Keynote Address—Forest Management, Climate Change, and Biodiversity: Advancing an Understanding of Caribbean Forest Dynamics and Creating Long-term Regional Networks
*CEO and Conservator of Forests, Forestry Department, 173 Constant Spring Road, Kingston 8, Jamaica.
Caribbean Naturalist, Special Issue No. 1 (2016)
I deem it an honor to have been asked to present the keynote address for this, the 16th Caribbean Foresters Meeting (CFM). I am even more excited about having accepted your invitation to participate in what I consider to be an extremely worthwhile activity within the Caribbean region, especially among individuals who are able to speak “trees”. Jamaica has been participating in the CFMs from the very early days. I recall the wonderful experience I had here in the Dominican Republic in 1998. In June 2006, when Jamaica hosted the 13th CFM, the experience was a most fruitful one as we gained tremendous insight into the challenges and opportunities common to our respective countries. An added feature of the meeting was that we forged friendships and partnerships, several of which are still thriving. I know that this meeting will result in many new friendships and networking opportunities among Caribbean foresters; these connections are very important for us as a group. We must ensure that we keep in touch and not wait until the next CFM to contact our colleagues.