Ben Smith and Erin Mester have joined the Alliance for Saving Threatened Forests as new staff members.Ben Smith received a Ph.D. in Forestry from North Carolina State University in 2010. As a post-doc working with the Alliance for Saving Threatened Forests, Ben is based at the Mountain Research Station in Waynesville, NC. He will be working to establish common garden plantings at both the Mountain Research Station in Waynesville and the Upper Mountain Research Station in Laurel Springs, NC, of hemlocks and firs that are potentially resistant to the adelgids. Ben will also be identifying and collecting potentially resistant material throughout the range of hemlocks and firs that have been affected by HWA and BWA, respectively. Erin Mester is the Development Officer with the Alliance For Saving Threatened Forests where she works to increase the contributions to the Alliance by building relationships and exploring new fundraising opportunities. She earned her B.S. in Zoology/Chemistry from Northern Arizona University and is currently working toward her masters at NCSU.