WWOTF: The Series 2020 Speakers

Last year’s virtual Who Will Own the Forest event featured some of the leading voices in Timberland Investment, Forestry, and Technology.

Meet our WWOTF: The Series 2020 speakers below. Check back later for information on our 2021 speakers.

Episode 1: The Reunion: A Talk With Industry Veterans on Timberland Investing

Dr. Court Washburn

Senior Managing Director
Hancock Natural Resource Group

Court began his career at Hancock Natural Resource Group (HNRG) in 1990, and currently chairs the HNRG Natural Resource Investment Committee. His research interests include the application of financial economic models to forest assets and timberland companies. Court holds a M.S. in Forest Policy from the University of California and a Ph.D. in Forest Economics from Yale University.

Dr. Clark Binkley

Managing Director
International Forestry Investment Advisors

Clark is an internationally recognized expert in forestry investment. He served as the Chief Investment Officer both for GreenWood Resources, and for the Hancock Timber Resource Group. Before joining the timberland investment business, he had a distinguished academic career as the Dean of the Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia and at Yale University in the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Binkley holds degrees in Applied Mathematics and in Engineering from Harvard University and in Forestry and Environmental Studies from Yale University.

Timothy Fritzinger

Managing Member
Brooknoll Advisors LLC

Timo manages Brooknoll Advisors LLC, an independent investment advisory firm  that works with institutional investors to source, diligence and manage real asset investments.  Previously, he served as an investment director at Alta Advisers Ltd., a private investment firm in London, where he oversaw real asset investments globally. Prior to that he was a principal at FLAG Capital Management and a senior research consultant at Cambridge Associates. Timo started his career at Hancock Timber Resource Group, where he worked as a research analyst and a transaction manager. He has a BA, MBA and Masters in Forestry, all from Yale University.  Timo is a CFA charterholder.

Episode 2: The US South Timberland Conundrum: Two Takes on the Value Proposition 

Joe Taggart

Senior Managing Director

Now responsible for the overall management and accountability of LandVest, Joe joined the company in August of 2000 as the Managing Director of institutional transactions and consulting.  In 2012, Joe was elevated to LandVest’s senior management team and board of directors, serving as Executive Vice President of Timberlands. Since then, he has led multiple corporate initiatives focusing on the efficient integration of the company’s various business units. Joe graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Forest Management and Economics. He later earned a Master’s of Forest Economics from Yale University.

Douglas Reed

Green Diamond Resource Company

Douglas is President of Green Diamond Resource Company, a 130-year old, family-owned forest products company based in Seattle. Green Diamond operates across nine states in the West and Southeast, both as a full owner of timberland and as an operating partner with other investors. Prior to joining the firm in 2012, he worked for its sister company, Simpson, primarily in commodity lumber production.

Will Sonnenfeld

WillSonn Advisory, LLC

Will provides consulting services  to a wide array of participants in many sectors of the timber and wood products space. Formed  in 2009, WillSonn Advisory has helped its clients in the areas of: Business Assessments and Due Diligence for timberland and mill acquisitions and financing; Contract preparation, review and negotiations; Independent Third-Party Review of appraisals, financial projections and timberland harvest flows; and Strategic Plan Development, including price and volume forecasts. Will holds a BS in Forest Management from Texas A&M University, an MBA in Finance from the University of Oregon, and held a CPA certificate from 1994-2001.

Episode 3: A More Equitable, Inclusive, and Diverse Timberland Investment World: How to Move from Interest to Action

Dr. Thomas Easley

Assistant Dean for Community and Inclusion
Yale School of the Environment

Thomas has spent most of his career as a diversity professional and a forester. As a diversity professional he has focused on the recruitment, retention and diverse talent in natural resource disciplines. As a forester he has worked with landowners and citizens on land management and stewardship. Now at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, he combines his professions along with his passions of art and ministry to lead the diversity efforts in the school.

Craig Blair

President & CEO

Craig became President and CEO of RMS in October 2010, with responsibility for RMS’s investments and operating businesses in the United States, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand. Over a 38-year career, he has held a variety of positions at RMS and in the forest products industry, with experience in acquisitions, resource planning, forest management and wood procurement. Craig holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Forest Management from the University of Arkansas at Monticello and a Master of Forestry degree in Forest Business from Mississippi State University (2018 Alumni Fellow).

Jeff Nuss

President & CEO
GreenWood Resources

Jeff is founder, President & CEO of GreenWood Resources, Inc. (GreenWood) and its subsidiaries and is directly responsible for the leadership and strategic direction of the company and overall management of the business.  He has over 25 years of tree farm development, management and investment experience, and more than 20 years of experience in international business development. Today, GreenWood is an affiliate of Nuveen, a TIAA company, which manages over $1 trillion in assets and operates within the Nuveen’s real assets businesses.

Register for WWOTF: The Series 2020

Intrigued? You can still register. Late registrants will get access to recordings of the previous episodes.

Episode 4: Artificial Intelligence and Forest Management

Zack Parisa

Co-Founder and President

Zack is the co-founder and president of SilviaTerra. A forester and biometrician by training, he developed and patented a process which uses AI, machine learning, and remotely sensed imagery to make forest inventory far more efficient. SilviaTerra focuses on developing tools to extend better data to make better decisions in the context of the practice of forest management. Zack earned a BS in Forestry from Mississippi State University and an MFS degree from Yale University.  

Liz Willmott

Carbon Program Manager

Liz is responsible for Microsoft’s carbon negative commitment — cutting the company’s carbon in half by 2030, removing the rest, and removing its historical emissions. She joined Microsoft in 2016 after a decade of work in the public and non-profit sectors to accelerate climate action and urban sustainability.

Episode 5: Mass Timber and the Future

Karim Khalifa

Director of Buildings Innovation
Sidewalk Labs

Karim has spent his career in the design and construction world, most recently leading the global hotel innovation and design team at Marriott, where he launched the company’s first innovation lab/collaborative design space (The Underground). While at Marriott, he also led the LEED Volume Build program for hotels and launched Marriott’s global modular construction initiative.

Episode 6: The Future for Timberland Investing: A Conversation

Dr. Spencer Meyer

Senior Conservationist
Highstead Foundation

Spencer is a co-founder of the Sebago Clean Waters initiative. He leads Highstead’s conservation science and finance program and works with partners to identify opportunities to finance natural solutions to our environmental and social challenges. Spencer is also an associate at the Harvard Forest, co-leader in the Wildlands and Woodlands movement, and has published academic and popular articles on conservation, forestry, economics, and sustainability.

Bob Saul

Senior Advisor, Agriculture
Fiera Comox

Bob will be a Bullard Fellow at Harvard University for the academic year 20/21. Bob has more than twenty years of direct investment experience in the agriculture and forestry asset class in the United States and Central America where he has been responsible for more than US$3 billion in land based transactions.Prior to Fiera Comox, Bob was a Partner and founder at Grantham , Mayo, and van Otterloo ‘s Renewable Resources from 1997 to 2013. During this period, he built a 2.4 million-acre portfolio that included softwood and hardwood timberland, a wetland mitigation bank, row crop farmland, and processing infrastructure.