Honored for more than 30 years of service to the people and forests of Washington, emeritus Washington State University Extension Forester Don Hanley is the newest Forester of the Year.
Chosen by the Washington State Society of American Foresters this spring, Hanley is an educator and guide to forest owners, professionals and residents, helping Washingtonians steward, protect and pass on their natural resources.
“My 30-plus years as an Extension forester gave me the wisdom and experience to help Washington forest owners and professional foresters achieve their goals, and help society get the most from our forests,” said Hanley.
Hanley, of Kirkland, Wash., began his WSU career in 1983, and was based on the campus of the College of Forest Resources at the University of Washington in Seattle.
Retiring in 2009, Hanley continues to volunteer regularly with the WSU Extension Forestry team. He gives guest lectures at field days, checks on Extension’s living snow fence near Davenport, authors and reviews Extension bulletins, and helps mentor Extension faculty members.
Hanley is an active member of the Association of Natural Resource Extension Professionals (ANREP) and the Society of American Foresters (SAF), and travels regularly, camping in forest ecosystems throughout the western U.S.
The Forester of the Year Award recognizes a member for outstanding contributions to their communities and society through the advancement of forestry. Selections are made by a committee of the five previous award winners.
“This award was unexpected, and it’s humbling to know that over the years, others have benefited from my professional and volunteer activities,” Hanley said. “It makes me feel great.”
As an Extension forester, Hanley offers clear, unbiased information to Washingtonians about why our forests are important to all of us. He also shares guidance and ideas to help landowners and managers achieve their goals.
He hopes his Forester of the Year recognition brings to light important work that the small team of Extension foresters do every day, improving the lives and livelihoods of more than 200,000 forest landowners in Washington.
Learn more about Extension Forestry here.