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.