Canadian Forest Owners (CFO) is pleased to announce the appointment of Andrew de Vries as Chief Executive Officer of the national organization of private forest owners, effective February 1, 2024. CFO represents 450,000 forest landowners, large and small, who are committed to long-term sustainable forest management for a healthy climate and thriving communities.

As leader of CFO, de Vries brings with him over 30 years experience in natural resource management across Canada, the United States and internationally where he has developed expertise in sustainability and conservation biology, as well as community, Indigenous and government relations.

“Everyday CFO members are managing their forests to enhance biodiversity, help mitigate climate change, and maintain fresh water supplies and habitats while also providing important economic and social benefits to rural communities across Canada. Andrew’s extensive experience in natural resource management and strong policy background will help CFO continue its advocacy work with governments to create good policy that benefit communities from coast to coast,” said CFO Chair Susannah Banks.

De Vries’s appointment marks the retirement of CFO Executive Director Jean-Pierre Martel, who helped raise awareness about the importance of private forest land in Canada. Martel worked tirelessly with CFO’s Executive to successfully position Canadian Forest Owners as a key part of the solution to the challenges facing Canada’s forest sector. Together, de Vries and Martel are working to ensure a smooth transition for CFO members, partners, and government colleagues.

“We are pleased to have someone of Andrew’s calibre leading Canadian Forest Owners. He is well known in the Canadian forest sector and abroad through his professional roles, as well as in Ottawa. Andrew has demonstrated his ability to balance a variety of perspectives and interests while having intimate knowledge of private land forest management,” added CFO Vice-Chair Domenico Iannidinardo.

De Vries said, “Canadians are proud of their forests, and I am pleased to follow the trail that Jean-Pierre has blazed and represent CFO’s membership across Canada. They manage 25 million hectares of land and can provide tremendous benefits in the face of climate change and other challenges that come our way.”

CFO is grateful to Jean-Pierre for his efforts, working for over two years to demonstrate the commitment of private forest owners to long-term, resilient forests and a healthy climate. “I am very proud of what we have accomplished,” said Martel, “and I truly believe that the role of private forest owners is key to the future of the Canadian forest sector.”

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Media Contact:
Sandra Bishop 778.269.3050

Canadian Forest Owners (CFO), based in Ottawa, Ontario, represents the unified voice of private forest owners nationwide who are committed to long-term sustainable forest management for a healthy climate and thriving communities. CFO members are responsible for 10% of managed forest land in Canada and nearly 20% of Canada’s timber supply for forests products.
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