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    VFVC Newsletter - July 2006

    July 1, 2006

    Dear Friend of Vital Forests/Vital Communities:

    This is the second issue of volume three in a series of periodic updates on developments in Blandin Foundation's Vital Forests/Vital Communities initiative. If you would like to be removed from this mailing list, please send a reply email with the subject line UNSUBSCRIBE to vfvc@blandinfoundation.org.

    Ambitious goal to increase number of acres of family forest land with Forest Stewardship Management Plans from 1.3 million to 2.3 million by 2015 endorsed by participants at this year's Family Forest Stewardship: Getting to the Next Million Acres conference.

    On May 25, 2006 the forests of Saint John's University were the backdrop for over 70 family forest land owners, forestry professionals, policy makers and others who discussed efforts to foster and encourage sustainable forestry practices among family forest owners. Conference participants achieved consensus on a strategic vision and action plan to increase the number of acres of family forest land with Forest Stewardship Management Plans from 1.3 million today to 2.3 million by 2015.

    The DNR’s forest stewardship committee has endorsed this ambitious goal and recommended that the chief of the DNR’s Division of Forestry recommend its adoption by the Minnesota Forest Resources Council.

    View the conference proceedings and other conference related materials

    Register now for Building the Capacity of Minnesota’s Wood Products Manufacturing Industry: Harnessing Innovation, August 16-17 at The Lodge at Giants Ridge.

    Join others in the industry to explore how to harness Minnesota’s unique forest resources, cutting-edge design and innovations to open access to new and expanded markets. This year’s keynote presenters are David Salmela, a self-taught “critical regionalist” architect from Duluth who draws on his northern Minnesota roots to combine practicality, ethnicity and playfulness in his designs, and internationally acclaimed visual artist, author, inventor and educator Todd Siler, who will explore how to instill innovation into organizational culture.

    Conference at a Glance

    • Explore how to promote a culture of innovation that permeates your entire business and promotes your company’s success.
    • Hear about design and consumer trends that are informing today’s product development.
    • Learn how to adapt other companies’ best practices to gain a competitive advantage.
    • Learn how to communicate effectively with architects, designers and specifiers who make decisions about the use of wood resources.

    Dovetail Partners releases report: Innovations in Family Forest Certification: What's Happening & What's Needed

    Certification has increasingly become common practice for owners and managers of large forest holdings. However, even as certification on these large ownerships continues to expand, a cost effective certification solution for small landowners in the United States continues to be elusive. A previous Dovetail Report explored the specifics of both the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and American Tree Farm System (ATFS) programs and their relevance to small forest ownerships.

    Innovations in Family Forest Certification provides information about recent research related to the certification of family forestlands in the United States, efforts being made by the ATFS and FSC programs to improve access to certification for small ownerships and some key barriers and areas where continued effort is needed.

    Read the report.

    Innovations in Family Forest Certification is the third of five Dovetail Partners reports commissioned by Blandin Foundation that support Vital Forests/Vital Communities objectives. Upcoming reports will explore ecological classification systems, and opportunities for design and construction innovation in the wood industry.

    Minnesota Forest Legacy Update – Governor Pawlenty announces $15 million, 50,000 acre forest easement project in Itasca and Koochiching counties.

    In the largest conservation project of its kind in Minnesota, The Trust for Public Land (TPL), and Forest Capital Partners, with support from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and The Nature Conservancy, have signed an agreement to protect up to 50,000 acres of working forestland in parts of Itasca and Koochiching Counties. The agreement is the result of efforts initiated by the Minnesota Forest Legacy Partnership, a project catalyzed by the Blandin Foundation’s Vital Forests/Vital Communities Initiative as part of its efforts to reduce losses to Minnesota’s forest resource base caused by conversion, parcelization, and fragmentation of private lands.

    “This announcement is extraordinary in every sense of the word - from its scope and scale to its tremendous conservation outcomes," said The Conservation Fund's Minnesota state director, Tom Duffus. “Thanks to the vision of Governor Pawlenty, the support of the Blandin Foundation and the commitment of Forest Capital Partners, we are demonstrating the incredible results that can be achieved when public and private partners join forces to find balanced conservation solutions in Minnesota.”

    Read the news release issued by The Trust for Public Lands

    Group Certification Evaluation for the Forest Stewardship Program in Minnesota Scientific Certification Systems Gap Analysis Report

    The Minnesota DNR supported by the Blandin Foundation retained Scientific Certification Systems to explore two options for group certification: Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Group Certification and American Tree Farm System (ATFS) Group Certification. The requirements for group managers and for group members for FSC and for ATFS were reviewed and current gaps were identified. The intent of the report is to assist the DNR, the Forest Stewardship Committe and other partners assess costs and benefits of group certification.

    Read the report

    Kathleen Preece wins this year's Society of American Foresters Outstanding Journalism Award

    Kathleen Preece, editor and publisher of BetterFORESTS magazine is the recipient of this year's Society of American Foresters Outstanding Journalism Award. The award recognizes high quality journalistic coverage of topics that increase the American public’s understanding of forestry and natural resources.

    Kathleen received the award for her series of articles on native and exotic pests threatening Minnesota forests, which included two separate articles on earthworms, and one each on white tailed deer, Asian long horned beetles and gypsy moths.

    Kathleen is a member of the Minnesota Forests Resources Council, a former director of Women in Timber, a member of the American Forest & Paper Association’s Minnesota Sustainable Forestry Initiative, and a recipient of the Outstanding Individual of the Year Award from nonprofit association, Giziibii Resource Conservation and Development. She has been a valued partner to the VFVC Initiative through her work with “Goods from the Woods”.

    Thank you for your interest in the Vital Forests/Vital Communities Initiative. For more information, or to share any comments, please feel free to call 218.327.8728 or email: brjoselyn@blandinfoundation.org.

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