In the wake of remote work during the pandemic, a study of human resources executives found that most are struggling to get staff back into the office. Here is one solution: move into a mass timber building.
To commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service (MLK Day), over 80 students from Alabama and Georgia attended the 2024 Jr. Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources & Related Sciences (MANRRS) Leadership Institute. Auburn University’s and Tuskegee University’s MANRRS programs led the three-day program to engage high school students and expose them to the exciting opportunities and pathways in the forest and conservation sector.
The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) is celebrating being named a recipient of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service’s historic $1 billion investment in urban forests. This transformative funding aims to plant and maintain trees, combat extreme heat, and address climate change while improving access to nature in urban and suburban areas across the United States.
Paul Johnson had a good job and was happy with his work as the Texas A&M Forest Service's urban and community forestry program leader. But in 2021, when he heard about a position with Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) as Senior Director of Urban and Community Forestry, he was intrigued. After an interview and talking to his colleagues about SFI, Johnson decided that the opportunity to participate in developing SFI's Urban and Community Forest Sustainability Standard (UCFSS) (SFI 2023a) was too good to pass up.
Participating in the 2nd World Forum on Urban Forests (WFUF) alongside Kathy Abusow, President and CEO of SFI, made me feel like we were letting the whole world know that SFI is active in urban and community forestry. The forum, held in late October in Washington DC, had the theme “Greener, Healthier and Happier Cities for All.”
Earlier this fall, I had an amazing day at the Austin Carey Forest Campus, which is part of the University of Florida in Gainesville. The morning consisted of a tour of the 2,000-acre Austin Carey Forest in the company of nearly 40 architecture students from the University of Miami School of Architecture and Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. We inspected and learned about various managed sections in the forest.
The Canada Green Building Council’s Green Building Day on the Hill was a chance for leaders in the building sector to meet with public servants and Parliamentarians to discuss how green building can help advance critical priorities like job growth, innovation, and environmental sustainability while supporting Canada’s climate objectives.
This year’s SAF National Convention was one for the books! Hosted in Sacramento, California, from October 25-28, five members of the SFI Team joined panels, workshops, and discussions exploring the proud legacy of forestry and the ongoing challenges and opportunities facing foresters and natural resources professionals. We were also a proud exhibitor, sharing more about our forest-focused activities and professional development offerings for SAF members and beyond!
The world has woken up to the urgent need for climate action and the critical role of nature-based solutions in mitigating and adapting to climate change. This transformational shift signifies a broader global recognition of the importance of forests and other natural systems in addressing the climate crisis. I had the opportunity to be part of this transformational shift recently at two major events in the same week: Canada’s National Forest Week and Climate Week NYC.
From September 14–17, the Anacostia Community Museum hosted the Women’s Environmental Leadership Summit 2023 to explore the multiple ways in which environmentalism is practiced, pathways to environmental leadership, and best practices for community-centered advocacy and activism.
Congratulations to Catherine Langille, Indigenous Relations Coordinator at SFI/Project Learning Tree Canada, for winning a 2023 Skills Awards for Indigenous Youth at a National Forest Week celebration in Ottawa on September 20. The awards were presented by the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) in partnership with the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers (CCFM). The awards celebrate Indigenous youth for their achievements and aspirations in the forest products sector.
At the end of September, Canada commemorates Truth and Reconciliation Week 2023, culminating in the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day on September 30. In the US, Indigenous Peoples Day is celebrated on Monday, October 9, followed by Native American Heritage Month throughout November.
In the ever-evolving landscape of corporate sustainability, the pursuit of greener and more eco-conscious buildings has undergone a remarkable transformation. Gone are the days when the focus was solely on operational energy efficiency, with most sustainability professionals acknowledging that a building’s environmental impact extends beyond its HVAC systems and insulation.
Over the past year, I have been participating in various professional development webinars offered by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), Project Learning Tree (PLT), and PLT Canada, including sessions on Making a Good First Impression, Resume Building 101, and a Workforce Panel.