masthead sustainability sac


Responsible forestry is key to our operations

About SAC

Members of the Stakeholder Advisory Committee include:

Joseph C. Lawson

Joseph C. Lawson, Chair of SAC

Jeffrey Arthur Sayer
SAC Member

Jeffrey Arthur Sayer, Member of SAC

Al Azhar
SAC Member

Al Azhar, Member of SAC
Board of Directors of Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) International

Joseph C. Lawson holds a degree in Landscape Architecture/ Regional Land Planning and Forest Resource Management from Ohio State University.

He was with Mead Westvaco Corporation for 30 years before his retirement in 2013. During this time, he developed and directed the Community Advisory Committee for Mead Corporation’s Chillicothe Mill and Mead Corporation/US Environmental Protection Agency Sustainable Compliance Initiative. Joseph also co – authors “Guide to Sustainable Procurement of Forest Fiber and Forest Products”, a partnership between World Resources Institute (WRI) and WBCSD.

From 2004-2010, he served in roles as Chairman of Standard Interpretations Committee and Standard Revision Committee at the Sustainable Forestry Initiative Program.

Other forestry management functions Joseph is involved in are Corporate Operations Committee in US Tree Farm System, Co-Chairman and Steering Committee in The Forests Dialogue, Yale University, Chairman of Forest Resources and Fiber Procurement Committee in the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) as well as Board of Directors in Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) International.

Professor of Development Practice at James Cook University, Cairns, Australia

Jeffrey Arthur Sayer is an expert in ecology and has worked throughout his career either as a researcher or program manager, mostly at the inter-face between research and practical natural resource management.

At present, he is Professor of Development Practice at James Cook University in Cairns.

He has worked for FAO and IUCN and was a Senior Environmental Adviser at the World Bank. He was the CEO of Center for International Forestry Research from 1993 to 2001 and has also worked as Senior Associate and Science Advisor for WWF International from 2001 until present. He held the chair of International Nature Conservation at the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands.

He was founding Director General of the Center for International Forestry Research in Indonesia and is now Senior Fellow of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.

Jeffrey is a member of the Science and Partnership Council of the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research and has authored papers in peer reviewed journals and a number of books on natural resources topics. He has taught a Master’s program at the University of Utrecht and has been a frequent guest lecturer at universities in Holland, United Kingdom, United States of America and several other countries. Jeffrey has been an invited speaker at numerous scientific and conservation meetings in many countries and have given keynote addresses at a many international conferences and for the past few years he has given a major public addresses on forest or environment topics.

Chief Executive of Lembaga Adat Melayu Riau (Malay Custom Institution of Riau), Pekanbaru, Indonesia

Al Azhar holds a degree in Teacher’s Training and Education from Riau University, Masters of Arts in Languages and Cultures of Southeast Asia and Oceania Program from the State University of Leiden, Netherlands and PhD candidate in Languages and Cultures of Southeast Asia and Oceania Program from the State University of Leiden, Netherlands. He was a lecturer and researcher in Languages and Cultures of Southeast Asia and Oceania Program in State University of Leiden Netherlands (1989 – 1992) and a lecturer in Literatures and Arts at the Islamic University of Riau, Pekanbaru (1985 – present).

Since 2012, he is the Chief Executive of Lembaga Adat Melayu Riau (Malay Custom Institution of Riau) and is actively involved in various local organizations such as the Asosiasi Tradisi Lisan (Oral Tradition Association) in Riau province and Masyarakat Pernaskahan Nusantara (Archipelago Manuscripts Society). Al Azhar was Senior Researcher in P2KK – UNRI (Center for Society and Culture Studies University of Riau) where he initiated a multiyear research project: The Expedition of Four Rivers Culture: Rokan, Kampar, Siak and Inderagiri (2005 – 2013).

He also co-authored the publication: Everlasting Friendship: Letters from Raja Ali Haji to Von de Wall (Leiden) in 1995 with Jan van der Putten.

Erna Witoelar
SAC Member

Erna Witoelar, Member of SAC

Dr Neil Byron
SAC Member

Dr Neil Byron, Member of SAC

Erna Witoelar is a former Member of the General Assembly (MPR, 1997-1999) and Minister of Human Settlements and Regional Development of Indonesia (1999-2001). She also served as the UN Special Ambassador for the Millennium Development Goals in Asia-Pacific (2003-2007) and was a member of the UN Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor (2006-2009).

She has more than thirty years of experience in civil society leadership at local, national, and international levels. She is one of the founders of the Indonesian Forum for the Environment (WALHI, 1980), Friends of the Environment Fund (DML, 1983), Indonesian Biodiversity Foundation (KEHATI, 1994), Clean Ciliwung River Movement (GCB, 1994), Partnership for Governance Reform Indonesia (PGRI, 2000), Foundation for Local Governance Innovation (YIPD, 2002), and others.

She is also the former chair of the Indonesian Consumer Foundation and President of Consumers International (1991-1997).

At present, she sits in the Governing Board of KEHATI and member of the Oversight Committee of its Tropical Forest Conservation Action (TFCA) Sumatra program, chairs the Board of Trustee of YIPD, co-chairs the Filantropi Indonesia, among others.

She is a chemical engineer from the Bandung Institute of Technology since 1974, and has a master degree in Human Ecology from the University of Indonesia since 1993.

Neil joined the Stakeholder Advisory Committee (SAC) in January 2016. He has been active in tropical forestry for most of his career, including project management with FAO and UNDP in Bangladesh (1982-1984), the Nepal Australia Community Forestry Project (1986-1991) and was Assistant Director General of the Centre for International Forestry Research (1993-1998) based in Indonesia.

Since 1980, Neil consulted internationally in the design and evaluation of forestry projects, especially in social and community forestry. He was the Commissioner responsible for environment, agriculture and natural resource management issues in the Australian Productivity Commission from 1998 to 2010.

Neil is Adjunct Professor in Environmental Economics at the Australian National University and the University of Canberra. In 2014 - 2015 he chaired an independent review of Biodiversity Legislation in New South Wales which led to the drafting of a new Biodiversity Conservation Act.

Currently serves as non-executive Director of Alluvium Holdings Ltd, the Institute of Foresters of Australia as well as Earthwatch Institute Australia, he was also a non-executive Director of a FSC-certified plantation forestry company in New Zealand for 4 years.

Neil completed his Bachelor of Science in Forestry at Australian National University, Canberra and received his Masters of Economics and PhD at the University of British Colombia, Vancouver.

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