Kelley Dennings Arlington November 20, 2014 6:00 am

Thought folks might be interested in this.

UW-Extension, in collaboration with the Wisconsin DNR, is pleased to present an upcoming webinar: Tree Huggers & Other Ideas: Trying Out New Ways to Engage Small Woodland Owners, presented by Jessica Leahy, University of Maine.

Dr. Leahy will be sharing her experience with novel programs to engage small woodland owners, with an opportunity for participants to discuss innovative ideas in Wisconsin. How might these ideas work in in Wisconsin and other areas of the Midwest? Tune in to find out and share your ideas!

Date: Monday, December 1st, 2014
Time: 12-1PM (CST)
To register, please visit: Once you register, you will be sent information on how to connect to the webinar.

Presenter: Jessica Leahy is an Associate Professor of Human Dimension of Natural Resources, School of Forest Resources, University of Maine. Her research program encompasses the role of social capital and trust in public involvement, participation, and citizen science; forest landowner decision-making processes; and influence of media and educational campaigns on attitudes and behavior. (

Webinar Description: Tree Huggers & Other Ideas: Trying Out New Ways to Engage Small Woodland Owners

Foresters are equipped to help landowners make decisions about land management which trees should be harvested, how wide a buffer should be placed near a stream, which properties are the highest priorities for an easement, etc. However, many of the challenges that landowners face are human in nature and involve family dynamics. Take for instance the challenges a low-income landowner and his/her family may face in enrolling and participating in a current use program to reduce tax burden. The family must agree on timber harvesting as their primary objective, and then the landowner must navigate a system of service providers, bureaucracies, and paperwork including employing a professional forester to prepare a management plan, participate in federal cost-share programs, periodically work with a logger, and notify the town government. Another decision that landowners face is what to do with their land once they pass away. Here, landowners must make decisions about the future of their family forests and then take legal and communication steps to implement their plan. In these cases, trying out new, almost radical, approaches to implementing conservation initiatives may lead to more efficient and effective outcomes than traditional forestry solutions like management plans and outreach materials. For instance, we created, implemented and evaluated a social work outreach model in southern Maine that included landowner case management, succession planning, peer-to-peer learning, cultural competency training and low-income wood banks. Results of the evaluation and recommendations for future forestry-social work partnerships will be presented. Discussion will focus listening to ideas that you are trying in Wisconsin, and brainstorming ideas for other, innovative ideas that we could all try to encourage stewardship among landowners.

For further information, contact:
Kris Tiles
Natural Resources Educator- Central Wisconsin
Univ of Wisconsin-Extension
phone: 715.261.1254 fax:715.261.1238
Email: [email protected]

Kelley Dennings
United States