Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design


Wood Science and Technology

Committee Chair

David W. McGill.


The majority of West Virginia's forested land is owned by private family forest owners. These individually owned woodlands significantly impact the whole landscape. Connecting with this population and linking them with services and organizations that offer support is essential as these individuals and families establish their ideal woodland. Absentee landowners, land transfers, and increasing industry and development bring to the landscape a high risk for parcelization and fragmentation. With knowledge and forest management information, many woodland owners can improve the overall health, sustainability, and productivity of these lands.;One of the challenges in promoting sustainable forestry is finding ways to connect with these many thousands of landowners. Direct marketing efforts are used to capture the attention of contemporary consumers to advertise diverse products. We used a direct marketing campaign to offer woodland related information to new landowners in three distinct urbanizing zones in West Virginia. We followed the idea of the Ohio Welcome Wagon in this effort.;The West Virginia Woodland Welcome Wagon began reaching out to new woodland owners through a 10 county pilot program. These new landowners were identified through state tax records and contacted via direct mail. An initial mailing, using postcards, was carried out to allow landowners to request a forestry resource information packet as well as be invited to upcoming workshops. This document will address the findings of a follow up survey conducted six months after the initial mailing.