Columbia College Foundation Hosts Lecture on Outlook for Rim Fire Recovery

The public is invited to learn about cooperative restoration efforts underway one year after the devastating Rim Fire on Thursday, October 16, when the Columbia College Foundation      hosts the next installment of its community lecture series.

“Looking Forward: Rim Fire Recovery,” a two-hour evening program at the Sonora High School Auditorium, will be moderated by Columbia College Natural Resources professor Dr. Tom Hofstra, and features leading experts from the timber, ranching, environmental  groups and public agencies for wildlife and land management.

Leading the panel discussion will be Yosemite-Stanislaus Collaborative Co-Chairs, Mike Albrecht of Sierra Resource Management and John Buckley of the Central Sierra                Environmental Resource Center.

The program is free. Doors will open at 6:30pm and the program will run from 7:00pm to 9:00pm.

In addition to Higgins, Albrecht and Buckley, confirmed speakers include:

  • Nathan Graveline,  California Department of Fish and Wildlife
  • Mary Moore , USFS hydrologist and BAER (Burned Area Emergency Response) Team specialist
  • Matt McNicol, USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service, forest specialist
  • Tim Tate, Sierra Pacific Industries

Dr. Tom Hofstra, Columbia College Natural Resources Professor, will moderate the panel and students from the Columbia College Forestry Club will also be assisting at the event and  will have information on their activities and projects.

Speakers will focus on the Rim Fire’s ongoing impacts and the efforts underway to find common ground and compromises, said CCF President Stephanie Suess.

“The Rim Fire was the third largest forest fire in California’s history and our community has so much at stake as we move forward,” Suess said.  “We’ve heard a lot about policy setting and political posturing.  This is an opportunity for the community to hear from folks who are playing an active, on the ground role in the recovery efforts and to learn more                about what they see as being the key issues in the years to come.  The Foundation is pleased to bring these leaders together for an educational evening.”

For more information, visit  or call (209) 588-5065.

The Columbia College Foundation is a community nonprofit established in 1972 to promote quality higher education that enriches the academic, economic, and cultural life of our        community. Our mission is to promote student success by providing community resources that support and expand educational opportunities for Columbia College’s students.             Learn more at or call (209) 588-5055.