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Jay Jensen Wins the Dr. Sharon Haines Memorial Award for Innovation and Leadership in Sustainability

/EIN News/ -- WESTMINSTER, Colo., Oct. 17, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc. (SFI) announced the 2018 SFI Dr. Sharon Haines Memorial Award For Innovation and Leadership in Sustainability at the SFI Annual Conference today. Jay Jensen, Director of the Southern Regional Office at the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) is this year’s winner.

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“This is a true surprise and its extremely gratifying. SFI sets such a strong sustainable forestry example to follow and to be recognized by such a body is truly a humbling experience. My thanks to the people and the teams and the collaborators I’ve worked with over the years who helped make this possible,” Jensen said.

The award, created by SFI and sustainability leader International Paper, celebrates Dr. Sharon Haines, who was International Paper’s Director of the Office of Sustainability before her sudden passing in 2007. The award pays tribute to Sharon’s legacy by recognizing individuals or teams who have demonstrated a forward-thinking approach to sustainability and fostering collaboration.

“Jay Jensen embodies the collaborative and innovative spirit that Sharon brought to her life’s work. Throughout his career, Jay has been known for working in close cooperation with outside stakeholders to foster relationships built to achieve sustainability goals,” said Paul Trianosky, Chief Conservation Officer at SFI. “Jay is also a thought leader when it comes to developing long-term, science-based conservation programs with measurable outcomes that ‘move the needle’ for key species and issues.”

Jensen runs NFWF’s Southern Regional Office, which addresses conservation priorities in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas. NFWF’s work on standardized metrics echoes SFI’s own work to clarify the contribution of working forests to measure landscape-level conservation outcomes. NFWF’s work to restore and conserve southern forests has also been particularly noteworthy and intersects well with the spirit of collaboration represented by the Sharon Haines Award.

“Jay’s leadership and collaborative spirit have been most evident through Forestland Stewards, International Paper’s partnership with NFWF,” said Tom Cleves, International Paper’s Vice President of Global Citizenship. “His expertise has guided our progress toward protecting and enhancing ecologically important forestlands and coastal savannas in eight southern states.”

Another signature effort benefitting from Jensen’s guidance is the Longleaf Stewardship Fund. This longstanding NFWF program expands, enhances and accelerates longleaf pine ecosystem restoration across longleaf pine’s historical range. This precedent setting public-private partnership includes support from the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Forest Service, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and private funding from Southern Company, International Paper’s Forestland Stewards partnership and Altria Group, as well as the American Forest Foundation and the Orton Foundation.

Prior to joining NFWF in 2015, Jensen served as the Associate Director for Land and Water for the White House Council on Environmental Quality and also as the Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment in the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

About the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® Inc. (SFI)
SFI® Inc. is a sustainability leader that stands for future forests. We are an independent, non-profit organization that provides supply chain assurances, delivers conservation leadership, and supports environmental education and community engagement. SFI works with the forest sector, brand owners, conservation groups, resource professionals, landowners, educators, local communities, Indigenous peoples, governments, and universities. SFI standards and on-product labels help consumers make responsible purchasing decisions. Additionally, we oversee the SFI Forest Partners® Program, which aims to increase supply of certified forest products, the SFI Conservation and Community Partnerships Grant Program, which funds research and community building, and Project Learning Tree®, which educates teachers and youth about forests and the environment. SFI Inc. is governed by an independent three chamber board of directors representing environmental, social, and economic sectors equally. SFI believes caring for forests improves everyone’s quality of life. Learn more:

About International Paper
International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global producer of renewable fiber-based packaging, pulp and paper products with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, Europe, North Africa, Russia and India. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods, and enable worldwide commerce; pulp for diapers, tissue and other personal hygiene products that promote health and wellness and papers that facilitate education and communication. We are headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., and employ approximately 52,000 colleagues located in more than 24 countries. Net sales for 2017 were $22 billion. For more information about International Paper, our products and global citizenship efforts, please visit

About Dr. Sharon G. Haines
Dr. Sharon G. Haines, who died on Aug. 10, 2007, was the first director of International Paper’s Office of Sustainability. Her successes included developing many of the company’s innovative partnerships with conservation groups, leading the development of its sustainable forestry programs, championing projects to protect endangered species across company land, helping to establish sustainable forestry policy issues at the national and international levels, and mentoring colleagues to help them excel professionally. Haines was selected as a Fellow of the Society of American Foresters and received an American Forest & Paper Association 2005 Conservation Award. She was a member of the National Commission on the Science of Sustainable Forestry and worked with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

SFI Media Contact
Media Contact Daniel Pellegrom, VP, Communications

International Paper Media Contact
Adam Ghassemi, Staff Communications Manager, Corporate Communications


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