Jim Petersen has been a working journalist for 57 years.
In 1986, he started the Evergreen Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of science-based forestry and forest policy.
A gifted writer, Petersen is blessed with an encyclopedic knowledge of the history of forestry, forest conservation and wood products manufacturing in America.
Speaking is second nature to him. His thoughtful and entertaining presentations have earned him the respect and admiration of audiences from coast to coast.
In his speeches, he draws on a wealth of anecdotal knowledge gained from his interviews with hundreds of foresters, loggers, scientists, conservationists, lumbermen, and politicians – even Earth First tree sitters.
“They all have their stories,” Petersen says. “My role has been to listen carefully, then place them in the context of society’s evolving perceptions about forestry and the environment. Patience and respect are essential – and you can’t be judgmental – or you won’t learn anything new.”
Asked to explain how he’s managed to survive journalism’s transition from daily newspapers to light-speed social media, Petersen wryly replied, “The principles of honest reporting haven’t changed, but it helps to know where all the bodies are buried. I have a good cemetery map.”