Thom Porter

Director, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection

Thom Porter has brought his unique experience as a Forester in the American Northwest's timber industry to his many roles with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE). On January 8, 2019, Chief Porter was appointed Director of CAL FIRE by Governor Gavin Newsom. Previously, Porter was responsible for pre-fire and resource management programs and led the multi-agency Forest Area Safety Taskforce and Border Area Fire Council.

Porter’s work with CAL FIRE has spanned over two decades and impacted countless Californians, especially in the past couple of years as wildfires have become more frequent and more widespread across the state. In 2018 he witnessed and managed the Camp Fire, which became the deadliest fire in California history. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Forest Management from the University of California, Berkeley and is a Registered Professional Forester.

Podcast Guest Appearances

The Big Climate Stories of 2018

We’re making a list (and checking it twice) of 2018’s biggest climate stories, with the help of Vox reporter David Roberts. Roberts notes that while President Trump’s continued rollbacks of environmental protections made the news, the Green New Deal and ongoing decline in costs of clean energy technologies are the year’s big stories. For other parts of the country, wildfires and other extreme weather events made the biggest headlines. Greg Dalton talks to some of California’s leading wildfire experts about how to adapt to the “new abnormal” of more intense and more frequent wildfires.