Sarah Crow, American Forest Foundation, scrow@forestfoundation.org (Presenter)
Michael Burns, American Forest Foundation, mburns@forestfoundation.org


The American Tree Farm System® (ATFS) is a network of more than 89,000 woodland owners sustainably managing 27 million acres of forestland. It is the largest and oldest sustainable family woodland system in America, internationally recognized, meeting strict third-party certification standards. Over the past four years, each of the 43 State Tree Farm Programs has undergone assessment as part of a regional independent, third-party audit to assess Certified Tree Famers conformance to the American Forest Foundation 2010-2015 Standards of Sustainability. These comprehensive audit findings offer key insights as to trends across the family forest landscape and forest management on the ground. During this session, we will reflect on these findings and discuss the ways that they and other relevant research, such as the National Woodland Owners Survey, have informed and enhanced ATFS Certification, as an assessable framework for successfully engaging family forest landowners and promoting active, sustainable forest management. Key discussion points will also include effective approaches to landowner and forester communications and outreach and the suite of management planning resources.