Weber Recognized As Sustainable Forester

ALBANY, Ga., Sept. 5 — Russell Weber, regional manager of F&W Forestry Service’s Gainesville, Fla., office, has been awarded the 2017 Sustainable Forestry Award by Audubon Florida.

The award is presented annually to a Florida-based forester, forestry family or forest business that demonstrates improvements in bird and wildlife habitats and water resources through forest management practices.

Weber was nominated for the award by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) based on silviculture and wildlife habitat improvement practices he implemented on two of his family’s properties in Columbia County in North Florida.

“Mr. Weber understands the value of private lands to the conservation of our state’s wildlife resources and models a positive relationship with the state’s wildlife agency,” wrote Scott Sanders, director of FWC’s Conservation Planning Services, in his nomination letter.

Some of the wildlife practices implemented by Weber on the properties include tree planting that results in an unplanted mosaic of old-field and oak hammock to benefit wildlife for food, nesting, and cover; mowing and maintenance of forest roads to encourage healthy native ground cover; brush management and prescribed burning; and the placement of bird nesting boxes.

A selection committee comprised of members of Audubon Florida and the Florida Forestry Association review nominations submitted from across the state and select a recipient for the annual award.

Weber, a forestry professional with more than 40 years of experience, has supervised F&W activities in North and Central Florida since 1988. F&W provides forest management, consulting, and rural real estate services to private landowners throughout the Eastern U.S. and internationally.

“Russ has a long history and deep commitment to sustainable forestry and multi-use management that benefits the environment and wildlife,” said Marshall Thomas, president of Albany, Ga.-based F&W. “We are very pleased that he is being recognized for his achievements in sustainable forestry.”

“I am truly honored to be recognized by Audubon Florida and I look forward to continuing to incorporate management practices that protect and conserve wildlife and the environment,” Weber said.

Weber was presented the award by Eric Draper, executive director of Audubon Florida, during the annual meeting of the Florida Forestry Association on Aug. 31 at Sandestin.

Weber holds a Bachelor of Science degree from North Carolina State University. He is a Certified Forester©, a state-certified real estate appraiser, and licensed real estate broker. He is involved in numerous forestry organizations including national and state chapters of the Association of Consulting Foresters, the Society of American Foresters, the Southeastern Society of American Foresters, and the Florida Forestry Association.

About F&W:
Established in 1962, F&W Forestry Services, Inc., of Albany, Ga., is one of the nation’s oldest and largest forest resource consulting and management firms. The company handles timber sales, provides comprehensive forest management and consulting services, and offers real estate services. The company maintains a network of 24 offices in 13 U.S. states comprising the Southern Pine Belt, the Central and Appalachia regions, and the Northeast. F&W also manages private forestland internationally through 11 offices located in Uruguay, Brazil, France, and the United Kingdom.