Deschutes-Ochoco launch 'Discover Your Forest' effort

Non-profit will manage volunteers, offer info, education

By KTVZ.COM news sources
POSTED: 12:22 PM PDT May 7, 2013 
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BEND, Ore. -

The Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests and the Crooked River National Grassland announced Tuesday a newly formed partner organization called "Discover Your Forest," which will focus on stewardship of the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests.  

Discover Your Forest is a non-profit focused on helping the forests by managing volunteers, providing educational and visitor information, marketing, fundraising, and working with the Deschutes Children's Forest to provide conservation education opportunities for Central Oregon youth.

Laura Furguson, a 20-year resident of Central Oregon, is the first executive director of Discover Your Forest.  She brings 30 years of experience in marketing for businesses and marketing and fundraising for non-profits to her position.  

Furguson was the founding Executive Director for  Working Wonders Children's Museum and is passionate about what Discover Your Forest can bring to youth in Central Oregon through education and outdoor experiences.  

Furguson has a teenage son and daughter and spends her time in the outdoors going hiking, rafting, kayaking and camping.   She also volunteers her time to bring educational opportunities to children in developing countries and serves as a board member of the Deschutes Children's Forest.

 "I am very excited and honored to serve as the executive director for Discover Your Forest," Furguson said. "I want to inspire locals and visitors alike to get outside to enjoy, better understand and care for their Central Oregon National Forests.  I want to encourage volunteerism and stewardship in the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests and the Crooked River National Grassland."

Furguson already is actively engaged in Discover Your Forest and can be contacted via e-mail at laura.furgurson@discovernw.org or  lefurgurson@fs.fed.us or called at 541-383-5593 (office) or 541-815-0400 (cell).