On May 9-10, 2016, Sustainable Northwest and the World Forestry Center co-hosted the Third Annual Community Forest Forum in Portland, Oregon. This is the only regional community forest conference and networking event focused on community forests in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Northern California.
The event included a networking reception followed by a day of panels, in-depth presentations, and small group discussions that aimed to elevate understanding and awareness of community owned forests as a model to sustain working forest lands. We walked away with a new Finance Working Group committed to tackling the challenges of funding a community forest project, as well as action items around communications, governance, and policy.
This year, we are also hosted a field tour to two local community forests. First we visited the Mt. Adams Community Forest in Glenwood, WA, where Jay McLaughlin showed the group a recent prescribed burn area. Next we visited the Hood River County Forest in Oregon, where Doug Thiesies walked us though the forest's management strategy, contribution to the local economy, and connections to recreation.