Compass Land Consultants, Inc. was founded by dedicated natural resource professionals who share a common vision of integrity across all company divisions: timberland management, appraisal services, real estate brokerage, and litigation expertise.
With current land management contracts at one-half million acres, we are engineering the advancement of our expertise further into the Lake States in the Timberland Investment Management Organization (TIMO) and Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) sectors. We are also committed to expanding our Non-Industrial Private Forester (NIPF) Land Owner management responsibilities, which is an important complementary enterprise for the company. We challenge ourselves to seek out professional memberships and alliances to further these goals.
In the appraisal services world, we will continue to provide our team of five Certified General Appraisers with valuation assignments brought to Compass by both referrals and inquiries. Appraisers and trainees continue to seek higher education and expanded core competencies. As proud members of professional organizations such as IRWA, AI, ASFMRA, MAT, ARA and more, we are always seeking opportunities to expand our knowledge and expertise.
As we continue to develop and expand our unique collection of talent, as well as our land and water real estate offerings, Compass will continue to extend its marketing radius. We are capturing a wider audience appeal across social media platforms and targeting channels with the goal of expanding the exposure to even more of our services and exceptional properties.
As Compass Land Consultants continues to thrive and grow, we dedicate ourselves to its evolution so it can continue in perpetuity. We will always strive to educate, reward, and foster employee development, as well as create a work environment where employees are a part of our growth and success.
We Value Nature.
A GOOD CUT
THE BIG UP DEAL
GRAND MARIAS MICHIGAN
Todd Bishop is CLC’s resident GIS and technical services expert. Todd learned his trade while working in the pulp and paper industry for Mead and International Paper. He has a depth of experience not frequently seen in the consulting services sector. Todd’s responsibilities are numerous, and he is frequently involved in projects supporting data and technology needs, CLC’s institutional clients, acquisition/disposition services, as well as spearheading inventory projects of varying scope, scale, and purpose.
Chris Fink is CLC’s forestry operations manager. Chris currently oversees all aspects of land management on 208,000 acres of Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) timberland in the Upper Peninsula. His twenty-five years of experience with timber inventory timber sale administration, and general land management make him ideally suited for this position as he has dedicated his career to the sound, responsible management of the timber resource.
Jon Fosgitt has been a private consulting forester in the Upper Peninsula since 2000. During his time with CLC, Jon’s primary focus has been working with CLC’s TIMO clients. Jon also frequently completes assignments for The Nature Conservancy on a wide variety of conservation, management, and policy issues. Most recently, Jon has focused his efforts on understanding the impacts of climate change on northern forests and developing silvicultural techniques focused on forestland restoration and climate change adaptation. Through his work, Jon has demonstrated a commitment to a working land’s approach to conservation, and he sees the forest as a place where commerce, conservation, and recreational values can co-exist. In addition to working with CLC’s forest management clients, Jon is CLC’s Chief Financial Officer and works on project development and client relations.
Ryan “Nate” Nelson is a certified general appraiser licensed in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. Nate leads Compass Land Consultants’ Michigan appraisal team. He holds degrees in Forestry and Environmental Studies, and he brings a unique perspective on forestland, special use property, and easement appraisals. Nate is a registered forester in Michigan, as well as a Michigan real estate broker. His vast experience in all aspects of forest management makes him ideally suited for timberland valuation assignments and brokerage. Some of Nate’s projects and clients include conservation easement appraisals, specialty property valuation, and timberland investment appraisals for the USDA Forest Service, the State of Michigan DNR, the State of Wisconsin DNR, investment companies, conservation organizations, and private landowners.
Jeffrey A. Olson is a certified general appraiser licensed in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, and North Dakota. Jeff has 29 years of experience in the business and brings both national and regional experience to CLC’s real estate and appraisal services. Jeff’s vast resume includes diverse projects in eleven states, as well as Canada. Some of his recent clients include the Department of Natural Resources in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Michigan, the State of Wisconsin DOT and Bureau of Aeronautics. During his decades as an expert appraiser, Jeff has performed a great many high-voltage transmission line easement appraisals, conservation easement appraisals, partial taking appraisals, golf course appraisals, trail corridor appraisals, appraisals for the USDA Forest Service and Fish & Wildlife Service, and large timberland appraisals for various investment companies. Jeff also provides expert litigation support, and he often appears as an expert witness in numerous jury trials in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota.
William M. Steigerwaldt is CLC’s senior appraiser. Bill is a licensed certified general appraiser in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, and South Dakota, as well as a licensed real estate broker in Wisconsin. He has over 30 years of appraisal experience in timberland, lake and river tracts, and all types of recreational property in the United States. Bill brings both national and regional perspectives to CLC’s real estate and appraisal services having worked on projects in 17 states and 2 Canadian provinces. Some of Bill’s clients include federal and state agencies, TIMOs, forest industries, conservation organizations, lending institutions, and private landowners.
We have unprecedented access to undeveloped land and water real estate in the heart of the Upper Midwest.
Our unique website lets you search property listings by destination – such as a whole private lake, shoreline, acreage estate – or by lifestyle preferences such as sailing, fishing, vacation, retirement, and many others.
Our agents combine local Broker expertise with national marketing of your property.
We offer a unique and distinctive network of real estate brokers, foresters, land management specialists and appraisal experts accessing a wide selection of properties.
We are experts in selling vacant land, hunting acreage, wooded lots, recreational land or vacation destination properties in the fabulous upper Midwest.
If you are interested in lake/river frontage, a trout stream or a nicely wooded large multipurpose parcel of land, our in-house agents are here to help you find that perfect match.
A Brief Background of Land Ownership and Forests in the Great Lakes
Logging in the Great Lakes began in the mid-1800s with the focus trained primarily on native white pine trees. Many of these giants were over 200 years old, 200 feet high, and approximately five feet in diameter. Trees were cut by hand, using axes and cross-cut saws. Believing the forest had no end, other tree species were sacrificed to make way for the white pine harvest.
At this time in history, there were no roads, and logs were transported by horse and sled in the winter to various bodies of water where they were stored until Spring. When the ice thawed, logs were floated down rivers to sawmills and made into lumber to export elsewhere. This great white pine harvest marked the era of the first clear-cutting in the Great Lake states.
By 1900, white pine populations were decimated, which led to the logging of hemlock and hardwood. Hardwood trees have higher densities and don’t float as well which required railroads to be built to transport these logs to sawmills and mines.
By the end of the 19th century, billions of board feet had been logged from Michigan’s forests. Some examples of consumption were the thriving mining industry which burned the equivalent of many acres of forest per day to run their operations. Also, the automobile assembly line – where anecdotal reports of the equivalent of one log consumed for every car produced – illustrates the quick rate Great Lakes lumber was used.
After decades of multi-species clear-cut logging, stumps and slash decorated the Lake States landscape and made the region ripe for disaster. Mass fires followed, and millions of acres of land burned. In some cases, the fire burned so hot and deep that the soil was sterilized and has not recovered to this day.
Finally, the beginning of the twentieth century saw the conservation era of forestry begin. Numerous State and Federal agencies were born. As a result of two world wars and the ensuing economic crisis, many landowners were unable to pay their property taxes and saw their private forests revert to the government. These are the land bodies that largely make up the State and Federal Forests we enjoy.
Today, many forests are managed to stimulate regenerative growth and keep them healthy and productive. At a time in history when climate concerns dominate and invasive species threaten native growth, it is of paramount importance to treat the woods with an eye to the future. When managed responsibly, timber is a renewable and reliable resource. It’s important to remember that the air we breathe, our local economy, and our vast assortment of outdoor recreational activities are all supported by this same resource. Valuing nature is an essential component to life in the Lake States’ region.