“Kyle’s decades of experience in the forestry industry make him the ideal steward of our state’s forest health and conservation. I know he’s the right candidate to take over this position and shepherd the Forestry Division’s important role in Arkansas’ economy and natural heritage,” Sanders said.
“Kyle’s experience and leadership in working with a wide range of industry partners and stakeholders will serve the Forestry Division and our state well. We look forward to working with him at the Arkansas Department of Agriculture,” Arkansas Secretary of Agriculture Wes Ward said.
Cunningham has worked in several capacities at the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture (UADA) over the last 19 years and most recently served as an associate professor of forestry at the UADA. His work at UADA consisted of conducting research on all facets of the forestry industry, providing outreach to the public, developing successful grant programs, and developing a hardwood management education program in Arkansas.
Cunningham holds a bachelor’s degree in forestry from Mississippi State University (MSU), a master’s degree in forest management from MSU, and a doctorate degree in applied science from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
“I am honored to be appointed to serve as the State Forester and have the opportunity to lead the Forestry Division within the Arkansas Department of Agriculture,” Cunningham said. “I have always appreciated and respected the role and services that the department provides to the public. I look forward to working alongside Forestry Division staff, commissioners, and partners to protect the health and safety of Arkansas’s forests and promote Arkansas’s forestry industry.