In recognition for his exceptional work as a Tree Farm Inspector and his outreach efforts in promoting sustainable forestry across Washington State, Tom Westergreen received the Regional Outstanding Inspector of the Year 2017 award from the American Tree Farm System (ATFS).
“I was very surprised the local committee nominated me,” Westergreen said. “It’s very kind of them to recognize the work I have done over the years.”
Since the 1980s, Westergreen has volunteered as an ATFS Tree Farm Inspector, and he currently serves as the Region Inspector Coordinator. In addition, he is responsible for developing and overseeing the Whatcom Women in Timber “Woods Tour,” an annual event that for more than 30 years has taken the public out to the woods to see sustainable forestry management first-hand and meet the professionals who work out in the woods
“Tom is one of the most well-known and conscientious foresters in Whatcom County,” said Barbara Brenner, a Whatcom County Councilmember and frequent attendee of the Woods tour. “I think it’s extremely important for forestry professionals to be out talking to people about this noble and renewable profession.”
Westergreen said his motivation for volunteering as an inspector is because of the many social and environmental benefits provided by small forest landowners. “If I can volunteer as an inspector to help them accomplish their goals, my work helps the whole landscape.” And just like the landowners he assists, Westergreen also manages his family’s tree farm, whose history dates back to 1888.
Since 2002, the ATFS has awarded a Regional Outstanding Inspector of the year for its four regions (North East, North Central, Southern, and Western), and from among these finalists, a National Tree Farm Inspector of the Year is awarded.
The Washington Tree Farm Program administers the certification of over 400,000 acres of forestland under The American Tree Farm System®, a program of the American Forest Foundation . ATFS is the largest and oldest sustainable woodland system in the United States, internationally recognized, meeting strict third-party certification standards.
For more information, contact Tammie Perreault, Chair, Washington Tree Farm Program at email@example.com or 360-515-1340.