The Redwood Forest Council
- Chris Blencowe
- Wesley Chesbro
- Sharon Edell
- Lillian Frazier
- Art Harwood
- Jeff Hedin
- Bill Heil
- Louis Hoaglin
- Madelin Holtcamp
- Don Kemp
- James Larson
- Darcie Mahoney
- Louisa Morris
- Linda Perkins
- Nonae Sears
- Amy Wynn
- Steve Zuiebeck
- Mark Welther, President & CEO, Mark@RFFI.org, (510) 459-1131
- Linwood Gill, Chief Forester, Linwood@RFFI.org
- Bon Goodell, Forest Technician, Bon@RFFI.org
- Andrea Horvath, Forest Conservation Specialist, Andrea@RFFI.org
- Stephen Smith, Consulting Forester, Forester@mcn.org
- Lin Morgan Barrett, Community Development Director, Morgan@RFFI.org
- Mitzi Rider, Administrative Assistant, Mitzi@RFFI.org
- Elias Henderson, Special Assistant to the President, Elias@RFFI.org
The Usal Redwood Forest Property has a long history as industrially managed timberland. The western portion of the property, located in the lower Usal Creek drainage, was originally developed by industrialist Robert Dollar. In 1889, Dollar built a mill, wharf and town at the mouth of Usal Creek to ship lumber, which continued until the mill was destroyed by fire in 1902. This portion of ownership was later sold to the Malarkey and Malarkey Wood Working Company and later to Simpson Timber, Union Lumber, Boise Cascade, Georgia Pacific and Hawthorne Timber Companies. The eastern portion of the property was primarily owned by Pacific Coast Lumber, a subsidiary of Union Lumber with a mill located in Leggett, and Hollow Tree Lumber Company, with a mill at Hales Grove. Other owners to the north include Sage Land and Timber, Andersonia Lumber Company and Dimmick Lumber, with mills in the Piercy area. In addition, small private in-holdings were also scattered throughout the ownership.
Prior to the Forest Practices Act in 1974, all timberland owners in the area practiced diameter limit harvesting in order to reduce their tax liabilities (AD Valorem Taxes). These diameter limits progressed from 48” to 24” to 18,” and the majority of the stands had multiple entries. Recent harvest activity has consisted of clear-cuts in the advanced second growth along the Western portion of the property associated with the Usal Forest as well as mill and over story removals, many utilizing helicopter yarding, along the eastern portion of the property.
The 2011 Usal Redwood Forest conservation easement establishes the commitment of RFFI to ensure that the Usal Redwood Forest is maintained in a contiguous ownership in perpetuity. We believe that this is beneficial for habitat and timber management purposes.
Mike Balok is a Relationship Manager in American AgCredit’s Capital Markets Group where he focuses on lending to the forest products industry. Prior to joining American AgCredit in 2012, Mike was a Managing Director at Bank of America Merrill Lynch where he managed its forest products group for over 20 years, closing over $100 billion of financial transactions including dozens of timberland financings. He was instrumental in structuring the long-term financing provided by Bank of America for the 2007 acquisition of the USAL Redwood Forest. Mike received a BS-Chemistry from Old Dominion University and an MBA from the University of Virginia. He lives in Marin County and joined the RFFI board in 2012.
His formal education education includes engineering and architecture. In 1993 Richard received, jointly with Leo Cronin, the Nat Bingham Restoration Achievement award from the California Salmonid Restoration Federation (SRF). In 2000 he received a Community Builder Award from the California Assembly, and in 2003 was honored by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Environmental Hero Award for efforts to protect and recover healthy Coho Salmon populations. He continues to serve, representing the Sierra Club, on the California Coho Recovery Team. He has been a RFFI Board member since 2008 [?] and has chaired the Restoration Committee for several years.
She has been a speaker or panelist presenting on rural economic and community development for many groups across the nation including Economic Development Administration, Rural Development Initiatives, Northwest Area Foundation, California Association for MicroEnterprise Opportunity (CAMEO), W.K. Kellogg’s Rural People Rural Policy initiative and the National Rural Funders’ Collaborative.
She began her career with 15 years as a commercial credit officer for Bank of Loleta, a community bank on California’s north coast. She then moved to the Executive Director of Arcata Economic Development Corporation (AEDC) where she built and managed their high risk credit pool and developed a microloan program as well as managed Foodworks, a 20,000 sq. ft. food processing incubator. In 1996, she left AEDC to join Humboldt Area Foundation, the regional community foundation, with the job description ‘do something to fix the economy’. The region has since become known statewide and nationally for its collaborative economic development efforts entitled Prosperity: the North Coast Strategy which has, for the last 10 years, focused on growing rural industry clusters (www.northcoastprosperity.com).
Retired from Bank of America as Senior Vice President Public Policy in 2004 after twenty years with the bank. While at the bank, she had responsibility for the Bank of America Environmental Program and was responsible for strategic planning, initiating, communicating and sustaining environmental initiatives. She reported to senior management but worked closely with bank management, other businesses and non-profit groups and bank associates on various initiatives and collaborations on climate change, recycled paper, forestry issues and urban sprawl. Providing input on other socially responsible issues with the policy team at the bank including sustainability, health insurance and executive pay was another function she preformed.
Prior to taking on the environmental policy role, Candy was a division finance officer in charge of all financial analysis and accounting functions for various division business units. She reported to the division CEO.
Candy came to the bank from Deloitte Haskins and Sells as a CPA .
Bachelor of Science – Accounting
California State University Sacramento
While enjoying retirement, she lives and is involved in the community of Elk, on the Mendocino coast
Kendall Smith is a 39 year resident of the Mendocino coast. She recently served two terms as Mendocino’s 4th District Supervisor. She has been a RFFI Board member since 2008. Kendall has served on a number of regional, state and national committees focusing on environmental policy. As a county supervisor, Kendall served two terms on BLM’s Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) for Northwest California. She also served two terms on the California Coastal Salmonid Restoration Grants Peer Review Committee (PRC), evaluating grant proposals in an advisory capacity to the California Director of Fish and Game. Kendall believes passionately in RFFI’s future success for both the vitality of the county and the Redwood Region as a whole.
Bill retired as Deputy Director of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) in 2013. Prior to his service with Cal Fire, Bill worked as a forester for twenty-five years in the private sector
Bill and his Wife, Wendy, reside in Santa Rosa, CA and had enjoyed the opportunity of the time retirement provides to fish, spend time in the garage woodworking, golf, travel and spend time with family.
Bill has stayed active in the forestry profession and currently serves as Chair of the Northern California Society of American Foresters and Chair of the California Tree Farm Committee.
Greg Giusti (Ex Officio)
Greg Giusti, a founding member of RFFI, he the University of California’s Forest Advisor for Mendocino County. Greg has been with UC for nearly 31 years. During his tenure he has produced over 50 peer-reviewed scientific publications and more than 100 popular articles on forest management, forest ecology, freshwater ecology and community forestry. Greg’s work has evaluated the structure and composition of old growth coastal redwood forests; the relationship between various redwood wildlife species and their habits and habitats; and the management of redwood has a renewable resource. He has been involved with a number of communities during his time with UC attempting to reconcile the inherent tension that persists today addressing the management of coast redwood forests.