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Young forestry stars: Meet Jessica Kaknevicius

Dec. 6, 2017 - Canadian Forest Industries Top 10 Under 40 contest is an annual tradition, drawing in nominations from coast-to-coast and recognizing young leaders in forestry. 

December 6, 2017  By Canadian Forest Industries staff

To individually acknowledge each winner and his or her contributions to the forest industry, CFI will feature each of our top 10 winners of 2017 over the next 10 weeks.

This week, we introduce our readers to Jessica Kaknevicius.

Jessica is director of forest education and awareness at Forests Ontario in Toronto.

She is in a unique position to be a leader in the forest industry in Ontario. Not only is she a director with Forests Ontario, she’s the co-creator of Women in Wood, a project that links women in the field across Canada to network, share information and seek mentoring.


“Jessica is extremely passionate about what she does, which no doubt leads to the success of the many forestry outreach programs she has implemented from start to finish,” says Lacey Rose, Jessica’s partner in Women in Wood.

The 34-year-old has a master’s in forest conservation and began working with Forests Ontario in 2009. Some of her projects include a program – Forestry in the Classroom – that allows forestry professionals to talk to youth about their jobs and a Forestry Connects program that gives urban students hands-on forestry experience.

“Jessica has a keen ability to make forestry interesting and applicable to the general public, and is very skilled at explaining what forest workers do in a language that is palatable to those without a forestry background,” Rose says. “This is not only necessary, since forestry workers themselves generally have a hard time speaking in relatable terms, but has proven to be successful in improving public perception of our industry.” 

Stay tuned for next week’s spotlight on Tyler Backer. 

And read last week’s on Daniel Main.

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