Message from CEO: COVID-19

March 16, 2020

No doubt by now you have been overwhelmed with news reports and email from several sources regarding the rapidly spreading coronavirus (COVID-19). Your health and safety are a top concern for us here at SAF, and I strongly encourage you to follow the guidance provided by your local health department and the Centers for Disease Control to protect yourself and your loved ones. 

There are a few things I want to make you aware of with SAF. A couple of weeks ago we provided information and guidance to local SAF unit leaders regarding upcoming events and COVID-19. Many of these events have since been cancelled or postponed to avoid your potential exposure to the virus. 

At this point, it is too soon to determine what impact (if any) COVID-19 may have on the SAF 2020 convention. Planning continues, and we remain on track to proceed with the convention in Providence, RI, in late October. Should anything change, we will notify you.    

In addition to earning CFEs, we recognize that COVID-19 may affect your efforts to retain or earn your credential from examination. With potential for canceled or rescheduled examinations, we are working with testing providers to provide you the most accurate information. I want to assure you that credential holders will not be penalized if they can’t fulfill their CFEs due to trainings cancelled as a result of COVID-19. We will work with current credential holders who expire within the next 6 months to ensure they are not penalized as a result of these extenuating circumstances. Please visit our Certification page for FAQs.

In the immediate term, out of an abundance of caution for the welfare of our professional staff and visitors, and to be able to continue serving you, I closed our offices in Bethesda today at 6 PM ET for a period of two weeks. During this time, SAF will remain open for business with the staff working remotely.  

You can call or email us as you normally would without disruption. Please note, however, that receipt of mailed correspondence and payments will be delayed. I ask that you consider paying online at whenever possible.

I will continue to monitor conditions and guidance provided by federal and state authorities to determine if our staff should continue working remotely beyond March 31. In that situation, I will update you accordingly.    

We understand that this situation will impact many of our members in various ways. As SAF, we will support you in anyway that we can.

Take care,

Terry Baker
Chief Executive Officer
Society of American Foresters