Gary Featherston

Gary has 30 years experience with the Forest and Timber Industries from public land and natural resource management perspectives. He is a qualified forester with extensive experience as a senior public sector manager. This time has given him a broad range of experiences. In 2004, he established his own consulting service company, Forest Strategy Pty Ltd. He is a fellow of the Institute of Foresters Australia.

As a field forester, he has extensive experience in the management of forests for multiple objectives including the safe and environmentally responsible harvesting of native forest for timber.

His communications experiences include published research reports, business writing, leading forums and workshops, policy announcements, television presentations, newspaper articles and media training.

His employment opportunities have seen him work extensively across rural Victoria, especially in Gippsland. He was the senior manager at Orbost, coordinating the management of one of the town's largest employers. He has extensive experience of the issues affecting rural communities. He was a board member of the Victorian Eastern Development Association working with local businesses and local government to foster prosperity in an isolated regional community.

Gary has worked with stakeholders that have an extensive breadth of interest and capacity. These stakeholders include individual timber processors who have their personal investment and future livelihoods at stake and forest protestors who have unlimited passion for their cause. He has also worked with indigenous communities wanting to protect their heritage and generate wealth for their families.

He has extensive dealings with all levels of government and government departments. These dealings included policy development and program coordination. Local governments are keenly interested in timber traffic on local roads. The Commonwealth Government used Gary's experience to develop the Regional Forest Agreement for East Gippsland.

As a senior manager, Gary was asked to apply his strategic planning skills to reorganise a business unit within the Department of Natural Resources and Environment. He conducted an organisational restructure to form a commercial unit called Forestry Victoria. The mission was set and cultural change initiatives undertaken.


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