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Gifford Pinchot Medal

(presented in odd-numbered years)

The medal recognizes outstanding contributions by a forestry professional in the administration, practice, and professional development of forestry in North America.

The award is presented in odd-numbered years at the SAF national convention and includes an honorarium of $500, a complimentary SAF convention registration, and up to $500 to offset national convention travel expenses.

Nominees must be members of SAF at the time of the close of the nomination period and cannot be current members of the National Committee on Professional Recogntion.

Nominees must demonstrate exemplary actions that further the field of forestry in North America. Evaluation will be based on: 

  • Bringing a professional approach to all endeavors.
  • Making an indelible mark on the profession.
  • Being a person of action in the profession.
  • Making outstanding contributions in administration.

Your nomination packet must include:

  • A letter from the nominator demonstrating that the nominee meets the award criteria, with each criterion addressed separately in a brief paragraph.
  • Letters of endorsement, not to exceed three (in addition to the nomination letter), on the nominee’s achievements with the award criteria.
  • A biographical summary, not to exceed three pages, that includes contributions to North American Forestry. 
  • Recent, digital headshot photograph of a minimum 300 dpi.

About Gifford Pinchot
Gifford Pinchot is widely credited as being America’s first forester and the father of the conservation movement in North America. On the advice of his father, who was concerned about wasteful land use practices, Pinchot studied forestry in Europe in hopes of improving resource management in America. In 1892, Pinchot began the first systematic forest management plan in North America on the Biltmore estate in North Carolina. Seeing a need for a national resource management organization, Pinchot brought about the establishment of the Forest Service in 1898 with the help of President Theodore Roosevelt. The National Forest system and forest policy as we know them today are a result of Pinchot’s efforts.  Pinchot was a man of action. He immersed himself in his work, always finding new and interesting forestry related projects. He inspected the forests of the Philippine Islands to devise a management strategy in 1907. From 1903 to 1936, he was a professor of forestry at Yale. Pinchot wrote tirelessly on the topics of forestry and conservation, including the book Breaking New Ground. In addition to establishing the Forest Service, Pinchot founded the Society of American Foresters in 1900. He served as its president from 1900–1908 and again from 1910–1911. He was elected an SAF Fellow in 1918. Gifford Pinchot brought a professional approach to all his endeavors, the Forest Service, natural resource conservation, and the SAF. His actions have left an indelible mark on the profession of natural resource management.

Click here to view all Gifford Pinchot Medal Recipients