Chiefs of the U.S. Forest Service

Though the U.S. Forest Service was established in 1905, the federal government had maintained a forestry agency for nearly a quarter-century prior to that. In 1881, Congress created the U.S. Division of Forestry within the Department of Agriculture. In 1901, it became the Bureau of Forestry, and four years later, the U.S. Forest Service. The head administrator was called “chief” until 1898, “forester” until 1935, and “chief” from 1935 to date.

CHIEF FORESTERS YEARS SERVED
1881-1883
1883-1886
1886-1898
1898-1910
1910-1920
1920-1928
1928-1933
1933-1939
1939-1943
1943-1952
1952-1962
1962-1972
1972-1979
1979-1987
1987-1993
1993-1996
1996-2001
2001-2007
2007-2009
2009-Present

Compiled by Gerald Williams, Historian, USDA Forest Service; Carol Severance, Historian, USDA Forest Service; and James G. Lewis, Historian, Forest History Society

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Updated: 6/18/2009