Policy, People, & Popcorn

Participate  in the ongoing dialogue about current issues and opportunities related to forests and their management with this collection of sessions designed for interaction.

Forestry and Mitigating Risks: How Do We React to Fire, Drought, Insects, Disease, and Other Unexpected Challenges, and What Role Should Policy Play? 

Thursday, November 16, 9:30 am – 10:30 am
Healthy forests are integral to the success of our nation and a critical component of rural economic vitality. Yet, all forests are faced with significant challenges, and on occasion, policies present obstacles to doing the work necessary to foster and steward healthy forests. Featuring representatives from nongovernmental organizations, academia, and other forestry interests, this panel will discuss how to emphasize the impacts of these challenges facing our forests. Additionally, we will address ways to effectively communicate how the loss or decline in the health of these forests influences the quality of life we all enjoy.

Attracting and Retaining Talent in the Natural Resource Professions: Lessons Learned

Friday, November 17, 9:30 am – 10:30 am
Shifting demographics, increased urbanization, and research that shows that people are less connected to, and are spending less time in, the outdoors, collectively present challenges to universities and employers seeking to attract and retain talented individuals in natural resource professions. This panel features speakers at different points in their careers talking about their different experiences and the lessons, positive and otherwise, that have contributed to a successful career.

How Can I Advocate for My Profession?

Friday, November 17, 12:15 pm–1:15 pm 
The SAF Government Affairs and External Relations Team and SAF leaders will discuss priority issues being pursued by the staff at the national office. More importantly, they will provide insight and advice on how individuals can engage and build connections with policymakers and leaders at all levels. 

Collaboration in the Forest: What Are the Interesting Lessons, What Has Changed, and What Can We Expect in the Future? 

Friday, November 17, 3:00 pm–4:00 pm 
This panel will examine the history of collaboration, how collaboration was adopted into legislation, what has happened since collaboration went from a community activity to legislation, and what we may expect in the future now that it’s eight years after the Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration Program was enacted. The discussion will include strengths and weaknesses of various collaborative models, a discussion about the inputs and outputs necessary for success, and what the group sees as the most important components for success.