Share ‘A Day In The Life’ To Highlight Your Career In Urban Forestry

The Wisconsin Forestry Center (WFC) is seeking forestry professionals to create 90-second videos showing an authentic representation of a day in your life as you go about your job duties. The videos will be posted on the WFC’s Facebook and Instagram accounts to promote awareness of forestry jobs and foster workforce development. Check with your employer to obtain approval and email to get involved. Continue reading “Share ‘A Day In The Life’ To Highlight Your Career In Urban Forestry”

DNR Welcomes New Urban Forestry Coordinator In Milwaukee

By Jeff Roe, DNR Urban Forestry Team Leader, Madison; or 608-535-7582

Elton RogersI am pleased to announce that Elton Rogers has accepted the Southeast Regional Urban Forestry Coordinator position. Elton is based in Milwaukee and his first day was Jan. 16.

Elton holds a bachelor’s degree in geography from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and has
earned a graduate certificate in urban forestry from Oregon State University. Additionally, he is
in the final stages of completing his graduate research project to obtain a Master of Natural
Resources degree with an emphasis in urban forestry.

For the past five years, Elton has been a lead faculty member and full-time instructor at Milwaukee
Area Technical College, teaching in both the Landscape Horticulture associate degree program
and the Arborist Apprenticeship program. He is also an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist and
has held various roles in municipal urban forestry programs throughout his professional career.
He is eager to continue collaborating with municipalities, nonprofits and other organizations in
southeastern Wisconsin to help establish and maintain a resilient urban forest.

Outside work, he enjoys exploring local nature preserves with his wife and two kids. A couple of
his hobbies include disc golfing and rope splicing.

You can get a hold of Elton at or 414-294-8675.

Jenn Janness Joins DNR Urban Forestry Team

DNR Urban Forestry welcomes Jenn Janness to the team. She will be focusing on urban forestry outreach and supporting the Urban Forestry Council. Jenn shares this introduction of herself:

I have spent most of my career involved in outreach, training and nonprofit management. I worked at UW-Oshkosh as an AmeriCorps program director for many years before becoming a job skills instructor and then a program coordinator for a transitional housing program. Since 2021, I have been employed with the DNR at the Kettle Moraine Northern Unit and at Brule River State Forest as a Natural Resources Educator and Park and Rec Specialist. I look forward to learning more about urban forestry and combining my communications skills with my passion for conservation. Luckily, the Brule DNR had space so I can continue to enjoy beautiful views out of the windows of their historic building while I work! In my free time, I enjoy exploring the outdoors, crocheting and reading in my hammock. I love to travel so am looking forward to visiting different areas of the state as part of my new position!

Career Opportunity: Seeking Applicants For Southeast WI Urban Forestry Coordinator

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Division of Forestry is seeking applicants for an Urban Forestry Coordinator (Forestry Specialist classification). This position will be headquartered in either Milwaukee, Racine, Kenosha, Walworth or Waukesha counties, depending on workspace availability. Remote work is also available for a portion of the workweek after initial onboarding period.

Position Summary

The Urban Forestry Coordinator develops, administers and implements the urban forestry assistance program in partnership to maintain or increase public and private urban forest canopy that will supply the full array of benefits. This position is the technical expert and thought leader for the Division in this Urban Forestry service area, setting the pace for the Division through leadership, innovation, adaptation, best practices, and transfer of knowledge.

Continue reading “Career Opportunity: Seeking Applicants For Southeast WI Urban Forestry Coordinator”

DNR Urban Forestry Coordinator Kim Sebastian Retires

Congratulations to Kim G. Sebastian as she begins her retirement this month. Kim has been with the DNR as Urban Forestry Coordinator since 1990. Read on to hear Kim reflect on her experience with the DNR and share some parting words.

After 32 years in the enviable position as a Wisconsin DNR Urban Forestry Coordinator, I will be retiring on Aug. 1, 2023, from a dream job I love, with colleagues I love even more. I’ve been incredibly blessed to learn, smile and serve every day and to call hundreds of strangers now friends. Thank you for accompanying me on this career journey and helping build one of the most incredible forestry programs in the country. Thank you for having faith in me back in 1990.

Continue reading “DNR Urban Forestry Coordinator Kim Sebastian Retires”

DNR Urban Forestry Welcomes New Interns

The DNR Urban Forestry team is excited to welcome two urban forestry interns to the Milwaukee office for eight weeks this summer. This is the second year of a collaborative program between the department, the USDA Forest Service, Southern University and A&M College, a public historically black land-grant university (HBCU) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Get to know our new interns, Deron Isom and Jada Walden, from their bios below.

Deron Isom will be graduating this spring from Southern University and A&M College’s Urban Forestry and Natural Resources Department. He chose urban forestry and natural resources to contribute to the care of the environment. During his time at Southern, he had opportunities to intern with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and partner with the Recreation & Park Commission for East Baton Rouge Parish to produce multiple resource management plans and tree inventory projects. He is currently employed with the USDA at the Honeybee Breeding, Genetics and Physiology Agricultural Research Lab. He is known for his master status as a professional pugilist as well as pursuing a professional boxing career. He is a member of The Society of American Foresters, The Louisiana Forestry Association, Southwest Parks and Recreation Training Institute, and Spartans Boxing Club. He has goals to increase global contributions to sustainable living and spread his knowledge of agriculture.

Continue reading “DNR Urban Forestry Welcomes New Interns”

Madison Welcomes New City Forester

The city of Madison is happy to announce Ian Brown as the new City of Madison Forester.

Brown will lead the Streets Division’s Urban Forestry section. He joins the city after 17 years of public urban forestry experience, most recently as a Forestry District Manager for the city of Milwaukee for the past 7 years.

He holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Minnesota – Morris in biology and a Master of Science in natural resource management with a focus in urban forestry from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point.

Continue reading “Madison Welcomes New City Forester”

A Goodbye… For Now!

UF team photo

Most of the UF Team (missing Jeff Roe). From left to right in the back row: Patricia Lindquist, Kim Sebastian, Brian Wahl, Dan Buckler, Nicolle Spafford, Laura Buntrock. Left to right in the front row: Tracy Salisbury, Kirsten Biefeld, Olivia Witthun, Abby Krause.

Kirsten Biefeld’s last day as an Urban Forestry Outreach Specialist and Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council Liaison was Friday, Feb. 24. You may recognize her through the Urban Forestry newsletter posts and similarly related social media posts and at conferences since June 2022.

Starting Monday, Feb. 27, she will be a Plant Pest Public Information Specialist with the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP). Here, she will help with the Spongy Moth survey and spray program, as well as helping with furthering outreach and education endeavors about Wisconsin’s forest pest populations.

Continue reading “A Goodbye… For Now!”

Reflections On A Summer Internship With The Wisconsin DNR Urban Forestry Program

By: Kolin Bilbew, Odell Kimble, Dan Buckler

(Dan Buckler)

Summer is an exciting time for those of us working and playing in the woods, and this year it was especially true as I spent much of it with two great urban forestry students. Kolin Bilbrew and Odell Kimble, both rising juniors in the Urban Forestry program at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, spent two months in Milwaukee learning about urban trees, forest management, and data collection. A collaboration between the university, the Wisconsin DNR, and the USDA Forest Service created the internship program, which welcomed Kolin and Odell as its first cohort.

Odell Kimble (front) and Kolin Bilbrew (back) assess the condition of a ginkgo tree in Milwaukee.

Continue reading “Reflections On A Summer Internship With The Wisconsin DNR Urban Forestry Program”

Wisconsin DNR Urban Forestry Program Welcomes New Summer Interns

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) welcomes two urban forestry summer interns to the agency’s Milwaukee office. The internship marks the beginning of a new collaborative program between the department, the USDA Forest Service and Southern University and A&M College, a public historically black land-grant university in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. 

The two inaugural interns, Odell Kimble and Kolin Bilbrew, are juniors majoring in forestry at Southern University, the first and only historically black land-grant university that offers a degree in urban forestry.

The Wisconsin DNR welcomes 2022 Urban Forestry summer interns Odell Kimble (left) and Kolin Bilbrew (right) who are working with Dan Buckler (middle) and Kim Sebastian (not pictured) at the Milwaukee office.

Continue reading “Wisconsin DNR Urban Forestry Program Welcomes New Summer Interns”