Forests and the benefits they offer cross boundaries and political jurisdictions, and cooperation, coordination, and collaboration are important to ensuring sound decision making and well-managed forests.

NMSFA and its members partner with a range of federal and non-federal entities, including the USDA Forest Service, Natural Resource Conservation Service, and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service; a wide range of regional and national private and non-profit organizations; the National Association of State Foresters, Council of Western State Foresters, and Southern Group of State Foresters; and other stakeholders.

In 2020, NMSFA, and the USDA Forest Service signed a joint position paper on Shared Stewardship in which each pledged to collaborate with one another and partners on coordinated regional conservation efforts. This position document was built upon earlier joint commitments to landscape-scale conservation.

Several regional projects are bringing individual strengths and authorities to the forefront. Examples include the Northern Forest Futures Project; project proposals and strategies for the EPA-led Great Lakes Restoration Initiative; the Upper Mississippi River Forestry Partnership; and design and implementation of the Climate Change Response Framework on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and the northern portion of Wisconsin. NMSFA, along with federal and non-federal partners, also worked collectively to develop state Forest Action Plans, in accordance with the 2008 Farm Bill. These Forest Action Plans, most recently updated in 2020, identify dozens of important multi-state projects that could be pursued in the future.