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Trist, Alan Robert (1903–1983)

Alan Trist, n.d.

Alan Trist, n.d.

Alan Robert Trist, former Conservator of Forests, Queensland, passed away on 24 June 1983. Alan was born in Deniliquin in New South Wales in 1903, and came to Queensland in 1919 to join the Department of Forestry as a cadet. In 1924 he began his University studies which led to a Degree of Bachelor of Science from Adelaide University. He subsequently attended Yale University (U.S.A.) where in 1929 he was awarded his degree of Master of Forestry (Magnum Cum Laude). At Yale he specialised in the field of Silviculture, in which he retained a very strong interest during his entire professional career.

On his return to the Queensland Forest Service in 1930 he was appointed Silviculturist. In that capacity he played a leading role in planning and directing development work which established the basis of management of the Crown forest resources of Queensland. He was particularly involved in the formulation of the initial establishment techniques, thinning and pruning schedules for coniferous plantations of native and exotic species, and silvicultural treatment methods for native forests. He also helped lay the foundations on which the tree-breeding work of the Department was built and which he personally directed for some years. Other positions he held in the Service included Senior Forester and Deputy Director (1947), and in 1963 he became Conservator of Forests, a position he held until his retirement in December 1969.

Early in his career Alan served as a member of the Forest Boundaries Committee which reported to the Government on land classification in South East Queensland, particularly regarding areas of forest suitable for reservation for hoop pine plantations. Later, in 1949, he served as a member of the Timber Enquiry Commission established to advise the Government regarding the sawmilling, plywood and joinery industry in Queensland. He represented Queensland at many important conferences in Australia and overseas, including the World Forestry Conference in India (1954) where he served as Chairman of the section dealing with Forest Production. After his retirement he continued to help promote the forest based industries as inaugural chairman of the Timber Research and Development Advisory Councils for South and Central Queensland and North Queensland, positions which he held until 1979.

A long-serving member of the Institute, he was Chairman of the Queensland Division in 1956/58, was awarded the N. W. Jolly Medal in 1969, and became a Fellow of the Institute in 1975.

He was predeceased by his wife, Ivy, who died in 1966, and is survived by his son Alan, a medical practitioner in Sydney, and his daughter Lesley, a physiotherapist in Montreal, Canada.

Alan will be remembered with great affection by his many friends for his unswerving loyalty and dedication to his family and his profession.

Original publication

  • Australian Forestry, vol 46, no 2, 1983, p 140

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Trist, Alan Robert (1903–1983)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/trist-alan-robert-19008/text30611, accessed 25 November 2017.

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