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The Oregon Board of Forestry is responsible for forest policy and oversight of forest management practices within the state of Oregonmarker. The board appoints the state forester and oversees the Oregon Department of Forestry. The board also works with private land owners and the Federal Government to promote consistent forest management policies throughout the state.


Oregon began to centralize its forest management in 1905, when the state authorized local fire rangers to patrol Oregon counties and enforce the newly created fire protection laws. Two years later, the state established a temporary board to make recommendations to Oregon legislature regarding forests practices. As an advisory board, it had little power beyond its reports to the legislative assembly.

In 1911, the Oregon legislature formally established a state Department of Forestry with the Board of Forestry as its oversight body. Together these institutions were made responsible for enforcing forestry laws, managing state forest lands, preventing forest fires within the state, encouraging reforestation, and educating the public about good forestry practices.


Today, the Board of Forestry’s mission is "to lead Oregon in implementing policies and programs that promote environmentally, economically, and socially sustainable management of Oregon’s of public and private forests." To achieve this, the Oregon legislature has empowered the board to establish forest policy within the state. The board adopts rules for the use of state and private forest lands consistent with Oregon statute. It regulates forest practices and oversees forestry programs within the state. The board appoints the state forester, and through state forester, oversees the state’s Department of Forestry.

The board facilitates public debate on key issues of forest management. This includes timber harvest rules, environmental regulations, firefighting practices, and management priorities for use of state-owned forest lands. The board works with private land owners, Oregon counties, the United States Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and other Federal agencies to promote consistent management policies and practices for all forest lands within the state. The Board of Forestry and the professional foresters in the Department of Forestry are responsible for managing Oregon's forest lands on behalf of the people of Oregon.

Board membership

The Board of Forestry has seven members appointed by the Governor of Oregon and confirmed by the Oregon State Senate. Members serve a four year term, and are limited to two consecutive terms. Oregon law requires the board to represent the broad interests of the Oregon public. Therefore, no more than three members of the board can receive a significant portion of their income from the forest products industry, and at least one member must reside in each of the three major forest regions of the state.

Forestry program

Sustainable forest management is the board’s long-term goal. To achieve this, forest resources must be used, developed, and protected in a manner that enables people to meet their current environmental, economic, and social needs while ensuring that the needs of future generations will also be met.

The Board of Forestry publishes the Forestry Program for Oregon to guide forest management within the state. Since it was first published in 1977, "sustainability" has remained the forestry program’s central theme. On a statewide basis, sustainable forest management creates a healthy and diverse forest ecosystem that produces abundant timber and other forest products. Habitat to support healthy populations of native plants and animals is maintained. It ensures productive soil, clean water, clean air, and recreational opportunities are protected. This balanced program supports Oregon’s people and their communities both economically and socially. The Forestry Program for Oregon serves as a strategic guide for the Department of Forestry’s day-to-day management decisions.


  1. "Historical Narrative, 1907-1960", Department of Forestry Records Guide, Oregon State Archives, Oregon Secretary of State, June 2000.
  2. "What is the Oregon Board of Forestry?", Forestry Program for Oregon, Oregon Board of Forestry, 2003.
  3. "State Board of Forestry", Oregon Blue Book, Oregon State Archives, Office of the Oregon Secretary of State, 24 February 2008.
  4. Kulongoski, Ted, Speech by Governor Kulongoski at Board of Forestry Meeting, Salem Oregon, 22 October 2004.

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