Landscape Stewardship Awards - 2011

Photo: Dick Prather, Oregon Representative of the Public Lands Foundation (holding certificate), is flanked by Jack Shipley (Left), Chairman, and George McKinley (right), Director, of the Southern Oregon Small Diameter Collaborative.

THE PUBLIC LANDS FOUNDATION presents the Southern Oregon Small Diameter Collaborative with its 2011 Landscape Stewardship Award and this Citation.  The Public Lands Foundation grants this recognition to honor private citizens and organizations that work to advance and sustain community-based stewardship on landscapes that include, in whole or in part, public lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management.

The Southern Oregon Small Diameter Collaborative encompasses representation from the timber and biomass industry, forest workers, contractors and practitioners, local (Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands) and national (The Nature Conservancy) environmental organizations, land management agencies (BLM, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and Oregon Department of Forestry), ordinary and extraordinary citizens, and academia.  The Collaborative has been meeting regularly for five years.

The Collaborative has been instrumental in identifying the underlying socio-political underpinnings to successful forest management projects, increasing the utilization and emphasis on biomass and small diameter timber, increasing the community capacity to jointly plan successful projects with the agencies, and substantially improving the political climate and awareness to address Southern Oregon’s forest health issues.  The group has produced the Productive Harmony Standards—a set of ecological, social and economic guidelines—for agency and landowners to craft projects that are likely to get substantial public support (instead of protest, appeal, litigation, etc.).

Throughout the debate and political wrangling over forest management in Western Oregon, the Collaborative has stayed true to its principles to build collaborative capacity and find solutions to address the forest health issues.  In so doing, the group has influenced others in the community in their thinking, approaches and actions toward the agencies.  There is increased agreement within the community on projects and approaches to managing local forests.  Most important for issues that remain (such as the harvest of larger diameter trees and construction of roads), there is a platform for open discussions and implementation of ideas that foster transparency and learning.  Because of the Collaborative’s efforts, the Medford District BLM has received many kudos on its process for involving the public in the design, implementation, and planned monitoring.

The Public Lands Foundation is pleased to present the Southern Oregon Small Diameter Collaborative with its 2011 Landscape Stewardship Award and this Citation for invaluable contributions to the stewardship of America’s public landscapes.

Henri Bisson
September 7, 2011