MEDIA RELEASE: For Immediate Release
CONTACT: Mark Welther, President & CEO, RFFI Inc.
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Redwood Forest Foundation, Inc. and Usal Redwood Forest Company Receive FSC®
2020 Leadership Award
Forest Stewardship Council® recognition for uncommon excellence in the advancement of responsible forest management and conservation. Fort Bragg, CA.
Fort Bragg, CA., November 12, 2020 – The nonprofit Redwood Forest Foundation, Inc. (RFFI) and its subsidiary Usal Redwood Forest Company, LLC (URFC) today received the 2020 Leadership Award from the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC), the world’s most trusted forest certification system. RFFI/URFC were among fifteen recipients, and were awarded in the nonprofit category.
The award recognizes RFFI and URFC for “restoring 50,000 acres of degraded timberland, adding woody debris to 12 miles of salmon habitat and decommissioning 26 miles of streamside roads, while serving as vocal advocates for FSC certification.” RFFI/URFC was nominated for the award by the environmental certification and auditing firm SCS Global Services.
RFFI President and CEO Mark Welther, stated, “The Redwood Forest Foundation, Inc. is very proud to receive this important Forest Stewardship Council award. It acknowledges RFFI’s enormous progress in the Usal Forest toward the type of bold, innovative forest management needed to restore California’s most depleted working forests and the communities that depend upon them.”
“The work we do in the Usal Forest is focused on community acquisition of depleted working forests in order to return control of the resources to the local communities that depend upon them. The goal of our management plan is to restore the forest to productivity and long-term sustainability, while at the same time sequestering carbon, providing wood products, and supporting the local economy,” Welther added.
Linwood Gill, URFC’s Chief Forester reacted to the award: “It is an honor for the entire team at Usal Redwood Forest Company/Redwood Forest Foundation to be awarded the 2020 FSC Leadership Award. We are strong supporters of the principles of the Forest Stewardship Council and have valued our partnership, not only for the recognition of our work but to help us become better land stewards. I am a strong believer of continuing to learn from the forest and what it has to teach us. It is often too easy to become complacent in our work. It is relationships with organizations like the FSC and SCS Global that help us see where there is room for improvement and continue to set a higher bar for ourselves.”
CEO Corey Brinkema, President, Forest Stewardship Council U.S. said, “This organization demonstrates the breadth and impact of the FSC system. We congratulate the Redwood Forest Foundation Incorporated/Usal Redwood Forest Company for their commitment to FSC and responsible forest management. We are thrilled to recognize their good work.”
FSC is celebrating the award winners virtually this year because of restrictions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to receiving an FSC-certified wood plaque and a digital award, winners will be recognized during a December 2, 2020 gathering of FSC North America members.
ABOUT THE REDWOOD FOREST FOUNDATION
The Redwood Forest Foundation, Inc is a private 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1997, dedicated to the triple bottom line principles of Ecology, Economy and Equity. The Usal Redwood Forest Company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of RFFI that owns the Usal Redwood Forest, a 50,000-acre redwood forest located in northern Mendocino County. RFFI is a grass-roots organization that is actively engaging residents of the Redwood Region in the acquisition, restoration and sustainable management of their forest resources. They have received global recognition for their work most recently in the Leonardo DiCaprio HBO documentary on climate disruption, “Ice on Fire.”
ABOUT THE FOREST STEWARDSHIP COUNCIL
The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is a global nonprofit organization that promotes environmentally sound, socially beneficial, and economically prosperous management of forests. FSC sets the standards by which forests are certified, offering assurance to consumers and businesses that the wood products they buy originate from well-managed forests. 4,500 companies and nearly 160 million acres of forestland are certified under FSC in the United States and Canada.
For more information about the award or the Redwood Forest Foundation, visit www.rffi.org/newsroom
l to right: Karen Youngblood, Forest Conservation Specialist, Mark Welther, President & CEO, RFFI & URFC, Jeff H., Forest Operations Mgr, Linwood Gill, Chief Forester, Travis Munoz, Forestry Technician, and Joaquin Quintana, Forestry Technician