JAMES A. BRUNNER
”IN FOR THE LONG HAUL” AWARD
DR. FRED HALL
Fred Hall has been in for the long haul all his life.
He was a young warrior in World War II. He was a fighter pilot during the Korean War. He was a member of the armed forces equestrian team. And he had a full career as the Regional Ecologist with the US Forest Service in the Pacific Northwest.
Dr. Hall literally “wrote the book” concerning the Blue Mountain Ecosystems and established a number of long-term research projects across the Region. Fred’s pioneering work on forest ecosystems, grazing/browsing monitoring, photography and photo-metrics, and forest health have withstood the test of time and are still being used today.
It is noteworthy that Dr. Hall continued his research long after his retirement from the Forest Service. Unpaid and unassisted, Fred monitored his photo sites in a variety of ecosystems for several decades until his health demanded that he find a younger person to carry that “torch forward”.
For many years, well into his retirement, Dr. Hall also assisted the faculty at Oregon State University on field trips and educational ventures with senior students. He was a colorful and dynamic presence in camp and in the field. An evening around the campfire with Fred Hall was an event to remember….not only for its insights into ecological circumstances….but also for the humor and robust enthusiasm with which he related his stories!
With his shock of flowing white hair and his strong, carry-to-every-corner -of-the-room voice, his colorful shirts, often unbuttoned to mid-chest and his heavy gold chains and medallions, Fred was a memorable and imposing presence. A cherished story relates how a young ecologist was checking into the Forest Service Regional Office in Portland for the first time. He was at the receptionist’s desk when Dr. Hall appeared. Awestruck, our young hero blurted out as he watched Dr. Hall conduct his business and then stride away down the hall, “I have seen God!”.
God-like, maybe. A strong willed proponent of his theories, certainly. Fred Hall made a mark. He made it his lifetime work to foster land management and to develop the monitoring which documented it. The Pacific Northwest Section of the Society for Range Management is indebted to the life-long work of Dr. Fred Hall. It is with pleasure that he be acknowledged with the James A. Brunner, In for the long haul, Award.