Forest Commission Chairman to host session this week 

Attorneys in Georgia President of the Georgia Forestry Association, Andres Villegas, and Chuck Williams, director of the Georgia Forestry Commission, are set to host a “Tree Talk” session in Oconee County on Friday. The meeting will be at 11:30 a.m. at Hot Thomas Barbecue in Watkinsville.

Local landowners, industry partners and any interested citizens are encouraged to attend the event that will address concerns about forestry, according to a press release from the Forestry Commission.

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“Every single person in Georgia is impacted by forestry in some way, and the GFC protects and conserves our forest resources through leadership, service and education,” said Williams, the newly appointed director. “There’s no better way to learn people’s thoughts and concerns than to get together face to face.”

“Georgia is the number one forestry state in the nation,” Villegas said. “With 22 million acres of commercially available timberland, we’re the national leader in forest products trade and have a $32 billion economic impact on our state. That means we have an important impact on people’s livelihoods and the environment. And a responsibility to always listen.”

As reported in the Athens Banner-Herald, they will offer information about their organizations’ missions and services, including forest products, wild fires, and communications with legislators.

Those who want to attend and join the discussion must make a reservation to tom@gfagrow.org.

“Your voice can help sustain Georgia’s amazing, renewable forest resource for generations to come,” said Williams, who lives on a certified tree farm in Oconee County.