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Four New Faces Join Forest Society Board of Trustees

Organization elects first female chair

The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests recently announced the election of four new members to its Board of Trustees at the organization’s annual meeting:

Philip A. Bryce has been with Fountains America since 2008, serving as the company’s president. Prior to joining Fountains, Bryce was the director of Forests and Lands for the State of New Hampshire for 11 years. Before that, he was chief forester for Crown Vantage/James River pulp and paper companies, and personnel manager for an oriented strandboard plant. He holds forestry licenses in New Hampshire and Maine and currently lives in Deering.

Malin Ely Clyde coordinates the Coverts Project run through UNH Cooperative Extension. The Coverts Project trains wildlife volunteers to educate others about wildlife, habitats, and sound forest stewardship. Prior to that, she was director of the Audubon Society’s Prescott Farm Center. She has served on the Forest Society’s Outreach Committee for the past year and on the New Hampshire Wildlife Action Plan Outreach Committee since 2008. She currently serves on the Durham Conservation Commission and is a founding member of the community’s Land Protection Working Group, in which she remains active.

A resident of Etna, Deanna Howard is the vice president of regional development for Dartmouth-Hitchcock. Prior to joining Dartmouth-Hitchcock, she was the Chief Executive Officer at Upper Connecticut Valley Hospital in Colebrook for 13 years. She has served on numerous boards throughout the state, including those of the Northern Forest Center and New Hampshire Public Radio. She is an avid fly-fisher.

Jack Middleton is the senior member of McLane, Graf, Raulerson & Middleton’s litigation department.  A resident of Freedom, he serves on the boards of The Nature Conservancy, the Mount Washington Observatory, and the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, among others. He has received numerous recognitions for both his professional and personal contributions, including Boston University Law’s Silver Shingle Award for notable contributions to the legal profession, leadership within the community, unfailing service to the School of Law, and superlative contributions to society.

The new trustees join current board members Carolyn Benthien of Goffstown, John Dawson of Deering, Hunt Dowse of Hancock, Midge Eliassen of Sunapee, Katharine Eneguess of Jaffrey, Stephens Fowler of Hanover, Pam Hall of Portsmouth, Amy Meyers of Jaffrey, Howard Moffett of Canterbury, Hank Swan of Lyme, Stephen Taylor of Plainfield, Bill Tucker of Goffstown, Patricia Vasbinder of Concord, William Webb of Holderness, and past chair Donald Wharton of Landaff.

New officers were also elected at the annual meeting. Carolyn Benthien will serve as chair; Stephens Fowler as vice chair; Hunt Dowse as treasurer; and Midge Eliassen as secretary.

For the first time in the Forest Society’s history, the organization’s Board of Trustees will have a female chair.

“Women have played an active role in Forest Society initiatives throughout the organization’s history,” said Forest Society President/Forester Jane Difley. “For example, the New Hampshire Federation of Women’s Clubs worked closely with the Forest Society to conserve Franconia Notch and the Old Man of the Mountain early last century. But Carolyn Benthien is the first female chair of the Board of Trustees in more than 100 years.”

A resident of Goffstown, Benthien has served on the Forest Society’s Board of Trustees since 2004. She also serves on the boards of Global Citizens Circle, the Manchester Area Regional Community Foundation, and the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund. She previously chaired the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund, Manchester Rotary Club, and Goffstown Public Library and served on the boards of New Hampshire Public Radio, and Leadership New Hampshire, among other commitments. She is a partner at Benthien Associates, a consulting firm that focuses on leadership development, strategic planning, and organizational assessment and transformation for corporations, businesses and non-profit organizations.

Founded in 1901, the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests is the state’s oldest and largest non-profit land conservation organization. Supported by 10,000 families and businesses, the Forest Society’s mission is to perpetuate the state’s forests by promoting land conservation and sustainable forestry. For more information, visit


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