Schwarzenegger becomes honorary Forest Ranger

Posted on Categories Uncategorized
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Arnold Schwarzenegger greets his newest “co-workers” – U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell and Smokey Bear – after a ceremony naming the former California governor as an honorary forest ranger. During his acceptance speech, Schwarzenegger applauded the agency for its work and gave special praise to Forest Service firefighters. (USDA photo/Bob Nichols)

It was just a month ago that Betty White became an honorary Forest Ranger. Now Arnold Schwarzenegger has been added to the ranks which also includes Chuck Leavell, keyboard player for the Rolling Stones. A rather diverse group.

Arnold Schwarzenegger
U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell presents former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger a Forest Service jacket with badge during a ceremony naming him an Honorary Forest Ranger. Schwarzenegger was honored for his work on climate change issues. (USDA photo/Bob Nichols)

Below are excerpts from an announcement by the USFS:


“Former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger received a U.S. Forest Service badge and jacket during a special ceremony in Washington, D.C., naming him an Honorary Forest Ranger for his work on climate change issues.

“I know you understand what we need to do as a nation to reduce the level of carbon in the atmosphere — after all, you have helped lead the way,” U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said to Schwarzenegger during the ceremony at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. “We look forward to having your help in educating communities on the devastating impacts of climate change on our forests and grasslands.”

Schwarzenegger said the honor “truly touches my heart” and expressed high praise for the agency and highlighted his respect for the thousands of Forest Service firefighters, especially as climate change effects have contributed to hotter, longer fire seasons.

“I have always known the kind of great work the U.S. Forest Service is doing. But when I became governor of California, (I saw) firsthand the kind of devastating fires we have in California,” he said. “I also have seen what climate change has done. We used to have a fire season, which was in the summer and the fall. Eventually this creeped up to (include) spring and now there is fire all year long.”

He said that Forest Service firefighters are “without a doubt the best firefighters in the world.”

“And it was like a sport team,” he said. “When a mistake was made there was never any finger pointing. You just got together and figured out how to work even better together. And because of that they were better able to do their jobs. . . and this is why I became such a fan.”

What some people may not realize is that he has an established record of working to ensure the viability of natural resources worldwide.

As governor, he signed into law landmark legislation, the Global Warming Solutions Act, putting California at the forefront in the fight against climate change. He set the state on a course of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2020. California is well on its way to meetings its targets through a ground-breaking mix of measures, including a low carbon fuel standard, a renewable energy portfolio, and a cap-and-trade program. Schwarzenegger as governor also approved tough new vehicle fuel economy standards that have since been adopted at the national level.

Since leaving office in 2011, Schwarzenegger has continued to champion the need to address climate change. He cofounded the R20 — the Regions of Climate Action. The R20 is a global nonprofit dedicated to problem solving by subnational governments, like the states and counties here in the United States. The R20 helps governments develop projects to lower carbon emissions and to make forests and other ecosystems more resilient—more able to recover from the impacts of climate change.

He most recently met with the Prime Minister of Algeria to sign a 3-year agreement to establish an R20 office that will advise Algerian states on solar energy projects, waste reduction and waste energy projects, energy-efficient street lighting, and other sustainable technologies. The office will serve as a regional hub in the Mediterranean, showcasing best practices and hosting conferences to help other countries implement low-carbon projects and create green jobs.

In August 2012, the Schwarzenegger Institute for State and Global Policy was launched by the University of Southern California. The institute is designed to develop leaders who transcend partisanship to find local solutions based on sound science. Earlier this year, the institute brought together some of the nation’s most prominent scientists to discuss the National Climate Assessment, a sobering look at the impacts projected to result from climate change.”

Typos, let us know HERE, and specify which article. Please read the commenting rules before you post a comment.

Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

7 thoughts on “Schwarzenegger becomes honorary Forest Ranger”

  1. When Gov. Schwarznegeer left office in California the State fire service (Cal Fire) lost a great leader and comrade. Although probably not trained as a professional fireman Gov. Schwarznegger listened to what his ‘troops” had to say and never hesitated to move forward on public safety issues. He was always showing up on fires looking, listening and asking questions, sincere, to the maxx. I’m glad Mr. Greybeard mentioned the DC 10 project, Arnold did make that happen! It’s too bad Arnold Schwarznegeer wasn’t born in this country.

  2. While frustrating, promotion is a huge part of public agency management’s job. A public official in Washington state once said(paraphrased) … what we are percieved to do may be more important in our customer’s eyes than our actual accomplishments…

    A horrible truth, but for the great unknowing masses, looking good is more important as taxpayers than actual functionality. And in his position, Tidwell’s job doesn’t really allow him to accomplish much. he’s so many 30%s past really doing work that I doubt his workload suffers from these kinds of things.

  3. The Governator’s Exec Order in 2007 put 10 Tanker’s DC-10 on 3 year contract with CalFire, giving 10 Tanker resources and confidence to convert a second DC-10. The fires in 2013 would surely have been worse without the 4.4 million gallons of retardant Tankers 910 and 911 have delivered so far.

  4. @CookieMonster and also @Gabbert: Have to admit my reaction was the same. Tidwell’s not promoting his publicity through the WO OC with “I’m jammin’ Congress for more budget, better regs, funding for aviation, better hiring, more safety, increased R&D budget ….. nope! no! I’m posing with Betty and Arnold for HONORARY FOREST RANGERS!!!”

    Actually, Tommy Lee Jones can do this far better than I can.

  5. Probably WUI/intermix and climate change are where there’s money and outside resources with which the USFS and other land agencies can partner.

  6. Ready to pump you up

    Errrrrr …… pump each other up

    I suppose there is more than one way to pump up both the leadership and the esteem of a low functioning operation……..

    Pump up the logging industry
    Pump up the haz fuel reduction projects
    Pump up the Airtanker industry
    Pump up temps to full time Agency personnel
    Pump up enough ego and testosterone so the USFS “leadership” so they can get a budget


  7. With some many things in the Forest Service that are broken, really, really broken and the amount of work Forest Service employees are supposed to with less, leadership spends time and attention and resources on this. Crazy by my standards.


Comments are closed.