Nielson named new Cal Fire unit forester

Len Nielson, a 10-year veteran of Cal Fire, has been named Unit Forester for the Madera-Mariposa-Merced unit.

Nielson, born and raised in Citrus Heights, began working as a forester with W.M. Beaty and Assoc., throughout Northern California in 1994, working as a timber cruiser, timber marker, and timber harvest plan preparation.

He attended American River Junior College, and then Humboldt State University, graduating in 2000 with a Bachelor of Science in Forest Management.

“My love for forestry and working in the woods steered me to attend Humboldt State University,” Nielson said. “I have volunteered at local volunteer fire departments since 1999 and was a volunteer firefighter until 2008.”

In 2005, Nielson became a Registered Professional Forester, and began working for Cal Fire Mendocino Unit as a forester in Forest Practice, inspecting timber harvest plans and responding to emergency incidents.

In 2007, he transferred to the Cal Fire Humboldt-Del Norte Unit as a forest practice officer and last year began working as the State Responsible Area (SRA) vegetation forester, where he was responsible for SRA and Vegetation Management Program (VMP) grant funded projects. While assigned to HUU, he became a qualified fire investigator assisting both resource management and fire prevention.

He currently lives in Oakhurst with his wife and three children, a 5-year-old daughter, who plays tee-ball, a 10-year-old son at Wasuma Elementary School, who plays little league, and a daughter, 16, who is a member of the swim team at Yosemite High School. Nielson enjoys activities withhis family that include hunting, fishing, baseball, and golf.

- Staff Report