Landscape Stewardship Awards - 2008

PLF Presentation of 2008 Landscape Stewardship Award to Joyce Dearstyne, Executive Director of Framing Our Community Left to Right: Ed Spang (VP PLF), Stephanie Connolly (BLM Cottonwood Field Mgr), Dave Summers (ID Dept of Lands), Joyce Dearstyne, Executive Director of Framing Our Community, Jim Rehder (ID County Commission), Gil Bates (Ida-Lew Economic Development Council), and Heather Leach (ID Department of Labor)

FRAMING OUR COMMUNITY, based in Elk City, Idaho, has helped with forest and watershed restoration in partnership with the BLM Cottonwood Field Office, including accomplishments in BLM’s fuels, forestry, riparian and fisheries programs.  It has helped implement several portions of BLM’s National Fire Plan.  Since 2003, it has hired and trained local workers to conduct boundary marking, timber cruising, thinning, pruning and hand piling.  And, it has contributed to the local economy by hiring contractors and promoting businesses that utilize and market small wood byproducts.

With outside grant funding, Framing Our Community completed an aquatic and riparian restoration project on BLM land and took the initiative to expand similar restoration efforts on adjacent private lands.  During these projects, Framing Our Community employed local workers as well as the Montana Conservation Corps, utilized products from the small business incubator (thus supporting local industry), and provided educational outreach through the local school.

In 2007, Framing Our Community provided critical assistance in obtaining trained people for field data collection for the biological, botanical and cultural resources programs.  Without Framing Our Community’s assistance, BLM would not have completed required data collection, and proposed projects would have been unnecessarily delayed for at least one or more years.

Through Framing Our Community’s forest restoration and community retraining program, it works to restore habitat, improve watershed conditions, train displaced workers in methods of forestry that create the least amount of disturbance, study new methods of extraction and develop new equipment, all of which is monitored and assessed.  Their integrated approach to community-based forestry creates a process that begins in the woods with forest and watershed restoration, fuels reduction for fire safety, and ends with the manufacturing of value-added wood products for urban markets.
Framing Our Community conducted defensible space treatments on private property that saved many homes during the Poe Cabin Fire in 2007.  From this experience, they immediately realized the opportunities for an educational video with national application and took the steps necessary to produce it using an Emmy award winning videographer.

This is exactly the type of community-based landscape stewardship that the Public Lands Foundation was thinking of when it established this awards program.  The Public Lands Foundation is pleased to grant Framing Our Community this Landscape Stewardship Award.