Forest Service Vision, Mission and Goals

Mission: The Forest Service restores, manages, and protects Maryland’s trees, forests, and forested ecosystems to sustain our natural resources and connect people to the land.

Goals and Objectives:

Goal 1: Restore, manage, and protect Maryland’s trees, forests, and forested ecosystems to sustain our natural resources.

  • Retain Maryland’s existing forest land base and promote establishment of new forests to support healthy populations of native plants and animals across diverse and ecologically functional landscapes
  • Promote sustainable forestry management including compatible economic uses on Maryland’s private and public forest lands.
  • Minimize negative impacts to the State’s forest and tree resources from wildfire, insect and disease, land conversion, and other natural disturbance agents.
  • Support the restoration goals of Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay strategy and promote sustainable forestry to provide clean water, soil and nutrient stabilization, and sequestration of carbon through actively growing forests and tree biomass.

Goal 2: Connect people to the land.

  • Support the maintenance of diverse forest economic activities and the forest products industry to provide for ecological and economic benefits of the state’s forests.
  • Provide comprehensive and balanced conservation education on forest sustainability to landowners, teachers, students, communities, organizations, and government.
  • Utilize working partnerships to increase and protect tree canopy cover in urban areas and improve community fire protection for Maryland’s natural resources.

Goal 3: Maintain efficient and effective operations.

  • Enhance delivery of forestry services to stakeholder groups through innovative technology, proactive policy communication/implementation, efficient use of resources, and professional development of personnel
  • Maintain sound fiscal position of the Unit through managerial responsibility and accountability.

Implementation Strategies:

  • Utilize existing stewardship programs and easement mechanisms to retain Maryland’s forest land base, promote forest stewardship, and enhance connection of contiguous forests.
  • Target ecologically sensitive lands for forest conservation or restoration.
  • Provide integrated technical resource management expertise, financial cost-share assistance, and tree seedlings to achieve sustainable forestry outcomes on private forest lands.
  • Provide forest resource management expertise to achieve sustainable forestry outcomes on public forest lands.
  • Provide programmatic mechanisms that directly support and/or monitor sustainable forestry outcomes.
  • Support healthy forest ecosystems through proper fire management, including suppression, prevention, and prescribed fire.
  • Ensure prompt and decisive response to forest insect and disease threats to trees and forests.
  • Mitigate the loss of trees and forests in urban and urbanizing areas to retain ecological function and contribute to the quality of life.
  • Develop/implement Natural Disaster Response Plan and protocols for responding to natural disasters affecting forest resources.
  • Utilize existing conservation programs and grant partnerships to restore environmentally sensitive lands and improve water quality.
  • Promote the use of sustainable forest management and urban tree planting to achieve carbon sequestration/retention in forest biomass and mitigate ozone pollution.
  • Revitalize Forest Products Utilization and Marketing Program.
  • Provide support for forest recreational opportunities.
  • Utilize a variety of outreach mechanisms and partnerships to communicate forestry information to targeted audiences.
  • Continually develop/up-date forestry educational materials, utilize new outreach mechanisms, and capitalize on special events to communicate forestry information.
  • Work with government agencies, utilities, community groups, and individual citizens to expand/protect urban tree resources.
  • Enhance partnerships within the Fire Service Community to provide for increased wildfire protection.
  • Utilize technological advances and efficient use of resources to improve service delivery.
  • Utilize established internal process to promote potential Departmental legislative/ regulatory proposals to advance sustainable forestry. Provide technical forestry expertise to agencies/partners in implementing current forestry regulations, and technical input and information regarding impacts of new/potential forestry legislation/regulations.
  • Maintain a well-trained, productive, and diverse workforce.
  • Provide necessary financial information and reports to managers on a timely basis to ensure proper budgetary oversight.


  • Our Technical and Administrative Skills (people) lend credibility and accountability.
  • Our Legislative Authorities allow for the application of resources (e.g. technical and financial).
  • Our Partnerships provide a delivery system as well as the capacity to respond quickly to needs and opportunities.

Guiding Principles:

  • We are accountable for our work, which is focused, integrated and innovative.
  • We make decisions collaboratively, both internally and externally.
  • Corporate information is widely available (web-based).
  • We use outcome-based measures to inform choices and evaluate the effectiveness of past choices.

Our Facilities:

  • 1 HQ Office, Tawes SOB, E-1 Annapolis
  • 4 Regional Offices, Cumberland, Leonardtown, Bel Air, Salisbury
  • 2 Regional Fire Centers, Green Ridge and Church Creek
  • 18 County Field Offices, Garrett, Allegany, Washington, Frederick, St. Mary’s, Charles, Anne Arundel/Prince George’s, Calvert, Howard/Montgomery, Carroll, Baltimore, Harford, Cecil, Kent/Queen Anne’s, Caroline/Talbot, Dorchester, Wicomico, Somerset/Worcester.
  • 1 State Forest Tree Nursery, Preston
  • 4 State Forest Offices: Savage River, Green Ridge, Potomac-Garrett and Chesapeake & Pocomoke

Our Legislative Authorities "It is the policy of the state to encourage economic management and scientific development of its forests and woodlands to maintain, conserve, and improve the soil resources of the state so that an adequate source of forest products is preserved for the people." [Section 5-602 of the natural resources article, annotated code of Maryland]