School News

NW Environmental forum on watershed services

The Northwest Environmental Forum held a session on "Forest Watershed Services: Forests for Fish, Forests for Faucets," on June 15-16, 2011 at the UW Botanic Gardens. The session launched an initiative to develop and implement a demonstration forest watershed services market in response to state legislation directing the maximization of the ecosystem services provided by forestry. 

The forum was attended by participants who heard from a diverse group of speakers focusing on market-based conservation strategies for forest watershed ecosystem services.  Speakers from SFR included Forum Leader Brian Boyle and Research Scientist Luke Rogers.  Speakers came from a diverse array of stakeholder interests including forest landowners, conservation organizations, state and federal regulators, public water utilities, and scientists. Dr. Mark Nechodom, USDA Senior Advisor for Environmental Markets, also attended and was the dinner speaker.

Upper Nisqually River braided channel. Photo courtesy of: Pierce County.

Session outcomes included an agreement to focus on water markets within the Snohomish and  Nisqually watersheds. Teams of stakeholders commited to work througout the summer on proof of principal for each watershed. The meeting agenda and presentations are available at


The Washington Pulp and Paper Foundation (WPPF) held its 42nd Annual Conference, "Preparing our Students for a Bio-Based Industry," on May 26, 2011 on the UW campus. WPPF, an organization of member companies, alumni, and friends centered at the UW, fosters focused and dedicated graduates in  bioresource science and engineering/chemical engineering through financial support, UW linkages and research, and networking and public outreach. 

The conference featured keynote speaker College of the Environment Dean Lisa Graumlich (’85); a student appreciation speech by Tyler Pegg, ’11; the establishment of the WPPF’s new Five Year Plan; and student posters and seminars showcasing the Bioresource Science and Engineering (BSE) curriculum.   The conference also provided opportunities to reconnect with friends, alumni, and colleagues, and to network with students about the BSE educational and research programs as well as future internships, co-op, and full time employment opportunities.  Recognition awards included the Outstanding Alumni Award bestowed on Colleen Ponto,’82, now a faculty member at Seattle University; the Wall of Fame Award recipient David Thorud, former UW Provost and Dean of the College of Forest Resources; Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Bill Fuller, ’68, and Donald Root, former WPPF President and Executive Director, for whom WPPF’s newest scholarship endowment is named. 

Rick Gustafson with Wall of Fame Award recipient Dean Emeritus David Thorud. Photo: Joy Louie.

The value of the financial support received by students in the program is highlighted by the words of senior Tyler Pegg, recipient of this year’s WPPF Alumni Scholarship: “I thank you very much for your ongoing financial support as I pursue my degree in Bioresource Science and Engineering. With the beginning of every quarter I'm reminded






how fortunate I am to be receiving such a gift in order to pursue my education. I know that graduating from the UW would be impossible without your assistance and am extremely grateful for your continuous support of my education.”


international year of forests 2011

To raise awareness of the sustainable management and conservation of all types of forests, upon which 1.6 billion people depend for their livelihoods and subsistence needs and in which over 60 million people make their homes, the United Nations declared 2011 as the International Year of Forests.  Participating in this worldwide celebration, SFR developed a series of events that included the annual Sustaining our Northwest World Lecture, presenting SFR alum Nalini Nadkarni, ‘83, speaking on "Sustaining Forests and Sustaining Ourselves—Trees as Providers and Inspiration for our Lives”; a student capstone culminating in the submission of a position paper to the United Nations Forum on Forests; a Distinguished Alumni Seminar panel presentation with participation from alumni holding leadership positions in global forestry and conservation (see the Alumni Focus section of this newsletter) and a Denman Forestry Issues program on global forestry challenges. Other events included an International Forestry Students Association showing of the winning films in the International Forest Film competition.

recent faculty books

John and Colleen Marzluff’s new book,Dog Days, Raven Nights, published by Yale University Press, chronicles the authors’ pathbreaking research on ravens in Maine’s north woods, where they raised, trained, and used sled dogs in their research as they assembled a gigantic aviary, climbed sentry trees, built bird blinds in the forest, captured and sustained 300 ravens as study subjects—all while enduring harsh Maine winters. Affiliate Asistant Professor Don McKenzkie, ’94, ’98, is co-editor of the recently publishedThe Landscape Ecology of Fire.  SFR faculty, staff, and alumni contributors to the book include Ze’ev Gedalof, ’02; Jessica Halofsky; Morris Johnson ’01, 08; Maureen Kennedy, Jeremy Littell, ’06, and Professor Dave Peterson. The book is dedicated to the memory of alumna Lara-Karena Kellogg, ’07.  Sarah Reichard's book, The Conscientious Gardener, reported in the Winter 2010 SFR News, was recently reviewed by theNew York Times.


In faculty news, Sarah Reichard has been appointed Interim Director of the UW Botanic Gardens (UWBG) through June 30, 2011 and on July 1, 2011will hold the position of Orin and Althea Soest Director. Craig Thomas, of the Evans School of Public Affairs, was appointed Adjunct Associate Professor, effective June 16, 2011; he often serves on graduate committees of SFR's MS/MPH students and his interests include environmental policy, public  management, and collaborative governance.  Recent affiliate faculty appointments include Robert Deal, '87, working with the Precision Forestry Cooperative (PFC) on silviculture and ecosystem services; Chih Lin Huang, working with the PFC and the Stand Management Cooperative on wood quality modeling; Mack Hogans,'76, helping develop and facilitate the Distinguished Alumni Seminar; Narasimhan (Sim) Larkin, working on wildfire research; and Bradner McRae, collaborating in the fields of ecology and conservation.

SFR also welcomed postdoctoral research associate Julie Heinrichs, who is working with Josh Lawler and John Marzluff on wildlife population dynamics.

The School’s Visiting Committee welcomed four new members in 2011: Della Balick, representing the Arboretum Foundation; Ara Erickson, ’04, representing the Forest Resources Alumni Association; Alina Niklison, representing College of the Environment Advancement; and Phil Rigdon, ’96,  representing the Yakama Nation.   Committee member Court Stanley, ’83, assumed the role of committee chair, while former chair Brian Boyle remains on the committee representing the Northwest Environmental Forum.  SFR thanks outgoing members Tom Hanson, ’81, Bettina Van Hagen, Arlen Washines, and Barbara Wright, and acknowledges the leadership provided by Brian Boyle during his term as chair.

Governor Chris Gregoire signed SHB 1254, updating Institute of Forest Resources language to help ensure that SFR’s forest research and outreach programs maintain the health of Washington's forest sector. The Bill endorses a collaborative and interdisciplinary approach to future research programs and also addresses the future of forestry and natural resources education at the UW.

In news from the UW Botanic Gardens, the Elisabeth C. Miller Library’s Plant Answer Line (206-897-5268) celebrated 10 years of helping thousands of people all over the world with plant related questions. Washington Park Arboretum collection manager Randall Hitchin reports that the majority of new plants added in 2010 represent plants that have never grown at the Arboretum before and that one-third of the specimens grew from wild collected seeds. In January, Sarah Reichard and alumnus Dan Hinkley, ’85, led a tour of Chile focusing on native plants and famous parks and gardens of the region. The tour helped raise funds for UWBG; a travel blog by Reichard provides highlights of the two-week adventure filled tour.

The February 24, 2011 Sustaining Our Northwest World Lecture featured alumnus Nalini Nadkarni, ’83,  speaking on "Trees as Providers and Inspiration for our Lives.”

The 2011 Graduate Student Symposium was held on February 25th in the Lockwood Forest Club Room. Nineteen student presentations covered a wide range of topics, including restoration, ecosystem services, forest ecology, soil science, and precision forestry.  

The Distinguished Alumni Seminar on May 6, 2011  featured a panel presentation by three SFR alumni working in the fields of international forestry, conservation, and development.

The May 10, 2011 Denman Forestry Issues program on "Celebrating The International Year of Forests 2011" featured SFR faculty, staff, and student speakers, with talks ranging widely on conservation and forest ecology in a global context.  

SFR's 2011 graduating class got a warm sendoff at the School's annual graduation celebration on June 10, 2011. Following a formal program in Kane Hall, at which College of the Environment Dean Lisa Graumlich, '85, gave the keynote speech, graduates and their families gathered along with faculty, staff, and students in the Anderson courtyard to enjoy cake and punch and an afternoon of camaraderie. The class of 124 students was awarded 68 Bachelor of Science in Forest Resources, 33 Master of Science, three Master of Forest Resources, four Master of Environmental Horticulture, and 16 Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Graduates will go on to a diversity of careers in the public and private sector, as well as continuing study at the graduate level.

PhD candidate James Freund and PhD graduate Lauren Urgensen celebrate Graduation 2011 in the Forest Resources courtyard. Photo: Chase Stephens.