September 2022 Hardwood Matters

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WWW.NHLA.COM SEPTEMBER 2022 HARDWOOD MATTERS | 1 CONTENTS September 2022 • Issue 237 feature 20 Leadership Styles: What Type of Leader are You? by Amanda Boutwell departments 6 Accolades 8 One Common Ground You're Our Number One Priority by Dallin Brooks Executive Director NHLA 12 Allied Angle Ohio Forestry's Greatest Show by Jenna Reese Executive Director of the Ohio Forestry Association 14 Education GraduatesCongratulationsSpotlighttotheofthe199th Class 16 Legislative Log The Hardwood Federation: Working for You by Dana Cole Executive Director Hardwood Federation 18 Member Spotlight Tropical Forest Products 26 Rules DownCornerMarkets Don't Alter the Hardwood Lumber Grading Rules by Dana Spessert Chief Inspector NHLA WHAT'S INSIDE Well, it happened again! Seems that National Hardwood Lumber Association is the place to come if you are a homeless pup. We have encountered so many little pups over the years: shuffled them to the vet, found their owners, etc. But this one might be here to stay. ONLINE Follow us201814 TOP POST OF THE MONTH at reader services 4 Chairman’s Message 28 Educational Calendar 30 NHLA Job Board 32 Market Trends

Bucky Pescaglia Missouri-Pacific Lumber Co., Inc.





Julia Ganey Member Relations Manager John Hester Director of Membership and Business Development

Unique Services Ray White Harold White Lumber Inc. Rules Joe Pryor Oaks IndustryUnlimitedAdvocacy & Promotion Rich Solano Pike Lumber Company, Inc. Structure Stephanie VanDystadt DV Hardwoods, Inc. Membership & Networking

Director of CommunicationsMarketing/ Jens Lodholm Data Administration Specialist Roman Matyushchenko ITS Instructor and Associate Dean of Education Carol McElya Education Services Project Manager

To serve NHLA Members engaged in the commerce of North American hardwood lumber by: maintaining order, structure and ethics in the changing global hardwood marketplace; providing unique member services; promoting North American hardwood lumber and advocating the interest of the hardwood community in public/private policy issues; and providing a platform for networking opportunities. For advertising contact: John Hester, Director of Membership and Business Development at or 901-399-7558 or Vicky Simms, Membership Development Manager at or 901-399-7557



Dallin Brooks Executive Director Amanda Boutwell Marketing Communicationsand Manager

National Hardwood Lumber Association PO Box 34518 • Memphis, TN 38184-0518 901-377-1818 • 901-382-6419 (fax) •


Burt Craig Matson Lumber Company Membership Rob Cabral Upper Canada Forest Products, Ltd. Promotion & Advocacy Dennis Mann Baillie Lumber Co. Convention Scott Cummings Cummings Lumber Company, Inc. Inspection Services Bruce Horner Abenaki Timber ITS/ContinuingCorp.Education George Swaner Swaner CommunicationsHardwood& Marketing


ADVERTISER INDEX 13 A.W. Stiles Contractors, Inc. 9 Ally Global Logistics LLC 17 American Wood Technology 27 Baillie Lumber, Co. 17 BID TechnologiesGroup Ltd. 11 BPM Lumber 11 Cooper Machine Co., Inc. 5 Continental Underwriters, Inc. IFC DMSi 11 Hurst Boiler & Welding Co., Inc. 27 JoeScan 3 King City Forwarding USA 13 Kuehne + Nagel, Inc. 29 MO PAC Lumber Company IBC Pike Lumber Company, Inc. 7 Rossi Group 15 TMX Shipping, Co. BC Tropical Forest Products 5 U-C Coatings, LLC 25 USNR 23 Wood-Mizer

Jeff Wirkkala Hardwood Industries, Inc. Chairman Jon Syre Cascade Hardwood, LLC Vice Chairman Darwin Murray McClain Forest Products Past Chairman 2018-2020

Renee Hornsby

Vicky Quiñones Simms Membership Development Manager Melissa Ellis Smith Graphic Designer Dana Spessert Chief Inspector

Joe Snyder Fitzpatrick & Weller, Inc. Rules

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The first was to support the Real American Hardwood Coalition (RAHC).

It has been an honor and pleasure to serve you. Best wishes for your contin ued health and success. May God continue to bless you, your families, and your business in 2022.

The third directive was to explore the possibility of modifying our dues structure. The system we have been using doubles dues as members’ sales of hardwood products reach certain thresholds. No one likes seeing an expense double. The membership committee was tasked with recommending a system that would result in an improved dues structure. An improvement needed to be made, and the result should be revenue neutral. The commit tee worked on the issue for nearly two years and brought a recommenda tion to the Board of Directors. Their recommendation was to increase the number of sales levels at which a change in dues would occur. They took our current system using the mid-point for each level and added a threshold below and above each mid-point. After a hearty discussion, the board of directors voted unanimously to accept restructuring the membership cat egories beginning January 1, 2023.

I started my two years as your President with COVID still being an issue for everyone. We had our first and, hopefully, only virtual convention. Our Executive Director resigned. We started the search for a new Executive Director, had a Convention in West Palm Beach, Florida, and hired our new Executive Director, Dallin Brooks. We were fortunate that demand for our products was outstanding over the last two years. We enjoyed the best market of the last four decades for our products and services. During the last two years, almost everyone was producing outstanding financial results.

At the first board meeting after I took office, we chose three areas of focus.


A lot of progress on promotion has been made in the last two years. We have raised over $1 million and are on a path to increasing our promotion funds over the next few years. We currently have a consumer website created by the agency that created the “Got Milk” promotion campaign. If you haven’t seen the website, please go to When I scroll through the website, it causes good feelings. It makes me want to use hardwood products. We hope others will have the same reaction when visiting the website and drive more people to use American Hardwoods.

Secondly, we spent some time addressing the optics problem the NHLA has with the 4% value variation that is commonly derived from our Sales Code. The de sire was to eliminate using tally shortage or grade variation to build competitive advantages and still operate within the Sales Code. The intent of the Sales Code should be to ship all the lumber and for all the lumber to be on grade. The Board of Directors passed a motion for the executive committee to form a task force to update the Sales Code, so the “intent” of the NHLA is to ship all the lumber ordered and for it all to be on grade. The 2023 edition of the NHLA Sales Code, Article V Section 2, has been updated to reflect this directive. We also spent some time determining if NHLA needed to define Rules for rustic grade lumber. Currently, there are many different grades of “rustic” lumber being shipped in the industry. No two mills are shipping the same product. The NHLA was formed, in part, to define Hardwood Lumber Grades. It seemed logical that this should be done. I was surprised that the Board of Directors was passionate on both sides of this discussion. We couldn’t come to an agreement, so a future board will deal with the issue.

It’s been a rewarding time serving as your NHLA President. We have made some accomplishments and improvements. I encourage each of you to com mit to serving on the NHLA Board if you get a chance. I guarantee it will be a rewarding experience for your time. You will receive more than you give, and you will be an important link to the future of the Hardwood Industry.

In our member polls, promotion continues to be our #1 issue and directive.

Jeff NHLAWirkkalaChairman | Hardwood Industries, Inc. HONOR


My next role for the NHLA will be serving as the Nominating Committee’s Chairman. If you have an interest in serving, please get in touch with me. In closing, let me give you one final takeaway to think about. All of us are looking to the future and seeing storm clouds on the horizon. Focus on your business and not on what the media is saying. If you are experiencing declining activity, implement your plans for reduced sales. If you are not experiencing problems, stay focused on what makes you successful. If you have not made plans for stormy waters, document a plan of what you will do if tough times find their way to your door.

Because of that, the board has committed 5% of our annual dues to RAHC.

Hello Everyone, It is hard to believe that it has been four years since I accepted the honor of serving as the NHLA Board of Directors president. I served as vice president for the first two years during Darwin Murray’s tenure. It was a tumultuous time. Darwin led us through the trade war with China and the initial stages of COVID-19. The industry was in decline. Darwin’s leadership was so important to our association. I witnessed tough deci sions being made for the long-term betterment of NHLA.

We are so fortunate that forests are such a big part of what we do. A won derful thing to do is to take a walk in one of our glorious forests. It is amaz ing what fresh air, a cool shade tree, and no electronic communications can do to invigorate your spirit.

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6 | SEPTEMBER 2022 HARDWOOD MATTERS WWW.NHLA.COM ACCOLADES ACTIVE U1 MEMBERS Brookside Lumber LLC, Allensville, PA Brothers Lumber Co. Inc., Kimper, KY ETT Fine Woods, DonaldsDonalds, SC S & L Lumber Co., LLCIron River, MI Zuroski Lumber, Wilcox, PA ACTIVE U2 MEMBERS Besse Forest Products Group, Gladstone, MI Byler Lumber Co., Auburn, KY J. Gibson McIlvain, White Marsh, MD ACTIVE U3 MEMBER Meherrin River Forest Products, Alberta, VA ASSOCIATE MEMBER Oakmoor Pallet, Westlake, OH SUSTAINING MEMBERS Biolube Inc., Fort Wayne, IN Blair Logistics, Ensley, AL Center-Line Group, Mansfield, TX Combilift, Monaghan, Ireland Combilift USA, Greensboro, NC Kasco, LLC, St. Louis, MO King City Forwarding USA, Pittsfield, MA Redwood Plastics and Rubber, Langley, BC RESEARCH MEMBER Gabrielle Dean, Glenville, WV Congratualtions to these companies who are celebrating significant milestone anniversaries with NHLA. Welcome New Members MilestoneMembers 5 YEARS BOHNHOFF LUMBER CO. Active U1 | September 2017 BRUGGEMAN LUMBER Active U1 | August 2017 COUNTY LINE HARDWOODS Active U1 | July 2017 DAMASCUS SAWMILL Active U1 | September 2017 FOREST CITY TRADING GROUP Active U2 | September 2017 HOCHSTETLER MILLING LTD. Active U1 | September 2017 MEADOW RIVER HARDWOOD LUMBER CO., LLC Active U1 | September 2017 NEW RIVER HARDWOODS, INC. Active U3 | August 2017 PEACHTREE LUMBER CO. Active U1 | September 2017 TROPICAL FOREST PRODUCTS Active U1 | September 2017 UFP UNION CITY, LLC Active U1 | August 2017 10 YEARS TIMTRADE SRL Partner | July 2012 20 YEARS BERNIE MCGLYNN LUMBER LTD. Active U1 | September 2002 HURON FOREST PRODUCTS, INC. Active U1 | August 2002 NEW LEAF LUMBER CO., LLC Active U1 | September 2002 PA DEVELOPMENTHARDWOODCOUNCIL Research | August 2002 SHOMAKER LUMBER CO. INC. Active U1 | August 2002 TMX SHIPPING CO. Sustaining | July 2002 25 YEARS MENUISEROX INC. Associate | September 1997 75 YEARS YODER LUMBER CO., INC. Active U3 | September 1947 (May-July 2022)


The RossiGroup has been helping customers navigate the global hardwoods industry for almost a century. We have raised the bar with our new state-of-the-art Emporium Mill and kiln facilities, our long-term supply agreements, and our uniquely personal brand of customer service. We deliver a world class selection of hardwoods – including the gold standard in cherry – all sorted, milled and dried to tolerances, consistencies, and yields that were not even possible five years ago.

Visit www.rossilumber.comus or call 860-632-3505 theSee thethroughforesttrees

Problem-solving starts at an early age and continues to change as the child grows. The same is true for associations; most companies don’t realize the impact associations have on their business until they start to grow. The rules we set up for our children are to protect them till they are old enough to understand cause and effect as well as consequences. The same is true for the NHLA Hardwood Lumber Grading Rules. There are other options, but you need to know and understand the basics. If you branch out to make your own rules, keep in mind that the NHLA Rules are the foundation, and you should continue to support them too. Mill runs are fine, but you are giving up value by not fully understanding and embracing the NHLA Rules and grading yourself.  No matter the age of children, parents are always trying to help. The same is true for associations. No matter how big your company is, as sociations try to help solve your problems proactively by giving advice or reactively by helping you out of a challenging situation. Addition ally, parents are always bragging about their children to others, just as associations promote their members to the industry. When it comes to children, we all know the oldest, youngest, or black sheep gets the most attention. As a middle child of 10, I know how important it is to value each member, even the overlooked companies.

You're Our Number One

As a parent myself, I know that I cannot do everything for every child; I just don’t have the same amount of compassion as my wife. My first reaction to any problem is to say, “Life is messy but beauti ful,” followed quickly by, “Get back to work.” My wife’s first reac tion is to hold and comfort. A single association can’t do everything for everyone because sometimes you have slightly different needs at different times that conflict with another’s need or is outside their mandate or area of expertise. That doesn’t make them any less valuable. NHLA, HMA, HF, and all the regional and allied associations are here for your business.


Dallin Brooks NHLA Executive Director |

By DALLIN BROOKS, Executive Director

Ilost my mother last month. She had been a widow for 19 years. My mother wasn’t perfect, but she cared for each of her chil dren. As I think about her life and our family, I am reminded of associations. Parents are a lot like associations. I guess that infers that businesses are a lot like children. Our job, as parents, is to help our children to grow, just as associations help companies grow. We take the moral high ground and teach and promote the best and ideal scenarios. We set up rules and encourage our children to follow them. Not all will, but we love them anyway. It takes more than one parent or association to help a child or a business as each one provides slightly different needs at different times. Most importantly, parents and associations solve problems.


As a widow for 19 years, I could see my mom missing being able to rely on my dad, and I missed his fatherly advice and having an adult relationship with him. Don’t miss out on what the National Hardwood Lumber Association can do for your company. Just like your parents, we want to hear from you. Let us know how you are doing and what we can do to help you. Your parents and your associations have common ground; you’re our number one priority.

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The recent devastating floods in eastern Kentucky have forced thousands of residents from their homes, including many members of our forest industry community who are facing tremendous loss. In response, we at the Kentucky Forest Industries Association have established a Flood Relief Fund to directly provide immediate and long-term assistance to forest industry families impacted by flooding.

Helping Forest Industry Families

Kentucky Forest Industries Association Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charity and contributions are deductible for income tax purposes to the extent allowed by the law in the United States.

Visit for more information on how you can help.



Let’s help them rebuild — together. DONATE TODAY.

Since 1903, The Ohio Forestry Association (OFA) has been working toward a world where everyone is educated about the importance of managed forests for the health of the trees, conserving one of our most precious natural resources, and hardwood in dustry resilience. Forestland makes up 30% of the land base in Ohio, and 96% of those forests are hardwoods. For these native species to thrive, management practices like removing invasive species that outcompete their native counterparts, addressing pests, and removing old or dead growth that puts pressure on a stand are necessary.

Ohio Forestry's Greatest Show

• All the Latest and Greatest Forest Industry Equipment, Supplies, and Services. Crafts

Entertainment • Forest

One of the nation’s largest and oldest forestry demonstrations happens every October under the guidance of OFA near Cambridge, Ohio: The Official Paul Bunyan ShowSM. The Offi cial Paul Bunyan ShowSM is a premier logging and forest products industry exposition full of forestry equipment sales, demonstrations, competitions, entertainment, wood crafts, and fantastic food. This annual event attracts thousands of trade and consumer participants and represents the OFA’s proudest achievement. The Show began in 1957 as a way to expose the public to best practices in forestry, provide technical and safety training to those involved in the industry, and exhibit the economic impact the industry has on the State of Ohio through the persona of one of America’s well-known legends. This continues to be the mission of The Official Paul Bunyan ShowSM today.

Jenna Reese, Executive Director of the Ohio Forestry Association

The Bobtail & Boom Truck Cruise-In is an excellent oppor tunity for your company to gain exposure by sponsoring the Show. As a sponsor, your organization will benefit from extended exposure through media campaigns and promotional efforts. We continue to be grateful to our title sponsor, Husqvarna, for their historical support of the Show. It would not be possible for OFA to host this exhibition without their support. If you are interested in sponsoring The Official Paul Bunyan ShowSM or are interested in one of our limited exhibitor spots, please get in touch with us right away at 888-388-7337 or You can also purchase general admission tickets online.

and Demonstrations • Chainsaw Carvers • Chainsaw Clinics and Demonstrations • Grinders and Chippers Demonstrations • Sawmill Demonstrations • Wood

• Secondary Wood Products • Lumberjack

Ohio’s forest products industry has no intention of engaging in these antics of our society and will continue to persevere in our at tempts to show rather than tell the public how to wisely use this resource through science-based practices.

Demonstrations • Arborist

• Wood Auction - All wood processed during the Show will be auctioned off on Sunday afternoon. Firewood, milled lumber, wood chips, mulch, and more.

and Seminars •

THIS YEAR’S SHOW WILL BE HELD OCTOBER 7-9, 2022, AND FEATURE THE FOLLOWING EVENTS: Ohio State Lumberjack ChampionshipsSM International Lumberjack CompetitionSM Log Loader Equipment Skills Clinics Stoves and Log Burling Industry Education Camping by Reservation or Walk In (water and electric)

• Wood

By JENNA REESE, Executive Director of the Ohio Forestry Association

The task can often feel hopeless as many environmentally conscious individuals are misguided in their zeal to protect our world and look to preservation instead of proper conservation. Unfortunately, we live in a time when the loudest and angriest win these battles in the court of public opinion, making those with the quiet facts seem obsolete.


Competition • Heavy

WWW.NHLA.COM SEPTEMBER 2022 HARDWOOD MATTERS | 13 A.W. Stiles Contractors: Family Owned and Operated Since 1976. Office: (931) 668-8768 • Fax: (931) 668-7327 • 286 Bass Lane, McMinnville, TN 37110 Lee Stiles: or cell (931) 409-0144 • Casey Miller: or cell (931) 607-7451 Through the years A.W. STILES CONTRACTORS has done everything imaginable to lumber dry kilns. From complete new green field fabrication and installation projects to minor repairs. DRY KILNS REPAIRS WE DO ROUTINELY: Complete Energy Efficient Rebuilds • Roof Replacements • Door Replacements, Existing Door Repair Electrical Controls & Upgrades • New Coil/Steam Pipe Replacements • Patching Walls & Roofs No matter the size of your kiln project, We will be happy to take a look at it with you!

Congratulations to the Graduates of the 199th Class of the NHLA Inspector Training School

Julian Watson, Emporium Hardwoods

Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PA DOA)

Front row, seated leF t to right: Norbert Sackmann, Clayton Robinson, Travis Perry, Roman Matyushchenko (Instructor), Blake Andrews, Julian Watson, Zach Hunt. Back row, seated leF t to right: Christian Nagle, Stephen Minick, Jordan Hockenburry, Jake Milford, Philip A. Mallery. not pictured: Matthew Troyer.

The summer program was held in Clearfield, Pennsylvania through a partnership with a number of affiliated associations and a grant awarded through the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture's "Commonwealth Specialty Crop Block Grant Program."

NHLA would like to acknowledge and thank the following groups for making the summer program possible.

The National Hardwood Lumber Association celebrated the graduation of the 199th class of the Inspector Training School on Friday, July 29, 2022. Twelve students received the certificate of completion.

Enrollment is now open for the 200th class of the NHLA Inspector Training School. Class 200 begins on September 26, 2022 at NHLA headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee. To enroll or learn more about the Program, please visit

Stephen Minick, Matson Lumber Company

Keystone Wood Products Association (KWPA)


Pennsylvania Forestry Association (PFA)

Pennsylvania Hardwoods Development Council (PA HDC)

Northern Tier Hardwood Association (NTHA)

Pennsylvania Forest Products Association (PFPA)

Jordan Hockenburry, Walker Lumber Company

Norbert Sackmann, Snowbelt Hardwoods Matthew Troyer, WLH Land & Lumber LLC

Travis Perry, MacDonald & Owen Lumber Company Clayton Robinson, Broadleaf Lumber


Philip A Mallery, Wolverine Hardwoods, Inc. Jake Milford, Horizon Wood Products

Blake Andrews, Emporium Hardwoods

Zach Hunt, Matson Lumber Company

Christian Nagle, Matson Lumber Company

Allegheny Hardwood Utilization Group (AHUG) CORPORATE OFFICE 727 Arendell Street, PO Box 747 | Morehead City, NC 28557 Tel: 252-726-1111 | Fax: 252-726-9097 VIRGINIA OFFICE 2105 McComas Way, Suite 300 | Virginia Beach, VA 23456 Tel: 757-563-6200 | Fax: 757-563-0300 DETAIL EastExportersServicingFORWARDMINDEDTHINKINGU.S.Lumber&LogfromallU.S.Ports:Coast,Gulf&WestCoast We pride ourselves in providing an individualized service, custom designed to each customer’s requirements. We are committed to the best possible service; utilizing our extensive experience and skills, coupled with our sophisticated computerized traffic management & documentation TRANSPORTATIONsystem.MANAGEMENTEXPERTS

The Hardwood Federation has fought for you, your companies, and your employees for almost 20 years. We remain steadfast in our mis sion to strongly advocate on behalf of U.S. hardwood businesses and their employees to federally elected officials regardless of party. We are on the political front line for you, fighting every day so you can have a successful tomorrow.

LEGISLATIVE LOG Welcome to Cleveland! The Hardwood Federation is excited to be a part of this wonderful event. Congratulations to the Board of Directors, Board President Jeff Wirkkala, Executive Director Dallin Brooks, and the entire National Hardwood Lumber Association staff for putting together what promises to be another successful, exciting, and inspiring Annual Convention.

Congressional Leaders clearly understand the valuable contribu tions the production of hardwood timber and products can make on multiple levels of the U.S. economy. In 2022 the Hardwood Federation’s top priorities are engaging the hardwood industry in economic recovery and linking the industry’s environmental stewardship to the Biden Administration’s carbon reduction goals. In addition, we will continue to advocate for other important issues that impact hardwood companies’ bottom line, •including:Regulatory and tax reform, • The carbon storage benefits of hardwood products, • Transportation, • International trade, • Renewable energy, and • Green building.

The Hardwood Federation: Working for You

By DANA COLE, Executive Director of the Hardwood Federation


The Hardwood Federation leverages the voices of NHLA leaders to make sure the Biden White House, Administration Officials, and

Having a coordinated, consistent, and united voice in Washington is critical for the U.S. hardwood industry. It is more important than ever in election years when old members retire (voluntarily or not), and new members take their oath of office. Our job of educating those in public office is never done. Although making our message heard can feel like an almost impossible task, we must continue to reach out, communicate and advocate. Failure is only assured by inaction. NHLA and its members are significant and highly valued contributors to our efforts.

". . . we must continue to reach out, communicate and advocate. Failure is only assured by inaction."

• Write letters to, email and call Congressional offices to share concerns about bad policy and applaud good policy; and

The NHLA provides crucial financial and advocacy support to the Hardwood Federation. Still, at the same time, the direct participation of the NHLA’s membership cannot be underestimated, and we are grateful.

The Hardwood Federation is proud to partner with and represent NHLA and its members in our nation’s capital, Washington, D.C.

• Come to Washington to meet and discuss policies impacting the industry with Members of Congress;


• Educate Members of Congress by hosting them in mills, yards, and facilities to give them a first-hand look at the industry;

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• contribute financial resources, both on an individual and company basis, to the Hardwood Federation’s Political Action Committee and Administrative Operating Fund, both essential o our continued success. Please support us at be at the NHLA convention and look forward to meeting you and discussing our efforts in Washington. Have a wonderful convention!

NHLA members:

Since NHLA first interviewed Tropical Forest Products in 2018, the company has grown exponentially. Tropical Forest Products, founded in 2017, operates throughout the United States and Canada. Due to the company experiencing a rapid sales expansion and trending triple-digit growth annually, they have expanded into new facilities over the last year, with over 250,000 square feet of warehouse space. The company has its head office in Mississauga, Ontario, and other locations in Summerville, South Carolina; Miami, Florida; Stockton, California; and Edison, New Jersey.

Inside Tropical Forest Products new 150,000 sq. ft. facility in Mississauga, Ontario

Tropical Forest Products brought Brian aboard to open a new distribu tion facility in Charleston, South Carolina. Lotz continues, “The new facility will have full custom milling capabilities. We are branching out to bring this added value to our customers because super durable ex otic hardwoods are difficult to mill. They are hard on equipment, and as a result, a limited number of people want to mill these species. We’re investing in a very focused milling operation to handle these species. The new facility should open within the next 12 months.”



Brian Lotz, the General Manager for US operations, joined the Tropi cal Forest Products team a year ago. Brian fills us in on his background, “My entire career focus has been on naturally durable hardwoods and their exterior applications. From the bridge industry to the boardwalk industry, onto the decking industry, the cladding industry, and the roof decking industry. I’ve walked through all aspects of the business over the 41-plus years of my career. I love this industry. I love everything about it. It has just been a marvelous place to spend a career.”

Tropical Forest Products: IN EXPANSION AND GROWTH



Tropical Forest Products has three brands that stand out from the crowd; the Black Label brand, Grand Reserve Limited Exotic Lum ber, and a sustainability program called Legal Lumber. Each brand provides Tropical Forest Products with a unique asset.

Brian tells us about their premiere brand, saying, “Our Black Label brand is our quality brand associated with the decking and cladding products we sell. Black Label represents a hand-selected architectural grade, what I like to call the filet mignon of the log.”

Tropical Forest Products has experienced exponential growth thanks to expanding the services they offer. Brian says, “Our services helped us flourish, but you cannot discount the growth attributed to having a strong focus on relationships. When there is more supply than demand, buyers move toward the companies with whom they have formed strong relationships. If they know you and your company, they will still come to you first when demand exceeds supply because they are comfortable with the people they trust.”


Brian went on to say, “Grand Reserve Limited Exotic Lumber is Tropical Forest Products’ newest line of specialty high-end exotic woods. These species are desired for their architectural character and beauty. Currently, there are 26 species (and growing) of high-end Super Exotic Species that Tropical Forest Products will make avail able to the industry. We will even offer rare wood species such as Brazilian Blackheart (Pau Santo).”

All Tropical Forest products are certified as sustainable by either the Forest Stewardship Council or by Tropical Forest Products’ internal program, called Legal Lumber, which allows third-party NGOs to audit their transactions. Legal Lumber gives Tropical Forest Prod ucts credibility in the industry for its commitment to sustainability. Legal Lumber supports global forest initiatives, promotes environ mental benefits, and uses renewable forest-based resources.

Successful companies often have something special that sets them apart from other companies; Brian claims, “What separates us from our competition is the speed at which we work and the investment in our inventory levels. But the more important factor setting us apart from our competitors is our commitment to the environment and environmental compliance. Looking forward, Tropical Forest Products is focused on growth and offering more and more value. Our goal is to be everything our customers need.” “Our services helped us flour ish, but you cannot discount the growth attributed to having a strong focus on relationships. When there is more supply than demand, buyers move toward the companies with whom they have formed strong relationships. If they know you and your com pany, they will still come to you first when demand exceeds sup ply because they are comfortable with the people they trust.”

The Legal Lumber program was established to show that Tropical For est Products adheres to the US Lacey Act. (A law banning trafficking in fish, wildlife, or plants illegally taken, possessed, transported, or sold.) They use third-party NGOs to verify their legality by auditing every transaction that they have as an importer.

You can reach out to Tropical Forest Products online at, via email at, or by phone at either 905-672-8000 (CDN) or 855-344-4500 (US).

Tropical Forest Products new 50,000 sq. ft. facility in Charleston, SC Brian Lotz General Manager for US Operations

Speaking of strong relationships, Brian is thankful for his relation ship with NHLA, saying, “Our NHLA membership is impor tant because it gives us broad exposure to the top consumers of hardwood products in the industry. The NHLA grading rules are invaluable to grading our domestic hardwood products. NHLA also provides guidance and services critical to participating in the indus try. But the most important thing our NHLA membership provides is credibility. We are proud to be a member of NHLA.”

Tropical Forest Products continues to rapidly expand into the domestic and exotic hardwood market. They carry every single do mestic species in 4/4 all the way to 16/4. They custom kiln dry their rift and quarter-sawn white oak from 4/4 to 10/4.

Leadership Styles: What Type of Leader are You?


Adam Conway believes that Larry Evans was the best leader in the hardwood industry, “Larry Evans was a business mentor and close friend during his time leading the team at ITL. His work ethic was

Capable leaders are essential for making the crucial decisions that shape everything around us. No organization can run without leadership, yet being a leader requires more than merely experience or a C-suite title. Leaders at every level offer direction, inspiration, and clarity while fostering confidence in the people around them.

John continued, “Dana is a great leader because she expects the best from everyone she works with and works hard to ensure everyone has an equal chance to succeed. Here at PLM, we have borrowed from her political actions and passion for pushing for change in the insurance industry. Without her efforts lobbying Congress on several key policies, the hardwood space would surely be several years behind its current progress.”


The significance of effective leadership cannot be overstated. Leaders shape our countries, communities, and organizations.

Poor leaders are easy to pick out of the crowd. It isn’t challenging to recognize the flaws in leaders like the fictional Michael Scott from “The Office.” But the great leaders are often harder to identify. Effective leaders often share characteristics that aren’t flashy but

Thequiet.Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) identified ten qualities as essential leadership characteristics. The qualities include self-aware ness, integrity, the ability to learn quickly, courage, respect, empathy, influence, gratitude, effective communication, and delegation. If you seek out people with these ten characteristics, the great leaders will become so evident that you’ll wonder why you didn’t spot them immediately. NHLA held an informal poll, and the leaders that rose to the top of the lists included Dana Cole with the Hardwood Federation, Adam Conway with Superior Hardwoods of Ohio, John Smith at Pennsyl vania Lumbermens Mutual Insurance Company (PLM), and Sebastian Church with Church and Church Lumber.

Dana Cole with the Hardwood Federation was the first person that came to mind when John Smith at PLM was asked who he thinks is a prominent leader in the hardwood industry. Smith said, “Dana Cole’s work while leading the Hardwood Federation has been incredible. Dana is dedicated to advancing the lumber industry forward. Her work inspiring political action from our fellow industry members is admirable and has led to significant change within our industry. Further, her willingness to get involved with the Real American Hardwood Coalition demonstrates a commit ment to the industry beyond the scope of her responsibility.”

Meanwhile, Sebastian Church with Church and Church Lumber had a different person in mind, “There are so many great leaders in our industry. We have some of the most genuine people I have ever met! It makes me smile to think about it. Tony Honeycutt from Mullican Flooring is one of our industry’s great leaders. Tony is sharp and selfless. His motive is to see all of us in the Appalachian Region be successful.”

22 | SEPTEMBER 2022 HARDWOOD MATTERS WWW.NHLA.COM legendary, his sincerity was genuine, and his passion for the great people and products was inspiring. As a young man, I watched from a distance as Larry interacted with his employees. He was a company man who understood and believed in the organization’s mission. I watched as Larry managed conflict and wore down those who thought differently with tenacious consistency. He persuaded employees not to relent but to embrace and have confidence as they did their job. I am certain Larry never knew of my observations, and I am reminded daily to present my best professional self confidently should there be a young person quietly observing as I had.”

Above: Adam Conway and his father Emmett Left: John Smith (PLM)

There are also transformational leaders in the hardwood industry.

Transformational Leadership is all about having a vision. Transforma tional Leaders often have big ideas and can quickly get their employees to jump on board. Transformational leaders excite employees, making them willing to be loyal and productive, committing their time and energy to achieve the leader’s vision. These leaders create a great work culture because everyone works toward the same goal together, and lines of communication are open between employees and leadership. Transformational leaders are often considered inspirational and are known for having big personalities.

Well-known Transformational leaders include Oprah, Jeff Bezos (creator of Amazon), and Mark Zuckerberg.

An individual’s leadership style determines how you influence those around you and, ultimately, the overall success of your business. Some people naturally have leadership qualities, but anyone can develop them by learning from the leaders in their life and reflecting on their own actions to see how they affect those around them. There are four widely accepted styles of leadership: Transformational, Democratic, Autocratic, and Laissez-Faire. There is no right or wrong leadership style. No style is better than the others. Your style is just that: yours.

John Smith with PLM is a Transformational Leader, saying, “In my time at PLM, my goal has been to inspire my team, the insurance industry, and the hardwood lumber industry to innovate, improve and continue to grow. From continuing education to philanthropy, we have always strived to take the first step toward providing clients with the insurance solutions they need to protect their business.

— Adam Conway

When we identify a new technology that could be of value to our customers, we always jump at the opportunity to provide it. For example, the hardwood lumber industry has long struggled with "Larry Evans was a business mentor and close friend during his time leading the team at ITL. His work ethic was legendary, his sincerity was genuine, and his passion for the great people and products created by our hardwood industry was inspiring."


So, let’s examine each leadership style to discover where you fit.

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Some famous Democratic leaders include the late Walt Disney, Apple CEO Tim Cook, and former president Dwight D. Eisenhower.

AUTOCRATIC LEADERSHIP (also known as Authoritarian Leadership)

Dana Cole with the Hardwood Federation considers herself a combi nation of a Democratic leader and a Laissez Fair leader. Dana explains, “I always want to get input and opinions from team members and strive to develop the trust that allows them to be somewhat self-direct ed, but always retain the responsibility for final decision making.”

Adam Conway with Superior Hardwoods of Ohio can relate to Dana, falling under two leadership styles, saying, “I would suggest that the occasional Autocrat in me soon gives way to the Laissezfaire. I believe in the power of a focused team committed to the organization’s success. This could be a six-man team on the green chain or, collectively, the hundreds of employees and affiliates in our organization. Our success has been to define our vision, set perfor mance expectations, and instill confidence in management to Sebastian Church Dana Cole speaking at the 2019 NHLA Annual Convention in New Orleans.

Well-known Autocratic leaders include New England Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick and President Abraham Lincoln.

WWW.NHLA.COM24 | SEPTEMBER 2022 HARDWOOD MATTERS distracted driving. In response, we quickly partnered with compa nies that offer continuous driver monitoring and tools to restrict distractions so lumber businesses could ensure their staff was acting as safely as possible.”

Renowned Laissez-Faire leaders include Steve Jobs, Ronald Reagan, and Warren Buffet.

Sebastian Church with Church and Church Lumber identifies himself as having a blend of Transformational and Autocratic leadership, saying,” It’s great to have a vision for your business. Still, you must be strategic in accomplishing that vision in the same instance. At Church and Church Lumber, our employees make that vision happen. They make it happen for our customers and us.”

Democratic leaders want to hear from their subordinates; they typically have an open-door policy, allowing anyone to ask questions or share ideas. With this leadership style, everyone’s opinion is valued and contributes to making decisions. Don’t be mistaken; Democratic leaders are still the ultimate decision-makers, but their approach to decision-making allows employees to have a real stake in the outcome. Democratic leaders inspire their subordinates; they offer praise and constructive criticism in equal measure; and are great communicators, making them easily approachable.

DEMOCRATIC LEADERSHIP (also known as Participative Leadership)

Autocratic leaders like to have complete control over the decisionmaking process, which is highly effective when decision-making is urgent or routine. Autocratic leaders determine the organization’s direction, from strategy to policies and procedures, and then order what every employee will do. Autocratic leaders often have a “my way or the highway” approach. They do not care for collaboration or feedback. Autocratic leaders are decisive, self-confident, and keep their eye on the goal. People often look up to them.

Don’t be fooled by the name; Laissez-Faire leaders aren’t indifferent to the things happening around them. Laissez-Faire leaders trust their employees to get things done by empowering them to make their own decisions while providing praise and constructive criticism when necessary. Laissez-Faire leaders don’t ask constant questions or micromanage. They are experts at delegating and instilling confi dence in their employees by assigning projects without oversite.


“I always want to get input and opinions from team members and strive to develop the trust that allows them to be somewhat self-directed, but always retain the responsibility for final decision making.”


Leadership is constantly evolving, so influen tial leaders always find ways to enhance their leadership style. Dana Cole gives some great advice, “I find observing other leaders I respect and learning from their successes . . . and sometimes failures . . . is an excellent way to identify strengths I should build upon and opportunities to develop better skills and Ifabilities.”youwant to be counted among the best leaders, learn your leadership style, and find a great leader to look up to. There are some good examples in this article. Even if the only leaders around you are poor leaders, you can learn from their mistakes. Think about how you would do it differently. Remember all you’ve learned and you’ll be an influential leader as well.


Resaw execute our strategies. Being present is the best way to feel the pulse of a production operation, but we trust in our employees to solve problems and have found microman agement to be counterproductive. That being said, my door is always open, and I enjoy working with our entire team.”

— Dana Cole

he hardwood lumber industry has always been a cyclical market; many have enjoyed a rather long and prosperous couple of years. Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. It has always been my policy to inspect lumber the same way, no matter what the market is doing; that way, no changes are needed when the market slows.


Down Markets Don't Alter the Hardwood Lumber Grading Rules

By DANA SPESSERT, Chief Inspector


Without knowing what Paragraph 59 is, the Rule states that if a split is less than 12 inches, it is allowed. Some confusion comes in when the split is longer than 12 inches. The Rule states that when the split is 12 inches or shorter, it is allowed; when it is longer than 12 inches, it must be measured to determine if it is longer than two times the Surface Measure in inches. This is measured from both ends of the board in the Standard Length, and all splits exceeding the 12-inch threshold are added together to determine the aggre gate; any portion of the splits in the overlength is not measured.

The split limitation for FAS can also be a bit confusing. Let’s break down the split limitation from the Rules book on page 14, paragraph 58: “Splits shall not exceed in the aggregate in inches in length twice the surface measure of the piece.”

This part of the limitation is simple to understand; simply take the Surface Measure and multiply by two, and that is the total number of inches allowed. However, the remainder of that sentence is “except when one foot or shorter and covered by Paragraph 59.”

The last section of the Split limitation is: “In special widths 10 in. or wider, splits shall not exceed in the aggregate in inches in length the surface measure of the piece, except when one foot or shorter and covered by Paragraph 59.” This states that in 10 inches and wider orders, the splits cannot exceed 1-inch per Surface Measure foot, except when 12 inches and shorter. I hope this helps you, and remember, if you always grade lumber by the Rules, market conditions are less stressful!

Please stop by the NHLA Inspection Services booth during the 2022 NHLA Annual Convention and speak to your area National Inspec tor OR watch one of our demonstrations and have your questions answered. I’ll also be at the Convention, so find me if you have ques tions. I hope to see everyone in Cleveland, OH.

The wane on FAS is straightforward; there is an allowance of ½ the length on both edges. The proper way to measure the wane is to measure the square edge wood and assure that at least half the length of the board is wane free. There is no width limitation on the FAS side of the board in FAS 1 Face. This limitation is on page 14, paragraph 57 of the NHLA Rules book: “Wane shall not exceed on either edge of the piece over one-half the length in the aggregate.” The “aggregate” means the total sum.

There are two more sections of the Split limitation: “Splits may diverge up to one inch to the lineal foot, except when one foot or shorter and covered by Paragraph 59.” This is measured by measuring 12 inches on the edge of the board and then measuring the distance from the edge of the board to the split at the 0 point and the 12-inch point to determine if it exceeds 1 inch, only when the split exceeds the 12-inch threshold.

I would like to explain a few FAS limitations in this month’s article:

Wane on FAS 1 Face is the same as FAS on the better face (1/2 length on both edges). The wane on the 1 Common side is also allowed to be ½ the length on both edges and cannot exceed 1/3 width of the piece. The proper way to measure the width of the wane is to measure the width of the wane at the widest points, from both edges, and verify there is at least 2/3 of the wood without wane the full length of the board. This limitation is on page 16, paragraph 64 of the Rules book: “Wane on the No. 1 Common side is limited to the following: the width of wane from both edges, when added together, cannot exceed 1/3 the total width of the piece. The total length of wane on either edge cannot exceed 1/2 the length.”


Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber.


Intro to LumberHardwoodGrading

Nov. 28-Dec. 9

Venue: Cumberland Mountain State Park Location: Crossville, TN Instructor: Benji Richards, ITS Instructor

Inspector Training School


Online Training Program MODULE 1 Two weeks of hands-on training.

Venue: NHLA Headquarters Location: Memphis, TN Module 2: Online study Module 3: Three weeks hands-on training and final testing at NHLA headquarters. Instructor: Roman Matyushchenko, ITS Instructor

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber.



Venue: NHLA Headquarters Location: Memphis, TN Instructor: Roman Matyushchenko, ITS Instructor

Venue: NHLA Headquarters Location: Memphis, TN Instructor: Roman Matyushchenko, ITS Instructor

Intro to LumberHardwoodGrading

Register for classes at

Intro to LumberHardwoodGrading Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber. Venue: Wood-Mizer, LLC Location: Indianapolis, IN Instructor: Kevin Evilsizer, National Inspector

Intro to LumberHardwoodGrading Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber.

Inspector Training School 200th Class Traditional 8-week hands-on training to achieve the certificate of completion in Hardwood Lumber Inspection.

Venue: Cherokee Wood Products, Inc. Location: Upland, CA



Instructor: Dana Spessert, NHLA Chief Inspector


Sept. 26-Nov. 18

Inspector Training School

Online Training Program MODULE 1 Two weeks of hands-on training.

Visit to find our online learning portal. In this area, you will find and access live online courses and webinar replays. Webinar replays are FREE to NHLA Members. Non-members can view for a fee.

Inspector Training School


Venue: NHLA Headquarters Location: Memphis, TN Module 2: Online study Module 3: Three weeks hands-on training and final testing at NHLA headquarters. Instructor: Roman Matyushchenko, ITS Instructor

NHLA Grade Certified. Graded after Kiln-drying.

Venue: NHLA Headquarters Location: Memphis, TN Module 2: Online study Module 3: Three weeks hands-on training and final testing at NHLA headquarters. Instructor: Roman Matyushchenko, ITS Instructor




Inspector Training School 201st Class Traditional 8-week hands-on training to achieve the certificate of completion in Hardwood Lumber Inspection.

WWW.NHLA.COM SEPTEMBER 2022 HARDWOOD MATTERS | 29 “Earning my certificate from the NHLA Inspector Training School was a great opportunity for me to start a career in any facet of the hardwood industry, whether sales, operating machinery, grading, or drying lumber. It is a great alternative to college and creates an easier path to management.” Kyle Stepherson 188th Class | NHLA Inspector Training School Alumnus 694 State Rt. DD, Fayette, MO 65248 Tel: (660) 248-3000 Container Loading • Veneer Logs 4/4 thru 16/4 Walnut • 2,000,000 kiln-dried inventory

Online Training Program MODULE 1 Two weeks of hands-on training.

Intro to LumberHardwoodGrading Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber. Venue: NHLA Headquarters Location: Memphis, TN Instructor: Roman Matyushchenko, ITS Instructor



Venue: NHLA Headquarters Location: Memphis, TN Instructor: Roman Matyushchenko, ITS Instructor


• Possess the ability to accurately apply NHLA rules



• Ability to travel territory assigned; some overnight travel is required. Excellent selling, communication, and negotiation skills Prioritizing, time management, and organizational skills. Strong teamwork skills and work ethic. High School diploma or equivalent Valid drivers license Minimum 3 years of sales experience – knowledge of the hardwood lumber industry and grades would be helpful but is not required.

Benefits We offer competitive wages as

*Waiting period may apply, *Only full-time employees are eligible.

• Maintain knowledge of competitor products and identify and report intelligence on competitor pricing or marketing strategies.

• Submit prospective customer engagement plans, and schedule client meetings and action plans for follow-up.

• Minimum of one (1) year of experience grading kiln-dried domestic lumber – this is not an entry-level position

General Responsibilities include: Midwest Hardwood is searching for hardwood lumber grader/inspectors. This is a great opportunity for an individual with prior lumber grading expe rience. This person would be grading green or kiln-dried hardwood lumber with an emphasis on quality assurance. *We have openings at all locations throughout Wisconsin.

• Expand market awareness of our products and our industry experience by communicating our products and services effectively.

How to Apply Send your resume to: Midwest Hardwood, LLC 9540 83rd Ave North | Maple Grove, MN 55369 608-768-4735

• Identify and resolve customer concerns; recommend a course of action to alleviate these concerns in the future.

Skills & Experience Required

• Versatile and enthusiastic with high energy and exceptionally self-motivated to succeed.

• Attending and participating in trade shows, conferences, and other marketing events.

• Proficiency with Microsoft Office, using a laptop, smartphone, and related products.

• Experience and ability to work in a fast-paced manufacturing environment with a focus on safety and quality Salary & Benefits

• Communicate sales opportunities as well as customer concerns or suggestions.

• Preparing responses to RFP (request for proposals) and RFI (request for information).

• Submit a variety of sales status reports as required, including activity, closings, follow-up, and adherence to goals.

Skills & Experience Required

• Close and grow sales with potential clients in our marketplace.

• NHLA certified or equivalent experience

• Demonstrated selling experience and working knowledge of sales forecasting and account management. & well as


an excellent benefits package, •including:$70,000 plus commission • Medical, Dental, and Vision Health Benefits • 401K Retirement Planning with Company Match • Healthcare Spending Accounts • Tuition Reimbursement • Growth and Advancement Opportunities • Generous Paid Time Off • Profit Sharing Bonus How to Apply Send your resume to: Missouri Walnut Group 11417 Oak Rd | Neosho, Missouri 64850 417-455-0972 30 | SEPTEMBER 2022 HARDWOOD MATTERS WWW.NHLA.COM NHLA JOB BOARD Here you will find our current job listings. To see more details or to post a job, visit

• Manage and interpret customer requirements.


• Maintain awareness of pertinent client information, future plans, and payment performance; communicate any client information that may affect company decisions to appropriate departments as needed.

• Maintaining records of customer communications and contact information as required within CRM.

We offer competitive salary, health insurance, vacation, 401k, clothing allowance, relocation assistance, and many other employee perks.

• Coordinates company staff to provide exemplary service to customers.

WALNUT GROUP Missouri Walnut Group is seeking a motivated individual to join their Sales Team. Essential duties and responsibilities include the following. Other duties may be assigned.

• Performs all other related duties as assigned by management.

• Thorough knowledge of the NHLA rules and at least 2 years of grading experience is necessary.

We offer a competitive salary, health insurance, vacation, 401k, clothing allowance, relocation assistance, and many other employee-perks * Waiting period may apply, *Only full-time employees are eligible.

The Risk Assessment Representative will be responsible for assisting our Risk Assessment Director, Corey Bounds, by visiting various forest product insureds across the region. They will also assist with compiling and review ing reports based on these visits and working with our customers to ensure compliance is received. Risk Assessment consultation and understanding are vital to the success of our Underwriting team, so this role entails work ing closely with our group of Underwriters to ensure we are always doing what is best for the client and our carrier partners.

Our ideal candidate for this position is self-motivated and capable of work ing independently while promoting the success of our entire Continental Underwriters, Inc. team. They are eager to learn, curious and inquisitive, consultative in their approach, and able to learn from constructive criti cism. If this sounds like you, let’s talk about your future today!

Skills & Experience Required

Salary & Benefits TBD How to Apply Send your resume to: Continental Underwriters Inc. 3435 A West Leigh Street | Richmond, VA 23230 804-643-7800

Midwest Hardwood is searching for hardwood lumber grader/inspectors. This is a great opportunity for an individual with prior lumber grading expe rience. This person would be grading green or kiln-dried hardwood lumber with an emphasis on quality assurance. *We have openings at all locations throughout Wisconsin. Skills & Experience Required • NHLA certified or equivalent experience Possess the ability to accurately apply NHLA rules

• Competitive compensation structure

• Minimum of one (1) year of experience grading kiln-dried domestic lumber – this is not an entry-level position

How to Apply Send your resume to: Midwest Hardwood, LLC 9540 83rd Ave North | Maple Grove, MN 55369 608-768-4735

• Reporting daily to our home office in Richmond, Virginia, except when traveling.


• Willing to travel approximately 50% of the time.



• Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

Jim C Hamer 11474 Spruce River Road | Danville, West Virginia 25053 304-369-3889

• Upgrading Lumber when applicable is a must.


• Medical, dental, vision, life insurance


• Retirement plan • Safety bonus How to Apply Send your resume to:


• Attendance bonus • Paid vacation and holidays

Salary & Benefits

• Strong mechanical aptitude and problem-solving skills (ASP/CSP certifications, desired but not required).

Here you will find our current job listings. To see more details or to post a job, visit

Jim C. Hamer in Danville, West Virginia, is seeking a motivated individual to inspect Green Lumber in accordance with NHLA rules. The candidate will also lead, guide, and direct the Lumber Stackers and promote an atmo sphere of Safety and Quality.

• Experience and ability to work in a fast-paced manufacturing environment with a focus on safety and quality

• Excellent attention to detail, time management, and organizational skills.


• This position does not necessarily require prior experience in insurance or risk assessment. We are looking for someone with the right attitude, personality, and potential; we can teach the technical skills!

Skills & Experience Required

Salary & Benefits


Importantly, total U.S. hardwood lumber exports have now climbed back above 2016 levels, even as shipments to China continue to languish at roughly half their pre-trade war volumes. Much of the recent growth has been to Europe and Mexico, two markets that grew very little during the trade war despite the increased availability and historically low prices of lumber.

On a percentage basis, hardwood log exports have climbed faster than lumber exports since the early months of the pandemic. Unlike lumber, however, China is largely responsible for resurging log exports. Total U.S. hardwood log exports in May 2022 were the fifth highest ever recorded and the largest since May 2018, when China began enforcing an old law requiring imported logs to be treated in their country of origin. Log ship ments to China were elevated throughout 2017, and jumped more than 30% in the three months before that ruling went into effect, suggesting Chinese importers may have had more forewarning of the impending crackdown than their North American suppliers. Still, May 2022 ship ments to China were back above typical 2017 levels, and total U.S. log exports have gotten an additional boost in the last six months from strong growth to Vietnam, Italy and Japan.


Global demand for U.S. hardwood lumber has been climb ing and shifting since the fourth quarter of 2019. China ac counted for much of the decline in global demand during the trade war, but has accounted for almost none of the net growth in exports over the last two years. Yes, China is still the largest single market for U.S. hardwood lumber, by a wide margin, but its share of total U.S. exports has fallen from an average of 54% during the two years prior to the trade war to just 34% during the most recent two years.


Hardwood Markets Matter and it is important for NHLA to share market details of the entire Hardwood Industry. We appreciate the support of allied associations and publishers in gathering and sharing this important market information that can help you understand the complete hardwood industry picture.

Source: Hardwood Review

18016014012010080604020Q2 2016 Q2 2017 Q2 2018 Q2 2019 Q2 2020 Q2 2021 Q2 2022 BF)(MillionShipmentsMonthlyAvg. U.S. Hardwood LumberTOTALExports CHINA OTHER

Thus, over the last several years, global markets for hardwood lumber have not only become considerably more diversified, but volumes have also returned nearly to the levels of 2016-2017, when demand was so heavily centered in China. Log demand, in contrast, while back up to pretrade war levels, remains heavily concentrated in China. If we discount the volume of mostly low-grade logs that ship to Canada—which ac count for one-third of all U.S. hardwood log exports—China accounts for 73% of the rest, not far off its peak market share prior to the rule change.


Through the latest available data (May, 2022), US hardwood lumber exports have shown continued growth across major markets, building back trade flows that were decimated in 2019 and 2020. By volume year over year, US lumber to China is up 5%, Canada is up 9%, Europe is up 52%, and Mexico is up 28%. In particular, red oak lumber to Europe showed impressive growth; 58% by volume to 25,000 m3 through May. This is an encouraging trend, as wider adoption of red oak lumber in Europe and elsewhere can help offset some of the lost market in China due to the Trade War. The only major market for US hardwood lumber that declined in early 2022 is Vietnam (down 11% by volume), due in large part to supply chain issues, COVID shutdowns, labor shortages, and lower furniture orders from Europe and the USA. Hardwood log exports are up 8% YOY to 917,000 m3, with China up 14% and the EU and UK up 32%. Exports of US hardwood veneer also grew 2% by volume to 86 million m2, with Canada growing by 15% and the EU and UK importing 8% more veneer. Railway Tie Association (RTA) Procurement Trends Dashboard below represents the monthly opinions of "in-the field" wood tie buyers who procure untreated crossties from sawmills in their specific regions. The data is submitted to RTA within the first two weeks of the month following the reporting period covered. The output is in two forms - monthly and a 12-month running view (which started in July 2016). You can choose individual regions or grouped regions from the dropdown menus above for both the monthly and trend data. All the charts on the page will change based on your dropdown selections. Since the information provided represents a snapshot-in-time-opinion of individuals, each working for a variety of tie procurement companies, RTA does not warrant nor accept responsibility for the accuracy of the data generated. For questions or feedback please email us. ® 2016 Railway Tie Association.

NEW ENGLAND/LAKE STATES Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, N Indiana, N Illinois: Grade lumber markets are slowing. Some places shipping issues remain and have caused orders to be cancelled. Pallet lumber still high at around $900/mbf and no risk of downgrade. EASTERN North & South Carolina: Lower demand four grade lumber and increase so I’m out production is starting to favor the crosstie





West Virginia: Grade lumber prices have dropped some with Red Oak lumber prices softening the most.

Pennsylvania: Grade lumber markets are softening. Weather has been good for logging.

Poplar and Pallet are slowing down. Competition remains high. Wet weather this last month has slowed logging. Low grade Oaks continue to fall in price and demand. Fuel prices are still high and hurting loggers and sawmillers.

Central & S Arkansas, NW Louisiana: Some mills are still cutting a lot of pine. Red oak lumber is falling so tie production should pickup.

SOUTHEAST Mississippi: Log inventories are dropping intentionally. many mills don't want large log inventory due to lumber prices falling.


The HMR Demand Index (HDI) is a feature in HMR Executive® that illustrates monthly trends in reported demand from 10 major domestic markets for hardwood lumber. Components of the index are color coded with various shades of blue when demand is slow, they transition to gray when demand is fair, and then to light red and deep red when demand moves from good to strong.

New England 2: Too Dry MIDSOUTH SE Missouri, N Arkansas: lumber has soften some . down about 275.00 to 300.00 other than that trying to run steady E Texas, NW Louisiana: The market is holding its own in my area, the woods are dry so logs are moving , the paper mills are still holding back on chips and fuel with both quantity and on price . Hardwood pulpwood is still hard to get rid off as well.

New England 1: Slowing lumber markets has mills backing off of buying logs. Weather conditions have been good. Still some bottlenecks with labor and trucking. Lumber buyers are slowing purchases and starting to reevaluate prices. Tie production is becoming more favorable for those who can still move side lumber.

■ Follow @RealAmericanHardwood on Instagram and Facebook, and tag #RealAmericanHardwood in your social media posts.

Visit to learn more and get on board.

How You Can Get Involved

■ Use the Real American Hardwood logo on your sales and marketing communications, facilities and vehicles, products, and website.


Where We’ve Been


Moving the campaign forward and expanding its reach will take the support of the entire industry—for the benefit of the entire industry.

Where We’re Going, Together

The next steps will have the largest impact on the industry and require buy-in from all industry stakeholders. The Coalition is preparing to launch a comprehensive promotion campaign—including a consumer-oriented website, in-store promotion at top big box stores, a broad media relations campaign, social media influencer partnerships, print and web advertising, and much more.

It’s no secret, the hardwood industry has been losing market share to products that look like wood, but have none of the natural benefits or authentic attributes of Real American Hardwood™ products. In order to recapture market share and improve industry stability, hardwood organizations united to form the Real American Hardwood Coalition.

The goal is to develop a national consumer promotion campaign on a scale that’s never been seen before. And a lot has been accomplished in a short period of time—including the completion of an extensive consumer research initiative, establishing brand guidelines, registering trademarks, and launching social media profiles.

■ Make a voluntary contribution to help fund the consumer promotion campaign.

Where We Are

PlainsawnAsh White Oak Riftsawn White Oak Quartersawn White Oak Plainsawn Red Oak Hard WalnutMapleCherrySoftMapleYellowPoplarHickoryBasswood An inspiration for those with a passion for fine domestic hardwoods. We offer unequaled varieties with 10 species in 4/4 thru 8/4, plus Quatersawn and Riftsawn White Oak. Some species are available in 10/4 - 12/4 - 16/4. 100% Guarantee. Our promise is simple: If, for any reason, you’re not satisfied with any of our Pike Brand ® hardwoods, call day or night and we’ll make it right! We guarantee delivery on time even with mixed loads, on grade, with consistent color, and kiln dried to perfection. THE Pike Brand ® COLLECTION OF FINE HARDWOODS P.O. Box 247, Akron, Indiana 46910 001 574 893-4511 001 574 893-7400 fax ® S ince 1904 LUMBER COMPANY , INC.

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