State Forester Brad Simpkins moves on to U.S. Forest Service

Forest Society Thanks Simpkins for Leadership & Service

Matt Leahy | April 23, 2020
Logo of the NH Department of Cultural and Natural Resources

New Hampshire State Forester Brad Simpkins recently left that position in order to take a new job with the U.S. Forest Service’s Cooperative Fire Program in Durham. While the U.S. Forest Service will benefit from having Brad on the staff there, this departure is unquestionably a loss for the state. Since becoming the State Forester in 2008, Brad has been an exemplary manager of all the programs which come under the jurisdiction of the N.H. Division of Forests and Lands.

More importantly, he has been a key advocate for strengthening the vital role forests play in the quality of life we enjoy in our state. His advocacy of the forest products sector, for sustainable forestry, and of the need to protect and conserve important landscapes and natural areas highlights his tenure. At a personal level, he was always willing to offer his advice to the public, policy makers, and the staff here at the Forest Society.

The New Hampshire Department of Natural and Cultural Resources is now seeking a replacement for Brad (job description is posted here).  The next State Forester will face many challenges — stewarding the state-owned reservations during a time when the state budget will be under stress in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis, the threat of invasive species and the effect of climate change on New Hampshire’s forests, to name just a few.

Whoever takes over this critically important job will need to have not only Brad’s professional expertise and experience but also his ability to work with all the stakeholder groups who cherish the forests of New Hampshire. We will certainly miss his steady leadership.

Thank you, Brad, for your service to New Hampshire.