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Prescribed Fire for Forest Management Webinar Series

Monthly on Wednesdays in 2023-24 | 8:30 a.m. – 10 a.m. CT

Foresters and land managers have many management tools at their disposal. A tool that’s often overlooked is prescribed fire. Prescribed fire for forest management is important for ​ecosystem health, forest regeneration, wildlife habitat, forest health, and disease control. Join us for insightful discussions with national experts as we discuss forest management using prescribed fire. Learn some of the practical knowledge of where, when, why, and how to apply fire in forest ecosystems. 

Due to the generosity of our sponsors, we are pleased to offer this webinar series for free. Registration is required for all attendees. Connection information will be sent upon registration. Please contact the Wisconsin Forestry Center if you do not receive an email.

UPCOMING WEBINARS

Fire and Game Species

Dr. Jones and Dr. Lashley​ will discuss ways prescribed burning for forest management can impact game species, such as deer, wild ​turkey,​​ ruffed grouse, and woodcock.

This session generously sponsored by:

 

Presenters

Benjamin C. Jones, Ph.D., President and CEO, Ruffed Grouse Society and American Woodcock Society

Ben is CEO of the Ruffed Grouse Society, an organization engaged in forest and wildlife management for over 60 years. Prior to coming to RGS in 2018, Ben was Chief of the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Habitat Division, where he also served as the agency’s Fire Program Manager. He has been an advocate for fire use in habitat management for two decades. His primary interests are impacts of land management practices on wildlife, and the use of forest management to improve wildlife habitat.

Ben holds a Ph.D. in Forestry & Wildlife Science from the University of Tennessee, an M.S. in Wildlife Ecology from Mississippi State, and a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries with a Forest Science minor from Penn State.

Marcus Lashley​, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, UF D.E.E.R. Lab, Department of Wildlife Ecology & Conservation, University of Florida

Dr. Marcus Lashley is an Associate Professor of Wildlife Ecology and Extension Wildlife Specialist in the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation at the University of Florida. Dr. Lashley is co-hosts and produces the Wild Turkey Science, Fire University, and Natural Resources University podcasts. He also develops content for numerous social media platforms and a free comprehensive online prescribed fire training program. In this presentation, Dr. Lashley will cover fire effects on white-tailed deer and wild turkey habitat requirements, fire effects on animal behavior as it relates to forest regeneration, and barriers to implementing prescribed fire to achieve wildlife and forest management objectives.

Moderator

Tommy Gunn, Great Lakes Oak Ecosystem Forester, American Bird Conservancy

Tommy graduated from Southern Illinois University studying Forestry and has worked as a Forester for The Nature Conservancy in Indiana, for the Colorado State Forest Service, and has also worked as a consulting forester. In Tommy’s role with ABC, he works in partnership with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service as a forester for the Oak Ecosystem Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). He provides technical knowledge and assistance to private landowners, foresters, and partners, improving oak ecosystems to benefit focal bird species. He brings his background as firefighter on wildfires and controlled burns throughout the Midwest and western US to the conservation work he does today.​​

 

 

Prescribed Fire in Urban Landscapes

Join John McCabe, Steve Miller, and Brian Schaffler as they discuss how urban landscapes can benefit from the use of prescribed fire.

This session generously sponsored by:

 

Presenters

John McCabe, Director of Resource Management, Forest Preserves of Cook County and President, Illinois Prescribed Fire Council

John is Director of the Department of Resource Management at the Forest Preserves of Cook County, one of the nation’s oldest and largest urban conservation districts, which manages 70,000 acres of public open space within the Chicagoland area. John has a degree in Forestry from Michigan Technological University and has been with the Forest Preserves since 1994. He also currently serves as the President of the Illinois Prescribed Fire Council, which advocates for the safe and continued use of prescribed fire across the state. John is the lead instructor at the Morton Arboretum for the Chicago Wilderness Midwest Ecological Prescription Burn Crew Member training program and has coordinated countless immersive “Alternative Spring Break” experiences for students from colleges across the Great Lakes region to learn how to apply fire in an urban environment. In 2024, the Forest Preserves celebrated its 10th year hosting the UWSP Fire Crew. John enjoys the challenge of implementing prescribed fire in the second-most populated county in the United States, and working with the fantastic team that has made Cook County’s fire program a nationally recognized leader in urban fire.

Steven R. Miller, Regional Director, Fire and Aviation Management, U.S. Forest Service Eastern Region, Vice President, International Association of Wildland Fire

Steve graduated from the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point with a degree in Forest Administration in 1985, and Masters in Ecological Restoration from the University of Florida in 2016. He has since ​worked for a private forestry consultant, the USDA Forest Service, Texas Forest Service, and Florida Division of Forestry and recently retired as the Chief of the Bureau of Land Resources for the St. Johns River Water Management District.  Steve was responsible for directing a multiple use land management program on over 600,000 acres. Most of the lands SJRWMD manages require fire on a 3-5 year interval to sustain them ecologically, so prescribed fire is a major part of his duties.   Steve is active in the North Florida Prescribed Fire Council, serving on the steering committee since 1992. Steve’s newest position is with the USDA Forest Service as the Regional Director of Fire and Aviation in Region 9. He served on the 1998 Governors Task Force on Wildland Fire, Florida Forestry Blue Ribbon Commission, the Florida Georgia Fire Summits (I &II) and is a current member of the Florida Forest Council. He has feet firmly planted in both fire camps (suppression and prescribed fire) and is qualified as and ICT2, OSC2 and an RXB1. He is committed to preparing the next generation of land/fire managers, he regularly travels to teach NWCG classes, and is currently serving as an Adjunct Instructor for the University of Florida. Steve and his wife are parents of two adults; one of whom is a second-generation forester and fire manager.

Brian Schaffler, Assistant Director for Fuels, U.S. Forest Service Eastern Region

Bio coming soon!

Moderator

Michael Tiller, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Forest and Fire Management, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

Michael grew up in Northern California where he enjoyed an active outdoor lifestyle hunting, fishing, camping, and skiing in the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains and coastal redwoods. He enjoyed a 10-year career with Cal Fire serving as a Firefighter and Fire Apparatus Engineer. In 2006, he moved to College Station, Texas where he attended Texas A&M University and earned a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Science. After completing his B.S. degree, he attended Stephen F. Austin State University where he earned an M.S. degree in Environmental Science and Ph. D. in Forestry, both with a research focus on understory fuel flammability in forest and rangeland ecosystems. Michael also served as a Wildland Urban Interface Specialist for the Texas A&M Forest Service for 2-years where he was actively engaged with fuels management and prescribed burning. He recently accepted an Assistant Professor of Forest Ecology position at UW-Stevens Point where he leads the fire science program and serves as an adviser for the UWSP Fire Crew.

Fire and Climate Change

During this webinar, Courtney Peterson will discuss how fire will impact and be impacted by climate change.

This session generously sponsored by:

 

Presenters

Courtney Peterson, Adaptive Silviculture for Climate Change (ASCC) Network; Climate Adaptation Specialist, Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science; Forest and Rangeland Stewardship Department, Colorado State University

Courtney Peterson is a Climate Adaptation Specialist with the Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science (NIACS) and the USDA Southwest Climate Hub, based out of the Forest and Rangeland Stewardship Department at Colorado State University. One of Courtney’s major roles is to serve as the Adaptive Silviculture​ for Climate Change (ASCC) Program Manager, where she focused on disseminating ASCC project findings and translating them into outreach and training opportunities with land managers and scientists working to manage forests for climate change adaptation. She also provides climate science communication and adaptation planning resources nad training to natural resource professionals interested in increasing their skills in applying science-based decisions within an adaptive management context.

Co-Presenter TBA Soon!

Moderator

Greg Edge, Forest Ecologist/Silviculturist, Division of Forestry – Bureau of Forest Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and Co-Host of SilviCast​

Greg is a forest ecologist and silviculturist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources – Division of Forestry, working on statewide silviculture and forest management issues. He has worked for the WDNR for 26 years in a variety of roles; first, as a field forester working on public and private lands, then as the forest geneticist and nursery specialist, and more recently as the area forestry leader supervising the forestry program in the Mississippi River area of western Wisconsin. Greg graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in 1988 with a B.S. in forestry administration and received an M.S. in forest genetics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Greg also is the co-host of the popular forestry podcast, SilviCast​​, alongside Brad Hutnik. ​

 

Case Studies: Prescribed Fire and Red Pine

Dr. Meunier will explore how frequent low to moderate intensity fires shaped mixed conifer forests in ways we never realized. Discover ways to design silvicultural treatments that can increase forest resilience by examining these historic fire-dependent ecosystems. ​

Kyle Gill will present on the collaborative ecocultural fire restoration and relationship building work on Nagaajiwanaang and the U of MN Cloquet Forestry Center. Fire history research, led by Dr. Evan Larson in 2016 and informed by indigenous knowledge holders and 200+ year-old red pine storykeepers, made it clear that the pre-settlement surface fire regime was abundant, human led, and required cross-cultural collaboration for restoration. Our restoration planning took shape in 2019 and commenced on-the-ground in 2022 across 75 acres. General objectives include putting land acknowledgement into action, relationship building between human communities and humans and the Land, and restoring fire as a community member in fire-dependent ecological communities with red pine canopies. Specific objectives vary from unit to unit depending on the age of the red pine and the structure and composition of the community. He approaches land stewardship from training in forestry and disturbance ecology and has been the CFC forest manager since 2015.

This session generously sponsored by:

 

Presenters

Jed Meunier, Ph.D., Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources – Division of Forestry

Jed Meunier is an ecologist and research scientist within the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Division of Forestry. His work relates to the conservation and sustainable management of natural resources. Jed has expertise in disturbance ecology which translates well into management issues whether that is the harvest of wildlife or timber, understanding natural disturbance like fire, or the use of fire to meet particular management objectives. His dissertation research was on fire ecology in northern Mexico investigating spatial and temporal aspects of fire in relation to climate and land-use over several centuries. Jed received his M.S. in the wildlife ecology department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, studying the effects of hunting on declining American woodcock populations. Jed considers himself lucky to spend his time asking questions and through applied research to assist in the management of Wisconsin’s many treasures.

 

 

Kyle Gill, Forest Manager & Research Coordinator, Cloquet Forest Center & Hubachek Wilderness Research Center, University of Minnesota

Kyle has been the Forest Manager and Research Coordinator for the UMN Experimental Forests properties since 2015. In this role, he seeks to build an active forest management and research program that focuses on forests as complex adaptive systems. His forest stewardship philosophies include (1) Trusting that the only thing that endures is change, (2) The Landscape Triad conceptual framework for balancing multiple objectives, (3) Employing forest treatment techniques that mimic evolutionary-scale forest development patterns to promote the capacity for resilience and adaptation to changes in climate and other forms of abiotic, biotic and human-caused uncertainty, and (4) Recognizing that humans are one part of nature and forest ecosystem communities so need to approach land management with humility and respect to our other community members. He earned his M.S. (2014) in Natural Resources Science and Management and B.S. (2007) in Environment and Natural Resources from the University of Minnesota. For his M.S. thesis, he investigated forest development, dynamics, and relationship to climate of jack pine-dominated forests (FDc12, FDc23, and FDc24) in Minnesota’s central floristic region. In his free time, he enjoys many outdoor recreational activities, including cross-country skiing, mountain biking, and wilderness exploration, and philosophizing about life’s great and simple questions.​

Moderator

Eli Anoszko, Ph.D., Vallier Treehaven Ecologist, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

 

 

 

Case Studies: Prescribed Fire and Interfering Vegetation

Join Jack McGowan-Stinski and Jim Elleson to explore ways that prescribed burning can help forest managers deal with interfering vegetation.

This session generously sponsored by:

 

Presenters

Jack McGowan-Stinski, Program Manager, Lake States Fire Science Consortium, Ohio State University

Jack is the Program Manager for the Lake States Fire Science Consortium, funded by the Joint Fire Science Program, and administered through the Ohio State University.  His main duties include managing the activities of LSFSC, and liaising with researchers, land and fire managers, and policymakers across the Lake States Region. Jack received a B.S. in Wildlife Biology from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, and a M.S. in Conservation Biology from Central Michigan University.  Jack’s professional experiences include – Fire Manager and Land Steward for The Nature Conservancy, a Consultant/Contractor and Burn Boss, multiple seasonal positions with USFS and State DNRs. Jack is one of the founders of the Michigan Prescribed Fire Council, actively participates on steering committees/boards for the Coalition of Prescribed Fire Councils, the NE MW Regional Prescribed Fire Council, and MI and MN Councils, and supported the start-up of other State RX Councils in IL, IN, MI, MN, OH, PA, and WI. When not sharing fire and natural resource management stories, Jack will disappear for as long as possible into the wilds of MN and WI to explore, hunt, fish, kayak, snowshoe, and immerse in a wide variety of arts and crafts projects.

Jim Elleson, Founder, Quercus Land Stewardship Services

Moderator

TBA

 

Workforce Development

Where have all the burners gone? Lee Jensen and Curtis Wayka will discuss strategies to build up the workforce necessary for forest and fire management.

This session generously sponsored by:

 

Presenters

Ron Waukau, Forest Manager, Menominee Tribal Enterprises

Ron Waukau has had a long career at Menominee Tribal Enterprises, starting in 1988. Ron has served multiple appointments across Menominee forest operations prior to becoming Forest Manager.

Lee Jensen, Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Fire Management Officer, U.S. Forest Service

Curtis Wayka, Prescribed Fire/Fuels Specialist, Menominee Tribal Enterprises

Moderator

Paul Priestley, Wildland Fuels Specialist, Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa

Paul is an alumni of the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, graduating in 2017 with a B.S. degree in Wildland Forest Science and Forest Ecosystem Restoration. He spent two years as the Fire Effects Officer with the UWSP Fire Crew. Since his time at University, Paul has worked for the U.S. Forest Service on the Great Lakes Wildland Fire Module, for the Nature Conservancy as a Prescribed Fire Coordinator, and currently works for the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa as the Wildland Fuels Specialist.

PREVIOUS WEBINARS

Fire and Traditional Ecological Knowledge Beyond the Lake States

Join Dr. Serra J. Hoagland, CWB, Acting National Program Lead Tribal Research, Rocky Mountain Research Station, U.S. Forest Service, and Vern Northrup, Retired Fire Operations Specialist, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Artist, and Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Elder, to discuss Fire and Traditional Ecological Knowledge Beyond the Lake States.

This session generously sponsored by:

​​

 

 

Presenters

Serra J. Hoagland (Pueblo of Laguna), Ph.D., CWB, Acting National Program Lead Tribal Research, Rocky Mountain Research Station, U.S. Forest Service

Dr. Serra Hoagland (Laguna Pueblo) serves as the Tribal Relations Specialist for the USDA Rocky Mountain Research Station of the Forest Service. She focuses on building partnerships with tribes and intertribal organizations, mentoring students in natural resources, and conducting research that is relevant to Native communities. In 2020, Dr. Hoagland was selected as the most promising scientist by the American Indian Science & Engineering Society. Over the years, she has been actively involved with the Society of American Foresters, the Intertribal Timber Council, the Native American Fish & Wildlife Society as well as The Wildlife Society. ​​

Vern Northrup, Retired Fire Operations Specialist, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Artist, and Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Elder

Vern Northrup spent 24 years as a Fire Operations Specialist for the Bureau of Indian Affairs, working on wildfires both across the West and close to home in Minnesota. Vern is a Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Elder and a visual storyteller. His photographs and teachings offer Anishinaabe perspectives of the place of humans in the world, the seasons, and more. He uses photography as a tool to educate both himself and the viewer about the rhythms of nature, the preservation of tradition, and the relationship between resilience and sustainability.

Moderator

Steven R. Miller, Regional Director, Fire and Aviation Management, U.S. Forest Service Eastern Region, Vice President, International Association of Wildland Fire

Steve graduated from the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point with a degree in Forest Administration in 1985, and Masters in Ecological Restoration from the University of Florida in 2016. He has since ​worked for a private forestry consultant, the USDA Forest Service, Texas Forest Service, and Florida Division of Forestry and recently retired as the Chief of the Bureau of Land Resources for the St. Johns River Water Management District.  Steve was responsible for directing a multiple use land management program on over 600,000 acres. Most of the lands SJRWMD manages require fire on a 3-5 year interval to sustain them ecologically, so prescribed fire is a major part of his duties.   Steve is active in the North Florida Prescribed Fire Council, serving on the steering committee since 1992. Steve’s newest position is with the USDA Forest Service as the Regional Director of Fire and Aviation in Region 9. He served on the 1998 Governors Task Force on Wildland Fire, Florida Forestry Blue Ribbon Commission, the Florida Georgia Fire Summits (I &II) and is a current member of the Florida Forest Council. He has feet firmly planted in both fire camps (suppression and prescribed fire) and is qualified as and ICT2, OSC2 and an RXB1. He is committed to preparing the next generation of land/fire managers, he regularly travels to teach NWCG classes, and is currently serving as an Adjunct Instructor for the University of Florida. Steve and his wife are parents of two adults; one of whom is a second-generation forester and fire manager.

Please register to access a recording of this session.

Fire and Traditional Ecological Knowledge in the Lake States

Join Ron Waukau, Forest Manager at Menominee Tribal Enterprises, to discuss Fire and Traditional Ecological Knowledge in the Lake States.

This session generously sponsored by:


Presenters

Ron Waukau, Forest Manager, Menominee Tribal Enterprises

Ron Waukau has had a long career at Menominee Tribal Enterprises, starting in 1988. Ron has served multiple appointments across Menominee forest operations prior to becoming Forest Manager.

 

 

Moderator

Paul Koll, Tribal Forest Manager, Stockbridge-Munsee Community

Paul Koll is the Forest Manager for the Stockbridge-Munsee Community and the Chair of the Wisconsin Tribal Conservation Advisory Council’s Forestry Committee. Over the past 20 years, he has worked in all aspects of forest management from seedling production to the final harvests. Degrees from both the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Michigan Tech have helped to foster his ecological approach to forest management.

 

 

Please register to access a recording of this session.

Restoring Savanna Communities in Wisconsin with Rx Fire at Ecologically Meaningful Scales

Join Jeb Barzen and Brendan Woodall as they discuss the implications of using prescribed fire to restore savanna landscapes.

Jeb Barzen will focus on addressing the potential for restoring savanna communities in Wisconsin at ecologically meaningful scales through use of prescribed fire and through expanding social tools such as carbon credits or environmental labels. Most vegetative communities in Wisconsin, including a variety of savanna communities, are fire-dependent and the Wisconsin landscape is approximately 85% privately owned. A 10-fold increase in the implementation of prescribed fire is needed and our current capacity to implement those fires is limited by the number of trained people to burn safely and the incentives necessary to allow private landowners to deploy Rx fire sustainably over decades and across broad landscapes to achieve ecologically significant impacts.  ​  ​​ ​​

Brendan Woodall will dive into the details on what he does as a Private Lands Biologist through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and discuss how fire is used as a restoration and management tool in savanna communities on private land. There are many barriers and limitations to actually being able to get fire on the ground safely, such as socially, financially, and logistically.

This session generously sponsored by:


Presenters

Jeb Barzen, M.S., B.S.; Chair, Private Lands Conservation, LLC; Chair, Wisconsin Prescribed Fire Council; Adjunct Assistant Professor, UW-Madison Department of Planning and Landscape Architecture; Lecturer, UW-Madison Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies​​

Jeb has spent most of his 36-year career studying birds and applying ecosystem restoration tools in wetlands, grasslands, and savannas worldwide. This includes conducting over 770 prescribed burns throughout the Midwe​st, in Vietnam and in the Russian Far East. While teaching prescribed burning in Russia, Jeb  can uniquely claim to be the only person to be quoted by Pravda as an ‘expert American arsonist.’ Early on in his career, it became clear that the most interesting projects would last well beyond his own lifetime, so Jeb soon began to focus on teaching, mentoring, and advancing the tools that we depend upon to improve ecosystem restoration – chief among them – prescribed burning and prescribed burn practitioners. To that end, Jeb recently collaborated with the Wisconsin Prescribed Fire Council, the Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, UW Arboretum, The Wisconsin Chapter of The Nature Conservancy and numerous local NGOs to create a course on fire ecology and prescribed burn implementation at the UW-Madison which currently matriculates 24 students each ye​ar.

Brendan Woodall, Wisconsin Private Lands Biologist, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program

Brendan grew up in Missouri, where he attended the University of Missouri – Columbia and graduated with a B.S. in Forestry and a B.S. in Fisheries and Wildlife. Brendan first cut his teeth with learning and implementing prescribed fire in college. Since graduating, he has worked for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – PFW Program helping private landowners restore and enhance wildlife habitat in central Wisconsin. He has assisted with over 50 prescribed burns and 13 wildfires totaling over 10,000 acres on both public and private land. This experience helps him to consider the potential for prescribed fire as a management tool when creating wildlife habitat restoration plans​.

 

Moderator

Michael Demchik, Ph.D., Professor of Forestry, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

Michael Demchik grew up in southern West Virginia in unincorporated Pond Fork. With the freedom to explore the outdoors, a mountain on one side and a stream on the other, a future career in natural resources just made sense. Demchik is cu​rrently a professor of silviculture at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. His previous positions included an Extension Forester specializing in farm forestry in Minnesota, a state Maple Syrup and Non-Timber Forest Products specialist in Pennsylvania, and a number of other jobs ranging across federal, state, and private industries in West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

 

 

Please register to access a recording of this session.

Fire ​into the Future: Utilizing Geospatial Technology to Identify and Categorize Fire in the Southeast

Join us as we explore the ecology of southern pines, the reintroduction of ​​fire into fire-adapted ecosystems, and the legacy of prescribed fire and how the “old” links with the “new” with burning in longleaf pine. Participants will discover the importance of the Tall Timbers Private Lands Fire Initiative and hear about​ the cutting edge technology of the Southeast fire map, which helps​ with both on the ground management and re​search.

Dr. Nowell’s talk will focus on detecting fires in the Southeast United States, and will include discussion of  satellite detection difficulties, an overview of current products across this region, and future scientific improvements of satellite-based datasets to detect even more fire. In particular, discussion will focus on the Southeast FireMap product – a product that is based on the USGS Landsat Burned Area dataset, but is uniquely tailored to the Southeast US. Preliminary study results that illustrate the utility of using Southeast FireMap to answer scientific questions will also be shared.​

This session generously sponsored by:


Presenters

Geo​rge Jensen, Southwest Georgia Prescribed Burn Association Coordinator, Tall Timbers Research Station & Land Conserva​ncy ​

George Jensen, originally from Savannah, Georgia, grew up in Berlin, Wisconsin. George attended the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point, where he studied Wildland Fire Science and Conservation Biology under Dr. Ron Masters. ​During this time, George had heavy involvement in the UWSP interagency fire crew, where he was an officer for two years; George burned with the crew in Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Chicago, Florida, Georgia, and, South Carolina. George also worked for the federal government on a fuels module and helit​​ack crew and did fire with WDNR. Upon graduation, George took a job as a Conservation Biologist for the Endangered Resources section of the WNDR and was also on the state burn team. George was also private lands biologist for the private sector in central Wisconsin. George attended graduate school for forestry at Mizzou under Dr. Ben Knapp. George worked his master’s tenure at the Jones Center at Ichauway, where he researched how Resistance, Resilience, and Transition silviculture treatments affect fire behavior and effects in longleaf pine ecosystems during atypically hotter and drier days. He also studied fine-scale fire effe​cts in patches of longleaf pine. Currently, George works for ​Tall Timbers as the Southwest Georgia Prescribed Burn Association Coordinator and is an Adjunct professor of ecology at Thomas University in Thomasville, Georgia.

Holly Nowell, Ph.D., Project Research Scientist, Tall Timbers Research Station & Land Conserva​ncy

Dr. Holly Nowell, born and raised in Wichita, Kansas, was interested in weather from an early age. She held several internship positions at the National Weather Service Office located in Wichita, and at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, before graduating with her bachelor’s degree in Earth and Planetary Science from Washington University in St. Louis. She continued her studies at Florida State University where she obtained two master’s degrees, one in Geographic Information Systems and the other in Meteorology, and a doctorate in Meteorology. Her thesis and dissertation, under the guidance of Dr. Guosheng Liu, focused on studying the backscatter radiation of aggregate snowflakes in the microwave region. Dr. Nowell switched gears with her postdoctoral position under Dr. Christopher Holmes, also at Florida State University, to focus on the issue and difficulty in the satellite detection of fires in the Southeast United States. As a postdoc, she also participated in NASA/NOAA FIREX-AQ field campaign by providing ground support and conducting field research into pre- and post-burn fuels at the Blackwater River State Forest, Florida. Additional studies included examining the impacts of emissions from smoke plumes resulting from prescribed burning on air quality and public health in South Florida. Currently, Dr. Nowell works for Tall Timbers as a Project Research Scientist on the Southeast FireMap project, a joint venture with the USGS to improve satellite detections of fires in the Southeast US region using Landsat and Sentinel satellites. ​

Moderator

Michael Tiller, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Forest Ecology, College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

Michael grew up in Northern California where he enjoyed an active outdoor lifestyle hunting, fishing, camping, and skiing in the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains and coastal redwoods. He enjoyed a 10-year career with Cal Fire serving as a Firefighter and Fire Apparatus Engineer. In 2006​​​, he moved to College Station, Texas where he attended Texas A&M University and earned a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Science. After completing his B.S. degree, he attended Stephen F. Austin State University where he earned an M.S. degree in Environmental Science and Ph. D. in Forestry, both with a research focus on understory fuel flammability in forest and rangeland ecosystems. Michael also served as a Wildland Urban Interface Specialist for the Texas A&M Forest Service for 2-years where he was actively engaged with fuels management and prescribed burning. He recently accepted an Assistant Professor of Forest Ecology position at UW-Stevens Point where he leads the fire science program and serves as an adviser for the UWSP Fire Crew.   

Please register to access a recording of this session.

Fire and Great Lakes Red Pine Woodlands: Busting Myths and Advancing Management

This presentation will focus on what we think we know and what we actually know concerning natural disturbance and development of red pine woodlands and how this knowledge can inform and evolve silviculture and management.

This session generously sponsored by:

Presenter

Brian J. Palik, Ph.D., Science Leader for Applied Forest Ecology, Northern Research Station, U.S. Forest Service

Brian Palik is Science Leader for Applied Forest Ecology with the USDA Forest Service-Northern Research Station, in Grand Rapids, MI. He has a B.S. in biology from Alma College, and M.S. in plant ecology from Michigan State University, and a Ph.D. in forest ecology from Michigan State University. He works broadly on questions related to ecological sustainability and adaptability of managed forests through use of operational-scale and long-term silviculture research.

 

 

 

 

Moderator

John Schwingel, Wisconsin Fire Manager, The Nature Conservancy

John works across the state providing overall fire management supervision and coordination of Wisconsin’s fire program. He is responsible for advancing the use of fire as a management tool on Conservancy and partner lands acr​​oss high priority resilient landscapes in the state. John serves as the fire liaison with state and federal agencies and other partners, instructor of NWCG training courses, mentor for aspiring burn practitioners, and is currently serving as a type 2 burn boss to crew member.

John received a BS in Resource Management from UW-Stevens Point and has worked for the Conservancy since 2020. He came to the Conservancy after completing a 31-year career with the Wisconsin DNR in various forestry and fire management roles. He is grateful for being able to combine his passion for natural resources and emergency management for decades as a career and as a former volunteer fire department member.​​

Please register to access a recording of this session.

Oak and Fire in the Eastern U.S.

Dr. Charles Ruffner will introduce the history of fire and discuss best practices when reintroducing prescribed burning to forests and prairies of the Central Hardwoods region. Dr. Wayne Clatterbuck will examine the specific fire treatments and timings to affect sound oak management.

This session generously sponsored by:

Presenters

Charles M. Ruffner​, Ph.D., Professor of Forestry, ​​Southern Illinois University

Charles M. Ruffner, Ph.D., specializes in old-growth forest ecology and fire history in his research and teaching, and is deeply engaged in service with professional and community groups at multiple scales. Charles’ SIUC Fire Dawg crew works closely with local agencies, landowners, and interest groups to reintroduce prescribed burning to forests and prairies of the Central Hardwoods region. He currently serves as an Illinois Nature Preserves Commissioner, and held recent leadership roles with the Oak Woodlands and Forest Fire Consortium and the Illinois Prescribed Fire Council. Charles leads study abroad groups to Ireland, Scotland, and Bavaria and completed two overseas sabbaticals in Ireland and Afghanistan. His involvement with farmers and foresters across the developing world includes work with both military and civilian personnel in Venezuela, Panama, Afghanistan, Dominican Republic, Lithuania, and Morocco.​

Dr. Wayne K. Clatterbuck, Professor, Forest Management and Hardwood Silviculture, University of Tennessee-Knoxville

Dr. Wayne K. Clatterbuck is a Professor of Silviculture and Forest Management at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. He holds an appointment with UT Extension. His responsibilities are in forest management education and include assistance to the county extension network in forestry, coordinator of the Tennessee Master Logger Program, forest landowner education, and continuing education for forestry professionals. He has been with the university since 1995. The primary research interest of Dr. Clatterbuck is in forest stand dynamics focusing on the ecological changes in species composition, stand structure and development during forest succession and following forest disturbance. His studies center in hardwood silviculture, particularly oak species, from obtaining regeneration to intermediate stand treatments and rehabilitating undesirable cutover stands. He is also interested in mixed shortleaf pine-hardwood silviculture including disturbance ecology. He directs several graduate students and is the instructor for the undergraduate and graduate silviculture classes.​

Moderator

Brad Hutnik, Forest Ecologist/Silviculturist, Division of Forestry – Bureau of Forest Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Brad Hutnik is a forest ecologist / silviculturist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. Since 2012, Brad has served as a member of the WDNR Silviculture​​ Team.  As such, Brad currently works statewide on forest ecology and silviculture issues and has been involved with prescribed fire as a management tool throughout his career. Brad previously served as the Lower Wisconsin State Riverway forester (2002-2012) and worked as a staff forester at Clark Forestry, Inc. (1997-2002). Brad received a bachelor’s degree in forest management at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in 1997. He is a Certified Silviculturist (USDA-FS) and co-host of UWSP’s SilviCast podcast.​​

 

 


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CONTINUING EDUCATION

The live and recorded webinar series has been pre-approved for the following:​

4.0 CEUs can be earned through the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) under the following conditions:

  • SFI CEUs can be earned in 2024 only.
  • Participants must record their attendance in a minimum of 5 sessions in the 2024 calendar year.​

WEBINAR SERIES PARTNERS

The Wisconsin Forestry Center is proud to have webinar series partners, who spread the word about this fantastic educational opportunity. Learn how you can become a partner by contacting the Wisconsin Forestry Center.