Keith Receives 2018 Forest Stewardship Field Award

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cooperative Forestry Director Steve Koehn, left, with 2018 Forest Stewardship Field Forester Kevin Keith. Photo by Andrew Owen, Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management. Forest Service photo.

The Forest Service’s Forest Stewardship Program partners with state forestry agencies to assist private landowners in actively managing their forests. Every two years the Forest Stewardship Program recognizes a state forestry agency field forester who has made a significant contribution to the Forest Service mission of sustaining the nation’s forests and grasslands.

Kevin Keith has been recognized as the 2018 Forest Stewardship Field Forester. As a senior area forester with the Virginia Department of Forestry, he manages a multi-county work area and supervises four employees. As a field forester, he provides exceptional service to private forest landowners. His 2016 accomplishments highlight his passion for sustaining healthy private forests: he wrote 24 forest stewardship management plans to help private landowners better manage 9,048 acres of forestland. He also wrote 92 other management plans covering 2,752 acres, implemented 725 forest restoration activities on 21,686 acres and planted 8,552 trees on 236 sites. Keith annually uses more than $100,000 in federal and state cost-share funds to promote healthier forests, including increased pre-commercial pine thinning and site preparation prior to planting.

Actively managed private forests provide local jobs, timber revenue, wildlife habitat, watershed protection, recreation opportunities and many other public benefits. Keith’s assistance to private forest landowners is invaluable to the public good.

 

 

 

 

2017-2018 Kevin Keithrecognized as 2018 Forest Stewardship Field Forester

Become a Project Learning Tree Certified Educator

Be engaged in a hands-on workshop for both formal and non-formal educators

 Investigate environmental topics with indoor and outdoor activities

 Receive PLT’s PreK-8 Environmental Education Activity Guide, correlated to national and state   academic standards . Click here to find out more: VMNH workshop flyer 11-3-2017 (003)

“The most amazing and helpful book in the universe! The students love the activities. It helps make learning more engaging for students, and in turn less stressful for me.”

– Rachel Hill, 7th Grade Science Teacher, Salem Church Middle School, Richmond, Virginia

Youth Conservation Leadership Institute Accepting Applications!

Youth Conservation Leadership Institute(YCLI) is a recognition program for students that focuses on volunteer service and environmental stewardship.

 YCLI began as an expansion of Youth Conservation Camp in an effort to keep students engaged in the environmental topics introduced at camp.

YCLI offers high school students interested in environmental conservation and stewardship an opportunity to build leadership skills and connect with local mentors involved with environmental issues.

Students choose projects that they are interested in to carryout in their community.

As a participant in the Youth Conservation Leadership Institute, students will be required to complete a minimum of 20 hours of community service with a focus in the natural resources conservation field.  Students are encouraged to focus work with the local Soil & Water Conservation District but any work that contributes to pollution prevention, natural resources conservation, and promotion of environmental literacy will be accepted.  All projects must have a confirmed mentor which may be a local SWCD, government agency, community leader, or similar local organization.

YCLI is open to any Virginia high school student committed to the entirety of the program including:

  • Completion of at least 20 community service hours to be approved by the VASWCD staff.
  • Submission of one interim and final report/presentation on the community work completed.
  • Attendance at the final recognition program to be held March 2018.
  • Read an assigned book on environmental leadership for a group discussion

 

Click to access the 2017 -2018 YCLI Application and applications are due to me by Aug 18th, 2017.  For additional information visit http://vaswcd.org/ycli

 

Workshop: Focusing on Land Transfer to Generation “NEXT”

You value your forest and/or farmland for multiple reasons such as wildlife, privacy, recreation, timber, hunting or the scenic qualities. Are you prepared to pass the environmental and heirloom values rooted in your forest to the next generation? Without breaking it up? Click here to access the Online Registration Form 2017 Radford Generation Next

While there is a price to planning an orderly transfer of land to the next generation, there is also a cost of not planning that may put your land’s future in jeopardy. If you don’t have a plan, your wishes for your land and legacy will be lost. By researching and planning ahead of time, you can ensure your wishes are met and minimize the financial costs and emotional challenges while securing your woodland legacy for generations to come.

Land may be your biggest asset. Make sure your actions support the family’s values. This award winning and nationally recognized program will get you started on the right path. Please join us for a hands-on workshop with free legal guidance from professionals experienced in intergenerational land transfer and landowner testimonials of estate planning steps and strategies they have used.

Speakers include legal and financial experts experienced in estate planning as well as natural resource professionals who work with landowners to conserve land and plan the future.

The program “Focusing on Forestland Transfer to Generation ‘NEXT’” is being offered in Radford this year from 12:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. on August 22 and 29 at the SELU Conservancy. Participants should attend both dates. Dinner will be included along with reading and workshop materials. A registration fee of $70 covers up to two participants from the same family.

To register online, visit http://forestupdate.frec.vt.edu and click the “Online Registration” tab at the top of the page. The deadline to register is August 8.  For more information, contact Jennifer Gagnon at 540-231-6391 or jgagnon@vt.edu.

Persons with disabilities who desire any assistive devices, services or other accommodations to participate in this activity may also contact Jennifer during the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to discuss accommodations, no later than August 8. *TDD number is (800) 828-1120.

The workshop receives financial support from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

Best Management Practice Applications Now Being Accepted for 2017-2018

             The Blue Ridge Soil & Water Conservation District located at 1297 State Street, Rocky Mount, VA is currently accepting applications for assistance with installation of agricultural best management practices that are designed to conserve soil and protect water quality.

July 1, 2017 began our new fiscal year and agriculture producers who are considering signing up for assistance this year are encouraged to do so as soon as possible.  Since funding is limited, all practices must be signed-up prior to implementation and are subject to prioritized ranking for approval. 2017-2018 Cost-Share applications will be accepted July 17, 2017 through close of business on Friday, August 4, 2017.  If cost-share is still available after this first sign-up round, a second sign-up round of cost-share may be offered at a later date.  The following is a list of some of the practices available for cost share, however, it is not an exhaustive list.

  • Reforestation of Erodible Crop Land & Pasture Land
  • Grazing Land Protection (stream exclusion, water fountains, well, pipeline and fencing)
  • Harvestable Cover Crop
  • Non-Harvestable Cover Crop
  • Continuous No-Till
  • Animal Waste Control Facility
  • Nutrient management Plan Writing
  • Split Application of Nitrogen on Corn using Pre-Sidedress Nitrate Test
  • Late Winter Split Application of Nitrogen on Small Grains
  • Riparian Vegetative or Forested Buffers

 

For more information regarding water quality and erosion control best management practices, please contact Michael Tabor (Conservation Technician) at (540) 483-5341 ext. 122.