Institute launches Professional Forester of the Year award

The Institute of Chartered Foresters is delighted to announce the launch of the Professional Forester of the Year award, a prestigious new award recognising outstanding service to the profession and the sector.

The award will recognise contributions to the betterment of forestry made within the last three years. The Professional Forester of the Year award may be related to a specific project or a range of activities and the scope of the contribution may be at the community, regional, national or international level.

The inaugural winner of the award will be announced at the Confor Dinner & Awards in Edinburgh on 28 February 2023.

Shireen Chambers FICFor, Chief Executive of Future Woodlands Scotland and former Executive Director of the Institute of Chartered Foresters, commented on the launch of the award:

“Professionalism is hard-won and therefore worth celebrating when those go above the call of duty to promote it. Some wear their professional credibility lightly; others strive to maintain it in difficult circumstances. Our sector is becoming increasingly crowded with experts in many disciplines which is why now is an excellent time to acknowledge and celebrate our forestry professionals. I’m delighted to be a judge in this, the Institute’s first Professional Forester of the Year award, and hope that many high calibre candidates come forward to be recognised for their endeavours.”

The Professional Forester of the Year award may be given for any of the following criteria:

  • An outstanding contribution made to the sustainable management of trees, woodlands and forests.
  • An outstanding contribution made to the betterment of forestry and forest practices, including contributions to the application of forestry in any of its branches, policy, education or research.
  • Service to and advancement of the profession.
  • To recognise and honour the achievements of individuals who have attained prominence and distinction in any field of forestry, and to permanently record the achievements of such individuals.

Eligibility criteria

  • Nominees must be current Chartered members of the Institute of Chartered Foresters.
  • Nominees must be of good standing and able to demonstrate adherence to the Institute’s Code of Conduct and continuing professional development.

Nominators need not be a member to submit a nomination. Being nominated or shortlisted in previous years does not prohibit a member from being nominated again.

Nominations

  • The submission deadline for nominations is Monday 9 January 2023. Late nominations will not be considered.
  • Nominations must reflect the high calibre of the award and the person being nominated. Nominators are accountable for the quality and accuracy of information presented in the submission, which may be checked and verified by the Institute.

Selection process

Recipients will be selected by a judging panel made up of four Fellows of the Institute of Chartered Foresters. This year’s judging panel will consist of Steve McCartney FICFor (Chair), John Browne FICFor, Shireen Chambers MBE FICFor and Dr Mike Yerbury FICFor. The panel may only bestow one Professional Forester of the Year award annually.

Judging considerations

We are looking for:

  • A Chartered member of the Institute of Chartered Foresters of good standing.
  • A member able to demonstrate initiative in advancement of the science, management and promotion of UK trees, woodlands and forests.
  • A member who promotes awareness and action towards sustainable forest management practice.
  • A member who is recognised by their peers as a leader in the sector and the embodiment of a professional.
  • A member who deserves recognition for outstanding, recent service to the profession and for furthering the Institute’s values.

Timeline

  • Nomination submissions open on Monday, 28 November 2022.
  • The submission deadline for nominations is 17:00 on Monday, 9 January 2023.
  • Nominees will be contacted by the Institute of Chartered Foresters following the close of the submission period.
  • A shortlist will be published in the February 2023 edition of Confor’s Forestry & Timber News and the Institute’s E-Newsletter.
  • The judging panel will determine the Professional Forester of the Year from a shortlist of three.
  • The winner will be announced at the Confor Dinner & Awards 2023.

Further information can be found on the ICF’s Professional Forester of the Year award webpage.

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