Alan E. Kocher, Managing director
Alan Kocher was born in Baden in 1958 and educated in Switzerland and Germany. He spent a year as an AFS exchange student with a family in Salisbury, Maryland.
Alan served in the Alpine Corps of the Swiss Army and has experience as a construction and factory worker and in agriculture. He studied forestry at the Albert-Ludwig-University in Freiburg. In 1985 he got a Master of Science degree in forestry. He also holds degrees in public relations and school management.
Alan obtained the Federal Certificate of Eligibility for the higher forest service and worked as forestry engineer and newspaper journalist. From 1990 to 1998 he was head of communications for the Swiss Forestry Association in Solothurn and from 1998 to 2002 he was head of communications of the newly created Federal State Secretariat for Economic Affairs in Berne.
In 2002 he was appointed managing director and principal of the German and French speaking Lyss Forestry Training Center. In his time as CEO major reforms have taken place in forestry education and new courses have been created, such as the training course for rangers and a variety of courses in further education and training.
Alan Kocher encourages his students and other Swiss foresters to gain a broader view of their work and to interact also with other countries, for instance through study tours or trainee programs. For 13 years Alan was the Swiss representative for the UNECE-FAO Forest Communicators Network, a team of specialists trying to improve communication on forests and in the forestry sector.