Meet your 2024 Guild Board and MPC

Compiled by Colleen Robinson

Here at the Guild, this time of year graces us with new faces on our Board of Directors and our Membership and Policy Council. Though like snow, it’s not a given. We graciously accept your willingness to share your time and talents with the Guild in these roles. Thank you all for your service. Please help us welcome these new members and take your opportunities to get to know them better! Full bios and contact information are on the webpages linked in this article.

Incoming to our Board of Directors:

Tony D’Amato is a long-time Guild member and Professor at University of Vermont. Tony is the Director of Forestry Program and Director of UVM Research Forests. His research interests center on evaluating the efficacy of traditional and experimental silvicultural strategies at meeting the increasingly diverse range of forest management objectives on public and private land. His numerous publications include the textbook Ecological Silviculture: Foundations and Applications.

Sandra Denyse Jones is an independent rural community development consultant. She primarily works with African-American landowners and communities with low-incomes to preserve the culture and environment while providing economic opportunity and an improved quality of life. Because of her interest in community-based forestry and land ownership retention, Sandra served as a board member of the National Network of Forest Practitioners and the South Carolina Association of Cooperatives and Farmers. She is a founding board member of the Fund for Southern Communities and the Black Family Land Trust. Sandra is on the board of the Maxville Heritage Interpretive Center, which focuses on the history of the community of African American and white loggers in Wallowa County, Oregon.

Ann Duff

Ann Duff is the Fiber Sustainability Manager for WestRock company based in Fernandina Beach, Florida. Ann joined the Guild when she engaged with Guild staff through the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) controlled wood risk mitigation work. She serves as Secretary/Treasurer of the Florida Forestry Association, oversees the Florida Master Logger training program for the Florida SFI Implementation Committee, and is a member of the Florida Forest Council, which is an advisory body to the Florida Forest Service.

Brenda McComb is a Guild member and retired Professor, in the Department of Forest Ecosystems and Society at Oregon State University. She served on the planning committee for the Seeing the Forest for the Queers outreach effort to LGBTQ+ natural resource professionals. Her research focused on the effects of various forest stand and landscape management practices on wildlife. Among over 150 publications are three books, Trees of the Central Hardwoods Forests of North America (with Bob Muller and Don Leopold), Monitoring Animal Populations and their Habitats (with Ben Zuckerberg, Dave Vesely and Chris Jordan) and Wildlife Habitat Management: Concepts and Applications in Forestry.

Incoming Membership and Policy Council members share these brief sentiments and thank you for your recent vote!

Photo of Austin Himes

Austin Himes

“I joined and serve the Forest Stewards Guild because the Guild emphasizes balancing the different values forests provide and recognizes the need for grounding forest management in both science and humility. To me the Guild represents forestry that accounts for the diverse ways forests are important to people.” – Starkville, MS

Jack Singer

“Individuals and society alike depend on functioning forest ecosystems to survive, yet our forests continue to decline in terms of the aerial extent of forest cover, and the average age and size of dominant trees in our remaining forests. I believe that the Forest Stewards’ Guild’s Mission to normalize responsible forest management will help our forests, our society, and our profession to thrive for many generations to come, and I am honored to support the Guild with my service on the Membership and Policy Council.” – Ashland, OR

Photo of Jack Singer at prescribed fire
Sara Kelso

Sara Kelso

“As the future of our forests becomes more and more uncertain, the Guild embodies so much of what I view as important in forestry: continuous learning, responsible forest management, stewardship ethic, the diversity of those who use forests, and putting the forest first.  I’m excited and honored to serve as a member of the Guild’s Membership and Policy Council as the Guild continues to positively influence our forests and our society.” – Marquette, Michigan

Richard Zell Donovan

“For forestry in the USA, I believe it is critical that the Guild support the conservation of critical and rare forest attributes, species, and natural communities, while at the same time knowing we need to have the support of local communities for practical solutions. Humans are part of the ecosystem, and Guild efforts need to constantly reinforce how critical the relationship is between us and forests.” – Jericho, VT.

Jeffrey Dubis

“I appreciate the Guild’s viewpoint that the forests have values that benefit society and that are also independent of society. The Guild’s emphasis on responsible, ecologically based forest management and commitment to education make it a valuable resource for individuals of all interests and backgrounds. The principles of the Guild, the many educational opportunities it offers, and its focus on diversity and inclusion should be an attraction to many of today’s young professionals.”Wanakena, New York.