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AFA Newsroom Archive [V8N18] [9-15-13]
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AFA Newsroom V8 No. 18, September 15, 2013

AFA Annual Meeting Featured Governor Robert Bentley and Outstanding CEO Roundtable

The 2013 Alabama Forestry Association Annual Meeting on Sept. 8-10, 2013 was an outstanding success by just about any measure. Certainly, with almost 400 attendees, it was the largest participation for the event in years. It didn't hurt that Gov. Robert Bentley spent a lot of time with our members, first hosting the Chairman's Club Dinner on Sunday night, then serving as moderator on Monday, Sept. 9 for the first of two panel discussions by some of the major CEOs of the forest products industry!

Taking part in the panel discussions were, Paul Boynton, CEO of Rayonier; Travis Bryant, CEO of Coastal Forest Products Company; Mike Case, CEO of Westervelt Company; Dan Fulton, Executive Vice Chair of Weyerhaeuser; Rick Holley, CEO of Plum Creek; Michael Kelly, CEO of Forest Investment Associates; and Jonathan Martin, Chairman and CEO of RoyOMartin. 

For the panel discussions, each of the CEOs spoke for 15-minutes about their company and about the general state of the US and forest economy. Following the presentations of Boynton, Fulton and Kelly, Governor Bentley served the role of moderator and asked each a series of questions at the Monday session. Tuesday, Alabama Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield, followed the same format at the second session on Sept. 10 with CEOs Bryant, Case, Holley and Martin.    

Participation at all of the program events, especially the CEO panel discussions Monday and Tuesday, was very good. That includes this year's Sunburn Classic which had 60 players (15 teams). The winning team of Ben Stimpson, Virginia Macpherson, Tony Sheffield and Hudson Williams represented Scotch Plywood and won with a score of 59.1.
Event sponsors were Buchanan Timber & Forestry, The Westervelt Company, Jack Ingram Motors of Montgomery and Gulf Coast Truck & Equipment Co. Inc. of Mobile. Nobody won the two fabulous hole-in-one prizes, a 2013 Mac Truck (Gulf Coast Truck) and a 2013 Nissan Titan 4X4 (Jack Ingram). One player came within 2 feet of winning the Mac truck. Maybe next year!  
Photo: Pictured above, Gov. Robert Bentley (left) shakes hands with Weyerhaeuser Vice Chair Dan Fulton, while Rayonier CEO Paul Boynton (second from right) shakes hands with Forest Investment Associates CEO Michael Kelly. The three CEOs were part of a panel discussion moderated by Gov. Bentley on Sept. 9.  

Chad Fincher Needs Our Help in His Bid for the 1st District Seat in the U.S. Congress   

By Tom Saunders

You are probably going to get several communications from AFA in the next few days regarding supporting Chad Fincher and if we wear you out, I apologize.  However, ForestPAC has made its endorsement of Chad in the Alabama 1st Congressional District for the U.S. House of Representatives and we want to make sure that we are utilizing every opportunity to help Chad obtain the necessary resources to be competitive in this race.

Chad has been very helpful to AFA and the timber industry during his tenure in the Alabama House of Representatives.  As Chairman of the House Ag & Forestry Committee, he has been instrumental in helping us with our legislation over the last few years, including the bills that limit the liability for landowners that lease their land for hunting and fishing to third parties, codifying common law rulings regarding trespass, creating the bridge bond issue and precluding the discriminatory treatment of forest certification systems in green building standards.

Read more

International Paper to Permanently Close Courtland, Alabama Mill 

MEMPHIS, Tenn., Sept. 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- International Paper (NYSE: IP) today announced plans to permanently close its Courtland, Ala. Mill, a facility that is part of the company's Printing and Communications Papers Business.  The mill will shut down in stages with a full closure expected to be complete by the end of the first quarter of 2014.  This mill closure will reduce IP's North American uncoated and coated freesheet paper production capacity by 950,000 tons, of which 765,000 is uncoated freesheet.

"These decisions are especially difficult because of the impact to long-serving and hard-working employees, their families and the surrounding communities," said International Paper Chairman and CEO, John Faraci. "This decision to permanently close capacity is primarily being driven by demand decline for uncoated freesheet paper products in the United States."

Read IP Release...

Governor Bentley Issues Statement on Closure of IP Courtland Mill

By Governor Robert Bentley

"The people who work for International Paper in Courtland remain on my mind, and I want to do whatever I can on the state level to help.  This morning, I directed Greg Canfield, Secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce, to contact company officials at Courtland’s International Paper plant.  Canfield is scheduled to meet Friday with plant officials to discuss and explore any possible options that could help prevent the loss of jobs.  We may not be able to save those jobs.  But we’ll do our best to try to keep them..."

Read full statement

Jackson Named Assistant State Forester, Cartwright New Director of Forest Operations Division

State Forester Linda S. Casey has announced the recent appointment of Dan Jackson as Assistant State Forester by the Alabama Forestry Commission (AFC). This appointment was approved by the Governor, effective September 1. Jackson has 25 years of service with the Commission and has served at virtually every level of the agency from county forester to division director.

“Dan’s broad range of experience will be a valuable asset as he takes on this new leadership role, and I look forward to his continued contributions to the AFC,” said Casey.

Additionally, Walter Cartwright has accepted the position of Director of the Forest Operations Division. Cartwright has worked a total of 25 years for  the State of Alabama, the last 10 years with the Forestry Commission serving as Assistant Forest Management Director and most recently as Administrative Division Director. Photos: Dan Jackson (left), Walter Cartwright.

USFWS Proposes Threatened Status and Critical Habitat for the Georgia Rockcress

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposes to list the Georgia rockcress as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Only found in Georgia and Alabama, the granite outcrop plant has been a candidate for listing as a Threatened species since 2000.

At the same time, the Service also is proposing to designate about 786 acres of river bluff habitat as the plant’s critical habitat. The proposed critical habitat areas in Georgia include lands in Gordon, Floyd, Harris, Muscogee, Chattahoochee, and Clay Counties.
In Alabama, the proposed critical habitat designation includes areas in Bibb, Dallas, Elmore, Monroe, Russell, Sumter and Wilcox Counties.

Read full release 

State Representative Richard Laird Retires After 35 Years in Alabama House 

Veteran legislator Representative Richard J. Laird, (I-Roanoke) will not seek re-election to the Alabama House. Laird told the Alabama Political Reporter he decided that after 36 years in the legislature, it was time to go.

Laird was first elected when Fob James won the governorship the first time in 1978. He served through the administrations of Governors James (2), Wallace, Hunt (almost 2), Folsom, Siegelman, Riley (2) and Bentley. Richard was part of a fairly large group of so-called "conservative Democrats" in the state Legislature back when receiving the Democratic nomination was tantamount to being elected. With the Republican sweep of 2010, a number of "conservative Democrats" switched to the Republican Party. The result being, there are very few lawmakers who carry that designation today. For his part, Richard had converted his party designation to Independent (I).    
Laird, who will turn 75 years old at the end of this term said, “You know, your body and your age ought to talk to you and you ought to listen I'm listening.”


Sawmill Days in Stockton Alabama, fun for the Whole Family and a bit of Forest History too

The Stockton Heritage Association invites you to join them on Saturday, November 2, for the first annual “Stockton Sawmill Days” event. Held on the beautiful wooded grounds of Baldwin County’s Bicentennial Park in Stockton, AL, just 1.5 miles off I-65, this event celebrates the Stockton community’s history and heritage as home to the first sawmill in the State of Alabama.

The event will include displays and demonstrations of old logging equipment, portable sawmills and a host of other types of forestry equipment and activities.
For the rest of the story, click here.
To review a flyer of the event and the planned activities, click here.

Forestry Invasive Plants Identification and Control Seminar Set for October 24

If you want to know all there is to know about invasive plants, then you need to sign up  for the Forestry Invasive Plants Identification and Control event set for October 24, 2013 at the USDA Agriculture Service Center in Andalusia, Ala.


Dr. Christy Challenges Accuracy of Global Warming Models

Can you rely on the weather forecast? Maybe not, at least when it comes to global warming predictions over short time periods.

That’s the upshot of a new study in the journal Nature Climate Change that compared 117 climate predictions made in the 1990's to the actual amount of warming. Out of 117 predictions, the study’s author told, three were roughly accurate and 114 overestimated the amount of warming. On average, the predictions forecasted two times more global warming than actually occurred.

Some scientists say the study shows that climate modelers need to go back to the drawing board.

"It's a real problem ... it shows that there really is something that needs to be fixed in the climate models," climate scientist John Christy, a professor at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, told 

EXPAND YOUR BASE: Turn the New Generation of Forest Owners into Your Clients

We know that land ownership is changing. What does that mean for your business? The American Forest Foundation (AFF) has developed a four-hour workshop specifically to help foresters communicate better with landowners. Expand Your Base! AFF derives much of its information from the US Forest Service’s National Woodland Owner Survey (NWOS) and subsequent research and information conducted by the Sustaining Family Forests Initiative.


ALC Annual Meeting Set for October 12 in Prattville

By Ray Clifton

The 2013 Alabama Loggers Council Annual Meeting is just a few weeks away. Our meeting will be held on Saturday, October 12, from 8:00 a.m -2:00 p.m. at “The Marriot Legends at Capital Hill” in Prattville.
Early registration is just $75 (which includes the lunch banquet). Pre-register now online at or by telephone at 334-481-2135 and save 25% (registration is $100 at the door).
Read more Logger Notes...

Dates Set for 2013 Regional Events & Forestry Field Days Sponsored by ANRC and Tree Farm

Everyone is invited to the 2013 Regional Events and Forestry Field Days sponsored by the Alabama Natural Resources Council and the Alabama State Tree Farm Committee and scheduled on three separate days in October. These events will show attendees how to manage their forests for multiple use, introduce them to leaders of Alabama's natural resources agencies, provide experts who will speak on forest resource management and allow them to take a tour on a Helene Mosley Memorial TREASURE Forest! Read event flyer....

Log a Load Getting Ready to Blast Away at Capital District Sporting Clays Event Sept. 19

 If you like the shooting sports, it's time to clean your shotgun and get ready for the Capital District Annual Sporting Clays event at the Lower Wetumpka Shotgun Sports Club in Montgomery on September 19. Click here for event flyer.

Other events in 2013 include: 
>> September 20: The Mountain District will hold a golf tournament at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Silver Lakes. The event will be 4-person scramble. Click here for flyer/registraton form.
>> September 28: The Forestry Club at Auburn University will hold its annual Archery Shoot in Waverly Alabama. Click here for flyer.
>> October 23: The Longleaf District will hold its annual golf tournament at the Brewton Country Club. Click here for Richard's letter to potential supporters, and click here for event registration form
>> November 8: The Warrior District will hold its 10th Annual Charlie Hughen Memorial Sporting Clay and Skeet Shoot at the Westervelt Lodge in Aliceville. Click here for flyer.
>> November 9. The Wiregrass District will hold the second annual Wiregrass Dove Hunt in Henry County at Shorterville. We will attach the flyer for this event as soon as it has been completed. 

PLM Initial Training Classes set for Oct. 8 and 15 at Haleyville and Nov. 12 and 19 in Andalusia

The Alabama Professional Logging Manager’s initial training classes are scheduled for Haleyville on October 8th and 15th and again in Andalusia on November 12th and 19th. This program is intended for individuals who need to obtain their first PLM card and that have not previously attended the initial training. It does not qualify for continuing education credits for those already credentialed.

Complete and return the registration form to enroll or contact Matt Vines at for more information.

 Pre-order the New Forest History Book at a 30% Discount Over Retail!

Be one of the first to own Green Gold, the new forest history book written by Dr. Jim Fickle, and enjoy a 30% discount. Download the attached flyer/pre-order form and you can receive your copy hot off the press!
The book's publisher, the University of Alabama Press, says the book will be printed and ready for distribution early next year under the title: 
Green Gold: Alabama's Forests and Forest Industries.    

If you are interested in buying advance copies of the book the publisher is offering a 30% discount for buying the book while it is still going through the process of being refined and printed. If you are interested in the comprehensive history of forestry in Alabama, go ahead and use the attached fillable PDF to place your order. 
These books would make excellent birthday or Christmas gifts for friends and family! So go ahead and sign up for an early copy NOW!

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