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Research, Education, Outreach, and Technical Assistance


The Sustainable Development Institute Center for First Americans Forestlands is involved in many diverse partnerships. The following is an example of some of the initiatives which result from CFAF partnerships.


Technical Workshops and Conferences

Our technical workshops have provided participants a non-contentious space for dialogue and learning among tribal officials, students, community members, and tribal, state, and federal natural resource managers.  We have held workshops on the following topics: Forest Management Planning, Invasive Species, Emerald Ash Borer, Green Design and Construction, Collaborated on Sharing Indigenous Wisdom II conference, Sustainable Forestry, Sustainable Forestry and Policy in Latin America, Forest Service Consultation with American Indian Tribes, Ash Tree Conservation on Tribal Lands, and forest products and industry in the Lake States.



Year # workshops # participants
2005-2006 2 90
2007 2 190
2008 2 80
2009 4 104
2010 3 48
2011 6 180
2012 3 225




Liaison Presentations, Seminars, and Guest Lectures

The Forest Service Liaison has given many presentations and lectures to CMN and other undergraduate university students, graduate university students, faculty, community members, and natural resource professionals.  Topics have included: SDI Model of Sustainability, CMN/FS Partnership, Emerald Ash Borer and American Indian Communities, Community Forestry in Bolivia



Year # presenations # participants
2005-2006 9 233
2007 4 140
2008 18 294
2009 11 218
2010 11 342
2011 5 235
2012 8 422





  • Community Forestry, Sustainable Forest Management, and Environmental History in Indigenous communities in Wisconsin and Bolivia
  • Acoustic Testing of Wood Properties for Optimal Biomass Utilization
  • Climate Change and American Indian Communities
  • Social Indicators of Sustainable Forest Management on Tribal Forestlands
  • Traditional Knowledge and Forest Inventory of Birch Bark in the Lake States
  • General reference articles on American Indian Forestlands and Bolivian Forest Management

Menominee Sustainable Forestry and Community Educational Field Tours

Tours discuss history of forest management on the Menominee Reservation, Menominee history, Menominee community and government, Menominee Forest Management, Silviculture, Ecology, Sustainability, and Culture.



Year # field tours # participants
2005-2006 6 116
2007 3 168
2008 4 36
2009 6 117
2010 5 57
2011 2 32
2012 5 133





Projects with College of Menominee Nation Students

Internships – Our internships are one of the most important ways we work with students.  Student interns develop projects, research, and individual study on topics important to American Indian communities.  Topics have included: Emerald Ash Borer, Sustainability Criteria and Indicators, Birch Bark, Sustainable Design and Construction, Micrometerology.


25 College of Menominee Nation Student interns since 2004.

2 Student Leadership Workshops

5 US Forest Service STEP students

1 US Forest Service SCEP student leading to permanent placement


Leveraged Funding

$150,000 Sustainability Indicators Research PSU/CMN

$45,000 Invasive Species and EAB in American Indian Communities

$36,500 for Sharing Indigenous Wisdom (Not including CMN contribution)

$57,000 for CMN student interns (Not including CMN contributions)

$150,000 Acoustic Testing of Wood CMN/FPL/UMN Duluth

$100,000/year North East Climate Science Center (as of 2013 $200,000 total)

$50,000 NRS/USFS R&D Tribes and Climate Change Research with CMN

$25,000 total for NRS Special Project Funds: CMN Intern for NRS and cultural training

$50,000 MTE Mill Works Division Grant from FPL

$200,000 In-Kind Agreement with UW Madison Knowledge Systems for Sustainability


Other Highlights


October 2003, MOU Signed by College of Menominee Nation, Sustainable Development Institute, Forest Products Laboratory, Eastern Region, North East Research Station, North Central Research Station, and Northeastern Area.  The Center for First Americans Forestlands is created.


April 2005, US Forest Service hires a Liaison to be based at the College of Menominee Nation Keshena Campus to facilitate projects and the administrative aspects of the partnership.


October 2009, second MOU is signed by the College of Menominee Nation, Sustainable Development Institute, Forest Products Laboratory, Eastern Region, North East Research Station, North Central Research Station, and Northeastern Area.


The Center for First Americans Forestlands maintains engagement with the US Forest Service national level through the Office of Tribal Relations.


The Center for First Americans Forestlands has worked with several units of the US Forest Service to develop strategies for the recruitment of new employees and student employment.


The Partnership is expanding to facilitate cross-boundary management of cultural and natural resources.  CMN Education and Extension Archeology and Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest cultural resource management project on the National Forest.

Permanent link to this article:

CMN Learning Path

There is a walking path that winds throughout the CMN Keshena campus, including about a half mile section that runs along the East side through a mixed northern hardwood forest, an old field forest succession, and a wetland edge. Dubbed the “Learning Path”, CMN faculty, students, and SDI staff have been working to develop the …

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Forestry Summit 2012

On June 6 and 7, 2012, the Center for First Americans Forestlands held the Shifting Seasons Great Lakes Forest, Industry, Products, and Resources Summit. This June, the Center plans on publishing the summit report. You will be able to download a .pdf version of the report and appendices here. Shifting Seasons: Great Lakes Forest, Industry, …

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Measuring the Pulse of the Forest

Forest ecosystems are experiencing accelerating levels of environmental alteration associated with climate change. These changes could have serious outcomes for forest ecosystem structure and function, as well as the people that live in and/or depend on the forest. These concerns affect all habitats and cultures worldwide, but potentially have a disparate impact on Indigenous communities …

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Sustainable Indigenous Forestry

  The Menominee People are known world-wide for their stewardship of the Menominee forest. “Sustainability” is not just a keyword or business objective, but a way-of-life. Prompted by Menominee’s long tradition of sustainable forestry practices, tribal leaders created the Sustainable Development Institute to encourage, promote, and build upon Menominee approach to sustainable development. Please continue to …

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Wood Utilization and Marketing Technical Assistance

In June 2012 College of Menominee Nation (CMN) entered into a Cooperative Agreement with the US Forest Service, Technological Marketing Unit with the Forest Products Lab (FPL), to help develop marketing tools (brochures, website development, single page photo glossies, etc.) and conduct a market study to identify key target markets for the Menominee Tribal Enterprises …

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