Mississippi State alumnus and newly appointed U.S. Forest Service Chief Tony Tooke is the featured guest for the university's 2018 Carlton N. Owen Lecture Series on Friday [Feb. 2].
Tooke's presentation, "The Challenges Facing the Nation's Forests and the USDA Forest Service," begins at 1:15 p.m. in Thompson Hall's Tully Auditorium on the MSU campus. A reception will follow.
A 1983 Mississippi State University forestry alumnus, Tooke was named to lead the U.S. Forest Service in August of 2017 by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. Tooke is responsible for the management and protection of the nation's 154 national forests.
He also is being honored as the MSU College of Forest Resources' 2018 Alumnus of the Year.
A Detroit, Alabama, native, Tooke's career with the U.S. Forest Service began at age 18 and continued through his collegiate days. While at MSU, he worked with the agency through the university's Cooperative Education program, which allows students to gain valuable work experience.
Prior to his appointment as chief, Tooke served as regional forester for the Southern Region, associate deputy chief for the National Forest System, director of ecosystem management coordination, deputy director of economic recovery and assistant director of forest management.
The Owen Lecture Series was established nearly two decades ago in MSU's College of Forest Resources by the Greenville, South Carolina, resident and 1974 MSU graduate for whom it is named. The program focuses on natural resource conservation issues.