Forestry Careers

DNR forester and landowner walking in landowner's woodlands

Do you want to work outdoors and help manage Minnesota's trees, woodlands, and forests for the benefit of all Minnesotans? If you do, DNR Forestry wants you to join our team to help manage over 4.2 million acres of forest land across the state to provide jobs, forest products, clean air and water, wildlife habitat, and recreational opportunities. We offer variety, challenge, and opportunity to grow and develop as a forestry professional.

Variety + Challenge = Opportunity

Through a wide variety of year-round work, you will protect and preserve Minnesota's forests and natural resources. In the spring you'll plant trees, conduct prescribed burns, and fight wildfires. In the summer you'll monitor seedling growth, survey plant communities, identify tree insects and diseases, and work with wildlife managers. In the winter you'll monitor logging projects, plan spring planting projects, and snowmobile across frozen ground to remote forested areas.

Forestry careers with DNR

Click on a video to learn more about the different positions within forestry at the DNR.

Program Forester

Regional Forestry Specialist

Forest Health Specialist

Natural Resource Forestry Specialist

The tasks of a forester depends on where they work in the state and the season.

Forester working with logger at the harvest site

Northern Minnesota

Foresters concentrate primarily on forest land management since one-third of forest land is located in northern Minnesota. Tasks include: setting up timber sales, supervising timber harvests, developing timber stand improvement plans, and overseeing seedling planting crews. Fighting wildfires is a priority during the spring and fall.

two wildland firefighters looking at map

Central Minnesota

Foresters split their time between preparing for and fighting wildfires and assisting private woodland owners. Fire suppression is a challenge in central Minnesota because more homes are being built on small woodlots. State forest management is less common because more woods are privately owned.

DNR forester working with landowner

Southern Minnesota

Foresters spend most of their time working with private woodland owners to manage deciduous forests. Forest land management occurs because a 1 million acre state forest is located in southeastern Minnesota. Wildfire fighting is not a major program in this part of the state.

Forest view at overlook in the fall showing decidous and conferious trees

Statewide tasks:

  • Forest road management
  • Wildlife habitat management
  • Nursery management
  • Law enforcement
  • Forest inventory

Listing of field offices and their locations.