Pictured (l to r) are DEP Commissioner Bob Martin; consulting forester Robert R. Williams, CF; Professor of Environmental Studies George Zimmermann, Ph.D; Dr. Peter Straub, Dean of the School of Natural Science and Mathematics, Stockton University, and David Zimmer, Executive Director of the NJ Environmental Infrastructure Trust.
article and photo courtesy NJ Dept. of Environmental Protection
The award in Healthy Ecosystems is presented to a nominee that demonstrates experience in programs or techniques that have resulted in the restoration, protection and enhancement of the State’s ecological resources. These resources include wetlands, estuaries and coastal areas, as well as non-game and/or threatened and endangered species.
Dr. George Zimmermann, a professor of Environmental Studies at Stockton University in Galloway Township, Atlantic County, was the lead campus proponent for the school’s Forest Management Plan, which the Pinelands Commission approved in 2013 – making it the first comprehensive forest management plan for public land within the ecologically sensitive Pinelands region. That plan stands as a state model for management of forestland. It uses the latest forest management techniques and best management practices centered on large-scale public use of the land, which is tantamount to having a university in a forest. In addition to serving as a blueprint for how best to use the Stockton forests, Dr. Zimmermann’s plan is a working document to transform the forests into a laboratory and demonstration site to develop and implement sound, sustainable forestry practices in the Pinelands region, as well as providing guidance for other public entities to manage their forestry resources responsibly.
Dr. Zimmermann has been a member of the Society of American Foresters since 1981.