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Pacific Northwest Research Station

 
 
 
Pacific Northwest Research Station
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PNW Research Station names interim directors of Prineville center

USDA Forest Service
Pacific Northwest Research Station

Portland, OR: January 28, 2005

Contact:

Source: John Laurence, (541) 750-7357
Media assistance: Yasmeen Sands, (503) 808-2239

PORTLAND, Ore. January 28, 2005. The Pacific Northwest (PNW) Research Station, USDA Forest Service, has named the interim directors of its newest research, development, and application unit, the Western Wildland Environmental Threat Assessment Center in Prineville, Ore.

John Laurence, manager of PNW Research Station’s Ecosystem Processes research program, has been named Interim Director. Becky Kerns, a research ecologist with the Managing Disturbance Regimes research program, has been named Assistant Interim Director. Both officially assumed their new duties on January 24.

“ John and Becky will be vital in laying the foundation for the center to do its important work,” said Thomas Quigley, Station Director. The two will lead a variety of efforts to prepare the center for its permanent staff, including the renovation of office space, establishment of communication lines, and development of an initial work plan for the year with the help of partners and collaborators, he said.

The center’s mission is to predict, detect, and assess environmental threats to the Western United States’ forests and rangelands, collectively referred to as “wildlands.”

“ Wildlands in the West have always been shaped by interacting stresses such as harmful insect infestations, disease, fire and drought,” Laurence said. “As the Forest Service works to improve the health of wildlands to meet the multiple values of our society, it’s important for managers to have accurate and credible predictions of developing problems.”

Larry Timchak, Supervisor of the Ochoco National Forest, where the center is housed, will be working closely with the center. He also will be benefiting directly from its work.

“Forest supervisors have a pretty good grasp of the current problems on the lands we manage, so what we really need is to know what’s coming five years down the road so we can be proactive,” he said.“

The goal of the center is to provide that early warning,” Laurence said.

The center is a joint effort of the National Forest System, State and Private Forestry, and Forest Service Research and Development. Its permanent director is expected to be named in early April, with the recruitment and filling of its staff positions occurring soon thereafter.

Although Laurence and Kerns will spend time in the Prineville area while serving in their interim positions, they will continue to be based at PNW Research Station’s Forestry Sciences Laboratory in Corvallis, Ore. They also will continue to work for their respective research programs.

The PNW Research Station is headquartered in Portland, Ore. It has 10 laboratories located in Alaska, Oregon, and Washington and about 500 employees.


US Forest Service - Pacific Northwest Research Station
Last Modified: Tuesday,18November2014 at11:57:47CST


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