On 18.09.2017 the world lost Ernst-Heinrich Uber, former Director at the Regional Forest Office of Landesbetrieb Wald und Holz Nordrhein-Westfalen (North Rhine-Westphalia Forest and Timber Enterprise).
Ernst-Heinrich Uber was born on 29.08.1948 in Lemgo (NRW); and from his earliest years he nursed a conviction that his life would be devoted to forestry. On completing his military service, he spent the years 1970–1974 in further pursuit of that life-goal, with forestry studies at the Georg-August University in Göttingen. And once awarded his Forester’s Diploma, he lost no time in starting work at the State Forests’ branch in Paderborn, at which he submitted his State Forestry Exam and worked briefly as an assessor. He then took on various professional duties at the State Forests Board in Bad Driburg, which he went on to head through the whole 1987–1995 period. Further managerial posts were then held with the merged Forests Board of Bad Driburg and Neuenheerse. Then in the 2007-2013 period, Uber headed the Regional Forest Office established by merger of the Bad Driburg and Paderborn Forest Boards existing prior to that.
As a forester, Ernst-Heinrich Uber made his presence felt as a consummate professional who perfectly mastered the art of multi-faceted forestry and forest management in the Hochstift, developing a dense web of contacts with private and municipal forest managers as he did so. His levels of experience and competence were such that he at the same time served many different functions on the Board of the Forest Protection Society (Schutzgemeinschaft Deutscher Wald), and as head of the Höxter District Hunting Association. Furthermore, as a recognised authority for many young trainee-foresters in Höxter, and as a lecturer and expert in forestry policy, Ernst-Heinrich Uber has his fond place in the memories of many classes of students at the Gottingen/Holzminden Forest School. Ernst-Heinrich Uber was also the founder of the Hammerhof Forest Education Centre, whose development remained close to heart until the very moment that heart ceased beating.
It was in 2003 that E.-H. Uber made his first trip to Poland. Three years later that would bear further fruit in the signing of an official Accord in the matter of cooperation with Białowieża National Park. A further agreement was entered into in 2008, this time with Warsaw University of the Life Sciences (SGGW). In each case, the subject matter was joint action to develop a breeding centre for pure-blood European bison, as a further step in the quest to reinstate the species throughout Europe. These efforts continued with the organisation – just a year later at Hardehausen – of the First International European Bison Congress. At that venue it was thanks to the efforts of E.-H. Uber that four Regional Centres in Germany engaged in the breeding of bison agreed to join forces. Furthermore, the Regional Centre with its bison enclosure at Hardehausen took up the task of coordinating the work of this western group of German breeders – an achievement that again represented a personal success for Uber. For without his personal involvement, a second enclosure for breeding bison at Hardehausen would never have come into existence. And it is there that breeding of animals of the Białowieża line takes place (with animals of this origin being far fewer in number in Germany’s case).
Thanks to his unstinting commitment to wisent-breeding at Hardehausen, Ernst-Heinrich Uber made his major contribution to the key work-in-progress that is the maintenance and development of breeding centres for pure-blood European bison around the world.
Honoring his memory!
On behalf of Regionalforstamt Hochstift co-workers