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Brenda Wasielewski

As a fire management officer for the Colorado State Forest Service, Wasielewski helps local governments prepare for and respond to wildland fires. Her zone covers approximately one-third of the state. She responds to wildland fires on request if they become too complex for local jurisdictions to handle, but much of her job, she says, is to help those local governments prepare before fire occurs. Her experience at CALS gave her a higher expectation of foresters than some of her colleagues, she notes. “While we commonly joke that ‘We’re just a bunch of foresters, we can’t change government,’ I argue that foresters are on the front line of influencing landowners, implementing government policy, and spending taxpayer dollars effectively.”