The Forest*A*Syst program was initiated in the late 1990s by Mr. Larry Biles. As the National Program Leader for Forest Management with the USDA Cooperative State Research Education Extension Service (CSREES) in Washington, DC, Larry worked with the developers of the National Farm*A*Syst program to organize and develop the Forest*A*Syst program to focus on natural resources.
With funding from the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Larry employed the services of Mr. Rick Hamilton to write the Forest*A*Syst guide. This 55-page document provides an introduction to the concepts of managing a forest for timber production, wildlife, recreation & aesthetics, and water quality.
Designed for a national audience, the Forest*A*Syst document is a self-assessment guide with the goals of helping new forest landowners articulate their objectives in a written management plan and foster a working relationship with a resource professional who can provide them with technical assistance. The national document was intended to serve as a protocol for state forestry agencies to follow as they developed their own state-specific Forest*A*Syst document and programming. Only a few states adopted the concept and produced their own printed version of Forest*A*Syst.
After the development of the interactive CD, Forest*A*Syst: A Tool for Forest Landowners in the Southeast, Larry secured additional funding from CSREES for the development of the National Forest*A*Syst web-based version. This web version is intended to follow the spirit of the original Forest*A*Syst product created over 10 year ago. However, the affordances of technology have allowed us to make this product more robust and interactive. Expect this website to be populated with additional video clips, printable documents (pdf files), links, and searchable database files. It is our goal to bring the Forest*A*Syst program to landowners and resource professionals who will benefit from the useful tools it provides as they create new management plans and revise existing ones.
To access this valuable tool go to: Forest*A*Syst Website