Family Forest Blog

Forester Spotlight: Jill Levine

American Forest Foundation

May 14, 2024

Today in our forester series: meet Jill Levine from Vermont! Whether they are experienced stewards of their forest or just trying to figure out where to even begin, landowners go to foresters with their goals for their land and trust their forester to guide them along the process. Jill works with forest stewards across New England to answer questions about managing a healthy ecosystem. He'll walk your forest's trails and works with landowners in Vermont and New Hampshire.

Jill Levine

State: Vermont

Educational Background: BS in Forestry & Biology from the University of Vermont

Jill Levine

Jill Levine on a recent trip to Colorado. Hiking up the Maroon Bells trail to Crater Lake, near Snowmass/Aspen, she sits in front of the Elk Mountain Range.

Meet Jill Levine, one our newest foresters with the Family Forest Carbon Program. Jill lives in Vermont and works as one of the Northeast Outreach Foresters specifically operating in Vermont and New Hampshire. She went to school at the University of Vermont and graduated with bachelor’s degrees in forestry and biology. Jill is also a certified Wilderness EMT. 

Jill grew up right outside of New Haven, Connecticut. With the ongoing influx of ticks, the fear of Lyme disease was overwhelming, and she was deterred from spending much time in the woods other than occasional hikes. Jill went into undergrad with dreams of getting into medical school, but within her first year at UVM, she realized there was so much more to the field of biology. She wanted to make sure she was learning about all the different areas of biology before committing to a specific career path. Forestry became Jill’s second major to learn more about conservation, forestry, and plant biology.  

“I love getting to work every day and knowing that I am participating in something that not only helps families financially, but also improves forests to combat climate change."

During her undergraduate career, Jill got involved in a research project studying how anglers and seafood workers were impacted by the Coronavirus global pandemic. The work involved a lot of statistical analyses, and she loved this experience. She searched for more related work that allowed her to ask the questions she was interested in, like “How were the oceans impacted by COVID-19?” Jill got the amazing opportunity to intern with Dr. Ali Kosiba at the VT Department of Forest, Parks, and Recreation, working with aerial imagery, R and GIS. They studied the reasons for various forest cuttings, and Jill was able to get outside into the field. The combination of her internship and the research project became the steppingstones for Jill’s current career path in forestry. She has worked as a forestry technician in the field for Bird Friendly Maple research, in an office setting performing outreach for Tony D’Amato and Grace Smith’s Northeast Silviculture Library, as an EMT and as GIS technician. 

At this point in her career, Jill feels lucky to be an FFCP forester. “I love getting to work every day and knowing that I am participating in something that not only helps families financially, but also improves forests to combat climate change. I am passionate about helping other people and our ecosystem.” More than 80% of forests in Vermont are privately owned, and Jill is proud to be a part of something that can help these landowners and families learn more about the value of their forests and how their efforts matter. 

Outside of work, Jill loves to hike, ski, travel, and cook!

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