By Andrea Watts
It’s fitting that the theme for the first Western Forester issue for 2021 is “Forestry Through the Years.” At least for me, the start of a new year is a chance to reflect on what I learned and accomplished the past year, and what I will carry forward or discard in the new year, whether that is household items, beliefs, or patterns of behavior.
And that’s what the seven articles in this issue offer—a reflection on forestry of the past, present, and what may be carried forward to the next generation. Have we made progress in how we practice forestry? When it comes to being better stewards of the environment, we have, as Derek Churchill and Julie Dieu highlight in their articles. Have we fully recognized those who helped build the forestry industry in the PNW? More work is needed, which Carl Wilmsen shares in his article of the African Americans loggers and their families who made Oregon their home.
This year, I expect there will be much restoration, rebuilding, and reflecting in our lives, whether through the replanting of burned landscapes, rebuilding communities, or in the interactions with neighbors or ourselves. As always, I want to express gratitude to all the authors who contributed articles to this issue; without their volunteering time, the Western Forester would not be possible. And many thanks to the loyal advertisers who continue to support this publication, as well as the PNW SAF members.