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Prescribed Fire: Collaborative Experiences from the Forests of Alpine County

Friday, July 26th, 9:00am – 3:00pm 

This field workshop is an opportunity to learn about prescribed burning throughout Alpine County. Participants will increase their understanding of collaborative prescribed burning programs from experiences shared working in the forests of Alpine County. 

Brian Newman, Assistant Chief of Amador-El Dorado Unit at CAL FIRE, will overview the use and significance of the CAL FIRE Vegetation Management Program (VMP) and the California Vegetation Treatment Program (CalVTP). Clint Celio, Wildfire Project Coordinator for Alpine County, will discuss some of the fire history in eastern Alpine County and the role of prescribed fire in the wildland fire restoration process. David Griffith, Alpine Biomass Collaborative Chair, Alpine County Supervisor, and Great Basin Unified Air Pollution Control District Board Member, will cover the air quality impacts from prescribed fire. Steve Howell, US Forest Service Fire Management Specialist, will examine how forests differ due to factors like management goals and historical contexts, and emphasize the importance of ongoing maintenance. Brian McMillan, Natural Resource Specialist at Bureau of Land Management, will consider the contrasting expectations for forests, particularly pointing out moisture gradients. Brian Peters, Former Community Development Director for Alpine County, will discuss the Markleevillage Fuels Reduction Project, completed in 2019. He will highlight how multiple groups, including Alpine County, Carson Ranger District, Alpine Watershed Group (AWG) and Alpine Fire Safe Council (AFSC), worked together to accomplish this project and how this work has helped to strengthen and expand collaborative efforts going forward.

Workshop Agenda
Time Item
9:00am Field workshop begins 

Site 1: Turtle Rock Park Community Center

Introduction to Forest Health Community Working Group 

Overview of Burning Near Site 1

Prescribed Fire as a Restoration Process  


Site 2: Alpine County Airport

Overview of Burning Near Site 2

Maintaining Forests Through Prescribed Fire

Considering Management Goals and Forest History

Forest Changes Throughout the Range


Site 3: Pleasant Valley

History of Fuels Treatments and Wildfire

Markleevillage Fuels Reduction Project and Collaborations

Smoke Management


Site 4: Grover Meadow



Site 5: Shay Creek

Process of Introducing Prescribed Fire to an Area

Private vs. Forest Service Land


Site 6: Woodford Turnout

Overview of Burning Near Site 6

Ongoing Maintenance

Hand Thinning and Pile Burning

Revisit Forest Changes Throughout the Range


Field workshop ends


Brian Newman, Assistant Chief, Amador-El Dorado Unit, East Division Operations, CAL FIRE

Brian has worked for CAL FIRE for 30 fire seasons in the Amador – El Dorado Unit. He has been assigned to various programs including Schedule A and Schedule B fire suppression, Emergency Command Centers, and the unit Vegetation Management Program / Fuels reduction program. He Graduated from Cogswell Polytechnical College with a B.S. in Fire Management and Technology. Brian’s current position is the Assistant Chief of the East Division of AEU, which includes Lake Tahoe and Alpine County and a Fire Crew fire center. Brian is a member of CAL FIRE Incident Management Team 3 as the Fire Behavior Analyst and instructs on numerous cadres including Prescribed Fire Incident Commander, and the Fire Behavior series.

Steve Howell, Fire Management Specialist, US Forest Service

Steve attended the University of Nevada Reno and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Range Management. After graduating, he was hired full time with the US Forest Service in fire suppression working on fire engines. To date, he has 30 years with the US Forest Service. He has worked his entire career on the Humboldt-Toiyabe NF. Steve started his career in Fire Suppression, moved to Fire Prevention and then finally into Fuels Management, where currently he is the Fire Management Specialist with oversight of the Carson and Bridgeport Ranger Districts Fuels program on approximately 1,400,000 acres.

Clint Celio, Wildfire Project Coordinator, Alpine County, California

Clint Celio is the Alpine county wildfire projects coordinator. Born and raised in Alpine County, Mr. Celio earned a BS and MS from Colorado State University before returning to Alpine County to continue to serve his community. He has written the Alpine County Community Wildfire Protection Plan as well as wildfire mitigation documents for Lake Tahoe and the surrounding communities. He is a member of the local fire department, serving as assistant chief for almost 20 years. Most recently Clint took on the county coordinator position for the California Fire Safe Council program and is the project manager for the Tamarack Fire Emergency Forest Restoration Team. 

David Griffith, Alpine Biomass Collaborative Chair, Alpine County Supervisor, Great Basin Unified Air Pollution Control District Board Member

David Griffith has been an Alpine County Supervisor for over seven years as well as a member of the Board of Directors of the Great Basin Unified Air Pollution Control District. He was a founding member of the Alpine Fire Safe Council and is Chair of the Alpine Biomass Collaborative.

Brian Peters, Former Community Development Director, Alpine County, California

Brian Peters is the former Community Development Director for Alpine County, California. He retired in 2020 after 22 years with the County. Brian has over 35 years of local government experience in California and Colorado. His work focused on land use planning, development review, preparation of community plans, environmental analysis, staff reports, presentations to commissions and boards and communication of information to the public. Brian was part of a multi-agency team that planned and conducted the Markleeville Fuels Reduction Project that treated over 200 acres of National Forest System lands bordering a residential area. Since 2021 Mr. Peters has been part of a consultant team providing wildfire mitigation planning and coordination services to Alpine County under a grant from the State of California. Brian holds a Master’s in Regional Planning from Washington State University and a Bachelor’s in Forest Management from Colorado State University. Brian is a long time Alpine County resident and lives in Woodfords California.

Brian McMillan, Natural Resource Specialist, Bureau of Land Management

Brian graduated from the University of Nevada Reno with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science. He has spent the last ten years working in the natural resource field, an of those, the past 8 with the Bureau of Land Management. Brian’s current position is Natural Resource Specialist where he covers a variety of resources within the Carson City District, which encompasses approximately 5,300,000 acres federal public lands.

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