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Forestry combines art and science, grapples with the ecological riddles of our time, but itís never clear-cut



About Norm Benson/Timberati

I am a freelance writer with over thirty years of experience in forestry and teaching.


My last gig with CDF was as the Forest Manager for Boggs Mountain Demonstration State Forest. I administered 3,500 acres of ponderosa and mixed conifer forest for the people of California. As the Forest Manager, I was required to be a Peace Officer under section 830.2 of the California Penal Code. In addition to that, there were assignments to emergency incidents such as wildland fires.

Norm Benson


I left the California Dept. of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) in June of 2004 and I haven't looked back. I just wondered "What's next?" Foresters carry  nascent stories. I decided it is time to tell those stories.

While at BMDSF I started the group that became the non-profit Friends of Boggs Mountain. They are a good bunch of folks who could use your support. (You'll find application forms at the bottom of each webpage.)

Before that I was responsible for developing and coordinating resource management training for CDF. And before that, I was the Asst. Forest Manager at Mountain Home Demonstration State Forest in the Sierras, north of Yosemite.

My B.S. degree is in Forestry from Humboldt State University and I'm a Registered Professional Forester with the state of California (RPF #1918).

I'm married with two terrific sons from my first marriage. They are 29 and 28, and live in Sudan and Portland, respectively.

To stay fit, I enjoy hiking, jogging and aerobic exercise. I have finished several half-marathons. I have hiked to the top of Half-Dome and back (17 mile round trip) several times.

In May of 2003, my wife Mary and I attended a fundraiser for the Petaluma High School Library Boosters Club and met a writer sitting quietly signing copies of her books. Sarah Andrews writes the Em Hansen mystery novels. Her protagonist, Em Hansen, is a forensic geologist. I got to chatting about the stuff I did and Sarah said, "Sounds like you've got a book in you--why don't you join my writers' group?" and Timberati was born. I'd been thinking for years that I'd like to write a book someday.


And hey, if a geologist might solve mysteries, then by gum so could a dirt forester.





Norman Benson's Facebook profile © 2009 Norman Benson