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Two Ohio Organizations Honored for Outstanding Contributions to Forestry in Ohio

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Forestry honored two Ohio organizations for their outstanding contributions to forestry in Ohio at the Forest of Honor ceremony in Zaleski State Forest last month.

“Forestry is more than just growing trees; it is about the relationships between forests and people,” Division of Forestry Chief Dan Balser said. “This year we are recognizing organizations that promote education about Ohio’s natural resources and inspire people to get involved in efforts to sustain and improve our native forests.”

Trees were planted in the Forest of Honor to recognize the following recipients:

Project Learning Tree-Ohio
Since partnering with the Ohio Division of Forestry in the early 1980s, Project Learning Tree-Ohio’s goal has been to advance environmental literacy, stewardship, and career pathways for Ohio’s youth by using trees and forests as windows on the world. National Project Learning Tree (PLT) was launched as a collaboration between the American Forest Institute, and a non-profit organization comprised of representatives from state departments of education and natural resources agencies from 13 western states in the mid-1970s. In 2017, PLT was transferred to the Sustainable Forestry Initiative, Inc. Today, building upon the success of previous decades, PLT is one of the most widely used PreK-12 environmental education programs in the United States and abroad. PLT-OH continues to demonstrate a highly efficient and effective educational program for Ohio’s youth that aligns with the Ohio Division of Forestry’s goals and objectives.

Ohio Chapter of The American Chestnut Foundation
The Ohio Chapter of The American Chestnut Foundation (TACF) has worked with the Ohio Division of Forestry for many years toward the common goal of restoring this important tree species to its native range in Ohio. The Ohio Chapter was established in 2005 as the 15th chapter of The American Chestnut Foundation. TACF members Carolyn Keiffer, Greg Miller, and Brian McCarthy helped to organize and lead the chapter through the process of creating a new 501-C3 entity. The American Chestnut Foundation collaborated with the Division’s former Marietta Tree Nursery on growing pure chestnut seed from surrounding states. In 2009, a germplasm orchard was established with pure stock at Mohican-Memorial State Forest’s Discovery Forest. Members of the Ohio Chapter have coordinated many tree-planting events and educational outreach activities for the public. Their efforts have led to the collaboration of multiple universities and motivated students to continue research and successional studies.

Induction into the Forest of Honor recognizes individuals, groups, and organizations that have contributed significantly to the accomplishment of the Division of Forestry’s mission and the advancement of Ohio forestry in one or more of the following ways:

  • Develop and/or implement successful improvements to forestry practices that can be used at all levels of forest management in Ohio;
  • Raise public awareness about the benefits of well-managed forest resources;
  • Champion legislation that results in a successful policy change to forestry practices;
  • Educate students in the knowledge, appreciation, and problem-solving skills related to trees and forest management.

The Ohio Division of Forestry promotes the wise use and sustainable management of Ohio’s public and private woodlands. To learn more about Ohio’s woodlands, visit Forestry.ohiodnr.gov. Follow us on Facebook @odnrforestry and on Instagram @odnrforestry (instagram.com/odnrforestry).

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.