FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 13, 2010
WASHINGTON – Maryland State Forester Steven W. Koehn was elected last week to the independent Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc.® (SFI®) Board of Directors.
Koehn is past president of the National Association of State Foresters, which passed a policy statement in 2008 stating that all forest certification programs make positive contributions to forest sustainability. “I welcome the opportunity to work with SFI to raise awareness of the important role certification plays to encourage sustainable management of America’s forests,” he said today.
Koehn has been director and state forester with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Forest Service, for almost 10 years. He played a vital leadership role in the passage of the Maryland Sustainable Forestry Act of 2009, which recognizes that an important way to improve the health of Maryland’s vast Chesapeake Bay ecosystem is through healthy forests.
Koehn said he is particularly interested in working with the U.S. Green Building Council to open up its LEED certified wood credit to all certification programs. “Limiting the forest certification credit, as the LEED rating tool currently does, denies credit to the vast majority of domestic well-managed forests and certified forests,” he said. “This is not good for our forests or our communities.”
The 18-member multi-disciplinary SFI board of directors, which is totally responsible for independent, non-profit SFI Inc., represents environmental, social and economic sectors equally. Current board members include representatives of environmental, professional and academic groups, independent loggers, family forest landowners, public officials, labor and the forest products sector.
“The SFI program values the important contribution made by public land managers like Steve Koehn,” said SFI President and CEO Kathy Abusow. “Steve is a highly motivated and innovative leader whose work in Maryland has received national recognition. The SFI board will benefit from his enthusiasm, experience and commitment to responsible forest management, certification and green building.”
BACKGROUNDER: STEVEN W. KOEHN
Steven W. Koehn has been Director and State Forester of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Forest Service, since February 2001. He is responsible for statewide delivery of all technical and financial forestry assistance on both public and private lands. Earlier this year, he won a Champion of Trees award from the non-profit Arbor Day Foundation for advancing public forestry policy.
His office is responsible for the management of the 200,000-acre/81,000-hectare State Forest system, including the 60,000-acre/24,000-hectare Chesapeake Forest, a unique public and private partnership and Maryland’s first Sustainable Forestry Initiative-Forest Stewardship Council dual-certified forest. Maryland aims to have all its state forests certified by April 2011.
Koehn has been with the Maryland Forest Service since 1984. Before becoming state forester, he served as associate director, supervisor of resource management and project forester. From 1993 to 2002, he also taught forest ecology, forest management, forest stand delineation and forest conservation planning at the School of Professional Studies in Business Education at Johns Hopkins University.
He is currently past president of the National Association of State Foresters, and has held leadership positions in the Chesapeake Bay Program Forestry Workgroup, Society of American Foresters, Maryland Association of Forest Conservancy District Boards, Maryland Forests Association, and the American Forest Foundation’s Center for Conservation Solutions Operating Committee. Koehn received his Bachelor of Science, Forest Science, from Pennsylvania State University. Koehn and his wife have two daughters, and live in Parkton, Maryland.
BACKGROUNDER: SFI INC. BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Board members representing the environmental sector, which includes non-profit environmental or conservation organizations:
- Larry Selzer (Vice Chair), President and CEO, The Conservation Fund
- Tom Franklin, Senior Vice-President, Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership
- John M. Hagan III, President, Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences
- Roger Sedjo, Senior Fellow, Resources for the Future
- Steven A. Williams, President & CEO, Wildlife Management Institute
- Mike Zagata, Executive Director and CEO, Ruffed Grouse Society
Board members representing the social sector, which includes community or social interest groups such as universities, labor, family forest owners or government agencies:
- Mary Motlow, (Secretary-Treasurer) representing family forest landowners
- Richard W. (Dick) Brinker, Dean and Professor, School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences, Auburn University
- Stewart Hardacre, President and Chief Operating Office, Habitat for Humanity Canada
- Steven W. Koehn, Director/State Forester, Maryland Forest Service
- Charles Tattersall (Tat) Smith Jr., Professor, Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto
- William V. (Bill) Street Jr., Director, Woodworkers Department, International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers
Board members representing the economic sector, which includes the forest, paper and wood products industry or other for-profit forest ownership or management entities:
- Robert A. (Bob) Luoto (Chair), representing independent professional loggers and the American Loggers Council
- Matthew Donegan, Co-President, Forest Capital Partners LLC
- Daniel S. Fulton, President and CEO, Weyerhaeuser Company
- Rick R. Holley President & CEO, Plum Creek Timber Company Inc
- Henry H. (Hank) Ketcham, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd.
- Patrick J. Moore, Chairman, President & CEO, Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation