s in Fire Ecology, and a Master’s in Natural Resources, and she is currently pursuing her PhD in Public Administration, focusing on wildfire resiliency for Indigenous communities.

“I stayed in the field long enough to start my first Master’s degree and then moved into a strategic communications role in the office while I finished my second degree. I’ve been with wildfire ever since.”

Recently, Kelsey moved to her new role as the Wildfire Operations Manager with FPInnovations.

“It has been a big change, but one that I’m incredibly excited about. FPInnovations is an R&D organization that specializes in the creation of solutions that accelerate the growth of the Canadian forest sector and its affiliated industries to enhance their global competitiveness. I’m about to get even more forest-y!” said Kelsey.

Before moving to this role, Kelsey was the FireSmart Program Lead for the BC Wildfire Service and the Chair of the BCFSC for seven years. In her role, Kelsey led the development and implementation of the FireSmart strategic goals across the Province.

FireSmart BC is the first point of contact for residents and stakeholders in all things wildfire, from risk mitigation to resident education, to working in collaboration with industry leaders and communities to building community wildfire resiliency.

Kelsey and her team collaborated with BCFSC members, and together they ensured the adequate delivery of FireSmart programs; aimed at enhancing wildfire preparedness, prevention, and mitigation in communities.

“Leading the incredibly talented and dedicated group that makes up the FireSmart BC team was one of the most rewarding parts of my career. They are caring and passionate about their jobs, and they believe in the difference that they’re making,” noted Kelsey.

As the Chair of the BCFSC, Kelsey collaborated with other BCFSC members to ensure that the committee worked in alignment as one governing organization, coordinating resources for the betterment of British Columbians.

Throughout her career in forestry, Kelsey is most proud to work alongside dedicated foresters who share similar values. She encourages young people to take an interest in the forestry industry, as she believes it is essential to B.C.

“I’d encourage all the women out there, that maybe feel like forestry is a male-dominated industry, to push that aside and pursue a career here if that is where their heart is at. In the 15 years that I’ve been in the forest industry, I have had the immense honour of working with some of the most talented and bright women around,” remarked Kelsey.

Thank you, Kelsey, for contributing to the forestry sector and helping communities across B.C. build wildfire resiliency, one step at a time.

Faces of Forestry: Dr. Caren Dymond, PhD, P.Ag, Forest Carbon and Climate Change Researcher, Province of British Columbia

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Dr. Caren Dymond, PhD, P.Ag, Forest Carbon and Climate Change Researcher with the Province of British Columbia.

Caren grew up in the Canadian Rockies hiking and cross-country skiing which led to a love of nature and the outdoors. Besides her passion for “green and growing things” that she attributes to her mother, Caren had two mentors in university who worked on forests and forest management which led her to pursue a career in forestry.

Currently, Caren is a Forest Carbon and Climate Change Researcher with the Ministry of Forests in BC and an Adjunct Professor at the University of Calgary and the University of Northern BC. In her role, Caren conducts field research, modelling, and collaborates with economists, silviculture specialists, and other forestry professionals to assess forestry management practices for climate action – this includes studying everything from how forests are growing and what their natural disturbances are, to reducing harvest residues.

“When forests are green and growing, they can play a vital role in mitigation and adaptation to climate change,” said Caren. “We have found that the diversification of species provides the best outcomes for tree productivity and for capturing carbon – essentially we are hedging our bets,” explains Caren.

Caren was one of the first to study integrating climate change adaptation and mitigation actions into the management of our forests.  Her research program has led to several papers assessing planting seedlings to enhance diversity and aiding assisted migration projects. She also co-leads projects related to assessing partial harvesting and the conservation of old-growth forests.

“Partial harvesting is key to reducing harvest residues and to ensuring that healthy trees remain carbon sinks in the right ecosystems. Also, changing our planting to reduce risks and take advantage of different growing conditions can also help to make our forests more resilient for future climate conditions,” said Caren.

Through sustainable forest management practices, forests can be an integral part of the solution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and Caren is proud to collaborate with researchers and forestry professionals to enhance the resilience of BC’s forests.

Faces of Forestry: Stephan Martineau

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Stephan Martineau, the Founding Director and Manager of Slocan Integral Forestry Cooperative (SIFCo).

Stephan’s passion for ecosystems and community development inspired him to pursue a career in forestry, dedicating his life to creating systems that bring communities and forests together through education and collaboration.

“In B.C., forest ecosystems represent most of the land base we interact with as humans. Finding and implementing a more balanced relationship between humans and ecosystems is a lifelong passion of mine, and forestry is the field that gets me closest to working on that,” noted Stephan.

For Stephan, the future brings rapid changes in the landscape; where developing balanced systems centred on climate change adaptation and community resiliency is critical to ensuring long-term economic, social, and environmental stability.

He believes community forests are a great platform to promote community integrity, where residents share knowledge and values that are part of the decisions made to manage local resources.

In 2003, Stephan and various sectors of the Slocan Valley community came together to bring to life their vision to develop a community forest plan to care for and protect the land and resources. The collective then became Slocan Integral Forestry Cooperative (SIFCo) and met with local woodlot owners, First Nations, and other interested parties to gather community input and support letters.

In 2007, SIFCo’s application was approved, and a 25-year Community Forest Agreement (CFA) was signed with the Province of British Columbia.

“A lot of people truly care in the field, and a lot of changes are happening,” said Stephan, adding, “What I enjoy most in my career is the process of going from concept to implementation, in other words, the experience of looking back after something is completed and going, ‘Wow, this was just a thought a few years back!’”

SIFCo is located at the heart of the Slocan Valley, consisting of approximately 840,000 acres of land and water. As a non-profit, SIFCo aims to be a leader in climate change adaptation, community resiliency, ecosystem-based management, and economic diversification by providing the opportunity for the community to manage, sustain, and enjoy the benefits of the local forest.

“At SIFCo, we have been proactive in approaching a holistic response to rapidly changing climate conditions in our bioregion. I try to foresee where we will need to be 10-20 years from now — both as an organization and in our relationship with the land base we steward — and implement actions now that will prepare the ground for a resilient future,” explained Stephan.

Thank you, Stephan, and the team at SIFCo, for your commendable efforts toward community resiliency and climate change action, both integral components to ensuring future healthy forests.

Faces of Forestry: Norah White

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Norah White, RPF, MBA, Director of the Forest Carbon, and Climate Services Branch, Province of British Columbia.

Norah has always been drawn to the diversity of BC’s ecosystems and it was her love of nature that pulled her into working with natural resources. She has spent nearly 20 years in the forestry sector working on traditional forestry topics such as monitoring, planning, and stewardship and what she considers the “new frontier” of forestry, which is the role of forestry practices in mitigating and adapting to climate change risks.

Norah is a Registered Professional Forester and the Director of the Forest Carbon and Climate Services Branch (FCCSB) in the Office of the Chief Forester with the Ministry of Forests. “We are the climate change engine of our Ministry, and it is exciting to be a part of a team of innovative thought leaders who are contributing to work that has a global impact,” said Norah.

In the FCCSB, Norah’s team researches the vital role that forests play in absorbing and storing carbon from the atmosphere and how sustainable forestry practices can ensure our forests are climate resilient. From modifying planting and harvesting practices, to tracking carbon through wood products, rethinking the utilization of slash piles, implementing carbon off-set projects, and more, Norah’s branch is responding to the urgent priority that climate change poses to our natural resource sector and how forests and foresters can be part of the solution. 

“In a landscape as dynamic and diverse as BC, active management gives us the best chance of keeping our forests healthy and doing our part in a changing climate to reduce atmospheric carbon,” said Norah. “Climate change can be daunting to learn about, but as a forester, I believe there is a unique duty to face this learning challenge. If I could share one realization, it is that forest management is climate action.”

Norah’s team collaborates with forestry professionals, Indigenous nations, scientists, and climatologists to facilitate and support the extension of knowledge. “Our research is pushing the bounds of lifecycle analysis to help us see what the optimal carbon and economic management options are,” said Norah. “We are learning more every day about what ecosystems are capable of and how forestry practices can be synonymous with reconciliation.”

Faces of Forestry: Kim Haworth, RPF

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Kim Haworth, a Registered Professional Forester and General Manager of Terrace Community Forest (TCF), which operates in the areas of Shames/Amesbury, Deep Creek, and Kitimat.

For Kim, forestry runs in the family, and at an early age, he became interested in different tree species. He decided to pursue a Bachelor of Science, majoring in forestry, at the University of Alberta.

“I had American relatives who worked in the forest industry, so I thought that would be a good option. My uncle had a woodlot which contained black walnut tree species which I found of interest because of its value. After I became the Silviculturist in Terrace, I established an outplant trial which included black walnut trees,” explained Kim.  

As a Silviculturist and the General Manager of the TCF, Kim provides high-level direction to the governance and management of the community forest, with the overall goals of securing long-term jobs while improving timber, wildlife, and biodiversity values. 

“I specialized in silviculture, which has been very rewarding. Since the beginning of my career, I have been involved in tree incremental programs for the industry, government, and now TCF,” said Kim. 

Kim and his team at TCF strive to involve the public in every decision of the community forest. A key aspect of this is ensuring relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous community members remain strong and serve as a way to advocate for forest innovation and community development.

The TCF strives for multiple outcomes that provide social and economic benefits to the City of Terrace while advocating for forest innovation and environmental stewardship. In 2021, the TCF presented a $1 million cheque to the City of Terrace after a significant upswing in profits through its sale of logs. 

Kim is passionate about forestry and plans to continue highlighting the many benefits it brings. “Forestry has provided many things for communities besides employment and revenue for the Crown. It has also provided road infrastructure which allows access to remote areas for excellent recreational opportunities.”

Thank you, Kim, for your education work with local community members to create understanding while also encouraging the community’s participation in the forestry sector in providing input and helping to make decisions that benefit communities, forests, and society as a whole.

Faces of Forestry: Rebecca Werner, RFT

Rebecca Werner; FESBC's Faces of Forestry Feature

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Rebecca Werner, RFT, Project Manager with Pro-Tech Forest Resources Ltd. (Pro-Tech).

Rebecca’s passion for the outdoors and nature motivated her to start a career in forestry. As a Registered Forest Technologist (RFT), Rebecca has a strong background in layout, planning, silviculture, cutting permit acquisition, harvesting, and fuel mitigation.

“Forestry offers an opportunity for me to work outdoors and explore new territories. I have always liked trees and nature, so it seemed like a ‘natural’ fit,” explained Rebecca.

Rebecca’s forestry career has included many management roles with the Government, Canadian Forest Products, and currently as a Project Manager for Pro-Tech where, she oversees a wide range of forest management projects throughout northern B.C.  For 30 years, Pro-Tech has been delivering high-value consulting services to a diverse spectrum of clients. Rebecca and the Pro-Tech team specialize in resource management planning, operational development, forest health, silviculture, GIS services, and wildfire risk reduction planning.

Just recently, Rebecca managed a wildfire fuel mitigation project funded by FESBC on behalf of the District of Houston, B.C. The project involved the cooperation of multiple parties with the overall goal of getting value for what was logged and reducing forest fuels that posed a hazard to the District of Houston.

“Without my co-workers, this project would not have been successful as it was. Without everyone believing in the project and assisting us in various ways, we would never have been able to complete the program. Fuel reduction is a team effort!” added Rebecca.

Whether she is assisting clients with their project needs, collaborating with industry colleagues on strategic planning, or out in the field conducting research, Rebecca’s passion for the outdoors and nature keeps her looking out for opportunities to enhance our forests and support our communities.

“Forestry is not an exact science, and there are many things that people have no control over in forestry as nature plays a major role. You will be far more successful and less frustrated if you accept that you can’t control everything and instead work with nature rather than trying to control it,” noted Rebecca.

Faces of Forestry: Dan Macmaster

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Dan Macmaster, RPF, Fibre Manager of Vaagen Fibre Canada (Vaagen).

Since the beginning of his career, Dan has been passionate about the natural environment. As a former high-school teacher, he taught students about outdoor education subjects like biology and ecology.

Dan has a Master’s degree in Sustainable Forest Management from the University of British Columbia. He is active on numerous boards, including the BC First Nations Forestry Council, BC Community Forest Association, Interior Lumber Manufacturing Association, and the Okanagan Nation Alliance’s forestry working group. Just recently, Dan was appointed to the Province of B.C.’s Forestry Worker Supports and Community Resiliency Council, chaired by Doug Routley, Parliamentary Secretary for Forests.

“Working in forestry, I have the opportunity to engage with people, share ideas, learn about community values, and make key decisions that so many people depend on,” noted Dan.

In 2013, he joined Vaagen, a small, family-run mill, located in the rural community of Midway, in the Boundary region of B.C. As the Fibre Manager for Vaagen, Dan and his team process small-diameter logs into high-quality dimensional lumber. Using innovation, technology, and collaboration, the team focuses on safety, utilization, and building strong partnerships with other licenses.

Currently, Vaagen holds a management agreement with the West Boundary Community Forest (WBCF) and the Osoyoos Indian Band’s (OIB) forestry licences. As the Forest Manager for the WBCF, Dan, along with his team carries out all forest management projects in collaboration with OIB.

“As a forestry company, it is important for us to understand the values and traditions of the land. The expertise the surrounding communities bring to the table is critical to our work,” Dan added.

Dan’s involvement in the community is an essential part of Vaagen’s commitment to sustainable forestry, developing new and strong relationships with First Nations, and stabilizing local rural communities with employment and sustainable economic opportunities. Not only does Dan believe in the power of community and educating people in all things forestry, but he believes in inspiring other foresters to take similar actions.

“I like the saying that a picture is worth a thousand words, but a visit to the forest is worth a thousand pictures. I encourage my fellow foresters to reach out to their community members to help build awareness for all that happens within our forests,” said Dan.

In his role, Dan manages multiple objectives within the forest, including recreation, wildlife and timber values. Dan is also passionate about providing educational outreach opportunities to young students. He is rooted in the belief that these learning opportunities are critical to the future well-being of community forests and the forest industry.

“As forest professionals, we often manage many different responsibilities and competing demands that leave little room for educational outreach,” noted Dan. I believe if we can reorganize some of our priorities and enlist the help of other forest professionals and educators, then communication and collaboration specific to forestry education will better inform our communities and our next generation.”

Faces of Forestry: Ken Nielsen

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Ken Nielsen, General Manager of the Chinook Community Forest (CCF), the 90,670 hectares of community forest located near the Village of Burns Lake.

Ken started his career in forestry in the early 80s when the forest industry in British Columbia continued to experience noticeable changes. At the time, several mills began to automate many of their intensive labour activities, and many rural communities depended greatly on forestry as their primary source of employment.

“When I entered the forest sector, it was mostly about prioritizing financial objectives. Now, we focus on properly managing our land for future generations, promoting community unity, and increasing wildfire awareness,” Ken noted.

As the General Manager of CCF, Ken oversees forestry and logging operations, wildfire salvage projects, and wildfire mitigation efforts. The work Ken and his team carries out in the community forest ensures environmental sustainability and employment opportunities for economic and social growth.

The community forest agreement includes eight partnerships consisting of the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako, the Village of Burns Lake, Lake Babine Nation, Skin Tyee First Nation, Nee Tahi Buhn Indian Band, Burns Lake Indian Band (Ts’il Kaz Koh), Cheslatta Carrier Nation and Wet’suwet’en First Nation. The collaboration between the Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities ensures an equal voice and equity in all forest stewardship operations.

Nielsen believes that managing the forest requires a particular set of qualities. “I am an example that to take good care of a community forest, you need an awareness of the best land management practices, a hands-on approach, a strong work ethic, and a big heart.”

Faces of Forestry: Kirsteen Laing

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Kirsteen Laing, RPF (Registered Professional Forester), Administrator at Seaton Forest Products Ltd.

Born in England, Kirsteen originally moved to Vancouver with her family at the age of 10. Where she later decided to pursue higher education at the University of British Columbia, and after two years of pre-med school, she discovered that her true passion was in the outdoors.

“I decided medicine wasn’t for me, so I went to talk to one of the forestry professors. He was enthusiastic and told me of all the possibilities found in forestry. I entered the program thinking I would do Forest Recreation, but I ended up in Forest Silviculture,” remarked Kirsteen.

In the early stages of her career, Kirsteen joined CUSO International and worked as a forester in Mozambique. During her stay, she first worked for a national logging company and then for a plantation, where she gained experience revitalizing a nursery.

“It was a forester’s dream to have our own little forest to work with. The project was fascinating because it covered beekeeping, fishkeeping, planting orchards, and vegetable gardening,” said Kirsteen.

In 1986, Kirsteen decided to relocate to Smithers, British Columbia, where she started a forestry consulting firm. After many career changes, in 2015, Kirsteen met her partner Andy Thompson and joined Seaton Forest Products Ltd.; as an Administrator in charge of payroll, payables and receivables, log deliveries, product shipping, reporting and various hands-on tasks.

Seaton Forest Products Ltd. is nestled among coastal mountains in the beautiful Bulkley Valley, where the mill sits at the foot of Seaton Mountain. The company has been in business since 2016, employing approximately 25 people, the majority being from local Indigenous communities. The primary business is processing dry balsam, pine, and spruce that cannot be used by traditional mills and historically has been left in the bush or burned, ensuring the 100% utilization of fibre.

During her career, Kirsteen has done it all. From working for industry, volunteering overseas, consulting, working for not-for-profits, and now working at a sawmill. She describes her career as a rewarding journey. In every role Kirsteen excels at, she puts other people and the environment first.

“Forestry is a very diverse field with many different career paths to choose from after graduation,” remarked Kirsteen.

Faces of Forestry: Steve Law

Faces of Forestry is an initiative of the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) to highlight people doing great work to enhance our forests throughout British Columbia. This month, we feature Steve Law, RPF (Registered Professional Forester), General Manager of the Clinton Community Forest (CCF).

Steve’s profound passion for the outdoors, mountain biking and his “outside the box” mindset led him to start a career in forestry. He has completed a Diploma of Forestry Resource Technology from the College of New Caledonia, graduated from the Association of BC Forest Professionals Pupil Program and became a Registered Professional Forester in 1997. 

Currently, Steve is the General Manager of the Clinton Community Forest and manages ten woodlots in the Cariboo Region. In his role, he works with the volunteer Board of Directors and the Village of Clinton to carry out safe and sustainable management practices for timber production, recreation, and natural preservation. 

“Forestry is much more complex than just logging and milling. There is equal consideration of other factors such as wildlife, riparian, visual quality, social and First Nations values, etc. I especially enjoy the operations part of forestry, which includes increased utilization of poor quality, low-value timber or biomass which minimizes or eliminates the need to burn slash piles. I am involved from start to finish in planning, operations, and silviculture, and through my work at CCF, I get to see the proceeds go back to the community,” explains Steve. 

After meeting operational costs, surplus funds are invested into the community and surrounding area. As residents of the Village of Clinton, the volunteer Board of Directors seeks to benefit the local area through programs, events, and bursaries. 

“Community forestry with the direction of a Board of Directors, allows us more freedom to manage social and economic community values,” said Steve.

To balance the economic and ecological concerns, the CCF has applied for funding with the FESBC for fuel break and wildfire risk reduction treatments. The projects will help reduce the wildfire hazard in high-priority areas within the community forest and surrounding rural developments. The wildfire risk activities include standard fuel management practices such as thinning, pruning, removal of unhealthy trees, understory burning, and encouragement of deciduous tree growth.

“This has only been possible with FESBC support and funding, and the FESBC management and staff have been extremely encouraging in making these goals happen,” noted Steve.