NHTOA News

For additional news check out the NHTOA Facebook page

CHESTERFIELD, N.H. — Scott Piper, president of Northeast Mill Services Inc., and Rick Grover, with a long career as an expert mechanic for sawmills throughout New England and Europe, were both honored by the New Hampshire Timberland Industry Association (NHTOA) with this year's Outstanding Forest Industry award. The awards were presented at the NHTOA's 107th Annual Meeting, held May 19, 2018, in Chesterfield, N.H.

In Scott's career he has been involved in the new construction of more than 50 sawmills and 400 sawmill improvement projects. His business rode the wave of vast expansion of the grade lumber industry of the 1980s, ‘90s and early 2000s, where automation in lumber handling and optimization (computer based scanning and data collection) were transforming the 200 year-old labor-dependent industry into a technological marvel of efficiency.

Born in Bangor, Me., Rick discovered a love of machines and how they work at a young age. What he enjoys most, he says, is looking at a machine, watching it run, looking and listening for problems, and solving them. “You’ve got to love them,” he says, “love them like the machines are your children. You can feel when they’re running right, you can hear it when the blade is fresh and the carriage is lined up right.”

 

He’s largely self-taught, though he says he was “fortunate that I came up at the tail-end of when the old guys were still around. I learned a lot from them. They had a real knack and a common-sense way of doing things. They were practical, and they knew machines. It was a great education for me.”

Rick got started installing equipment in a bakery, but by the mid-1970s he had moved into sawmills. He has installed equipment in sawmills all over New England, and he also did some installations in European mills. He connected with Scott Piper in the late 1990s and has worked with him ever since. Rick also has had a long relationship with Allard Lumber in Brattleboro, Vt., helping CEO Cliff Allard devise new, more efficient, more productive ways of moving wood through the mill.

 

“A good machine will save time, money, and work, and a good machine will give you a good product in the end,” he says. “Good machines have made this industry what it is – good machines and good people. It’s a partnership, and that’s the way I feel when I’m working on a machine and trying to figure something out. A partner.”  

A slower pace seems to suit Scott for now. Though he is admittedly winding down a bit in his 70s and stopping a bit more to smell the roses or maybe “go up to camp,” he is still a busy man. “I don’t think I’ll ever really retire,” he says. “I enjoy solving problems and I enjoy the people in this industry. I believe in the people in the lumber businesses and I like working with them.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHESTERFIELD, N.H. — Karen Bennett, New Hampshire’s State Extension Forester and a longtime expert source of practical information for timberland owners, was honored today for her long service to the New Hampshire Timberland Owners Association (NHTOA) with the NHTOA’s Kendall Norcott Award.

The award, named for the NHTOA’s first executive director and forester Kendall Norcott, is the NHTOA’s most prestigious award and recognizes outstanding achievement in forestry and timberland management.

Jasen Stock, executive director of the NHTOA,  says Karen’s career experience translates into a dependable, reliable, well-informed resource that has helped the state’s landowners for many years. “The Kendall Norcott Award honors exceptional service to our organization and our members,” says Jasen, “and Karen is the perfect person to honor this way. Her help and support have been a mainstay of not just the NHTOA but also for New Hampshire’s timberland owners. She’s invaluable.”

Karen Bennett grew up in Danvers, Mass., outside of Boston, in an outdoorsy family that she describes as “practical.” Her father was a local scoutmaster for the Boy Scouts — Karen has four brothers and three sisters — and she often tagged along on Scout trips to the White Mountains. By the time she was 12 years old, she had her patch for hiking all of the 4,000-footers in New Hampshire. She got into forestry as a kind of planned accident. “When you were 16 or 17, you were supposed to pick a major. I picked forestry — it was either that or oceanography, which I didn’t know anything about either.” But she fell in love with forestry, she says. “I love learning new things, and I learned so much about the forest that I had been hiking in all those years, how to identify trees and kinds of wood. It was very practical knowledge, which set well with my personality.”

Karen says she continues to learn from the forest. “I’m still learning how to use the natural environment well, to understand how things work and how to use this resource responsibly. It’s been meaningful work,” she concludes. “Really, there’s no better thing in your life than family and meaningful work.”

CHESTERFIELD, N.H. — David Rondeau, based in Orford, N.H., is the 2018 Outstanding Logger, as awarded by the New Hampshire Timberland Owners Association (NHTOA). The award was presented to Mr. Rondeau at the NHTOA’s 107th Annual Meeting at the Chesterfield Central School in Chesterfield.

Modest to a fault, David says, “I just try to do the best I can.”

“Loggers like David are the backbone of New England timber harvesting,” says NHTOA executive director Jasen Stock. “He’s hard-working, dedicated to doing what’s right for the forest as well as for his clients, and his word is his bond. This is what New Hampshire is truly all about – men like David Rondeau.”

A graduate in forestry of Paul Smiths College in upstate New York, David, who grew up in Connecticut, has spent his entire career in the Upper Valley region, working at various times for Fred Weld in Cornish and John O’Brien in Orford. He’s been an independent logger for 30 years, and at this point in his career David finds himself returning to cut trees on timber sales that he cut 20 years ago. There’s a satisfaction, he says, “in seeing healthy re-generation in a woodlot I worked on years ago,” adding “I like a good hardwood job. They come out cleaner. But I like working on Pine, too. Well, when you get down to it, I like any job with a lot of sawlogs.”

He says that at 61 years old, “I suppose I should be thinking about retirement. But I want to work another 10 years, at least. I like what I do, being in the woods and working. It’s quiet, you see wildlife, you see things other people can only imagine seeing. It’s a great job, and until I can’t do it anymore, I’m going to keep doing it.”

 

Note for your late spring/early summer calendar: The months of May and June will include several NHTOA Landowner Classes of special interest to woodlot owners interested in learning how to best manage their woodlands for improved growth and disease and infestation prevention. The upcoming schedule also includes two classes that are part of the 100th anniversary celebration of White Mountain National Forest. 

 

Detailed information about each class is available on the NHTOA website, where you can also register for each class. 

 

Upcoming classes include:

What's Wrong with My Tree?

Are you noticing dead or declining trees in your forest woodlot or neighborhood?  Are you seeing tree issues that you can't identify or have never seen before?  Join Forest Health specialists for an informative evening of discussion on tree health and common tree infections/infestations. Spring is an exceptional time of year to see evidence of what's ailing your tree. Lectures will include descriptions of common health offenders, and what preventative measures might be appropriate for your woodlot. NOTE: This is an evening class, and it will be held twice. The May 8 class will focus on fungus and environmental stressors on trees and forests. The May 15 class will concentrate on insect infestations that impact forest trees. 

WhenMay 8 and May 15, 2018, 7:30 - 9:30 p.m. 

Where: Conservation Center, 54 Portsmouth St., Concord, N.H. 

Registration fee: NHTOA member, $15; non-member, $30

 

Herbicides 101

Infestations from invasive plants continue to be a serious problem for landowners and natural resource managers. Join Forest Industry specialists for an informative workshop about effective techniques for combating invasive vegetation. This workshop will discuss how different herbicides impact target plants, which types of herbicides are appropriate for certain species and scenarios, and time frames for particular applications.  

When: May 12, 2018, 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Where: Claremont Community Center, 152 South Street, Claremont, N.H.

Registration fee: NHTOA members, $15; non-members, $30

 

White Mountain Tour: Bartlett Experimental Forest, A Forestry Tour in Applied Silviculture

Join forest industry specialists for an informative tour about how forest silvicultural objectives are met. This tour will observe three different timber sales that were made over varying time scales. At the conclusion of the tour, feel free to join WMNF and NHTOA staff for a guided hike in the Bartlett Experimental Forest.

Timber Sale 1: Observe a timber sale before active management has been initiated - Hear how objectives were formulated and what silvicultural actions have been prescribed to meet the objectives.

Timber Sale 2: Observe an active timber harvest - The focus is on how management prescriptions are being implemented, the equipment involved in timber harvesting, and how best-management practices apply in the woods.

Timber Sale 3: Observe a timber sale post-harvest - Discussion focuses on the current status of a harvested site (forest health, wildlife habitat), how much volume was removed, forest regeneration, and what kind of forest products came out of the timber sale.

When: June 9, 2018, 8:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Where: Bartlett Experimental Forest Lab, Pine Street, Bartlett, N.H.

Registration fee: Free

 

White Mountain Tour: North Woodstock, A Forestry Tour in Applied Silviculture

Join forest industry specialists for an informative tour about how forest silvicultural objectives are met. This tour will observe three different timber sales that were made over varying time scales. At the conclusion of the tour, feel free to join WMNF and NHTOA staff for a guided hike in the White Mountain National Forest.

Timber Sale 1: Observe a timber sale before active management has been initiated - Hear how objectives were formulated and what silvicultural actions have been prescribed to meet the objectives.

Timber Sale 2: Observe an active timber harvest - The focus is on how management prescriptions are being implemented, the equipment involved in timber harvesting, and how best-management practices apply in the woods.

Timber Sale 3: Observe a timber sale post-harvest - Discussion focuses on the current status of a harvested site (forest health, wildlife habitat), how much volume was removed, forest regeneration, and what kind of forest products came out of the timber sale.

When: June 16, 2018, 8:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Where: 200 Kancamagus Highway, North Woodstock, N.H.

Registration fee: Free

 

Where the Wild Things Are: Promoting Wildlife Through Silvicultural Applications

Consideration for wildlife habitat continues to be an important component of quality forest management.  Join forest industry professionals for a field day of discussions and demonstrations on habitat management in New Hampshire's North Country.  Discussions will focus on how specific silvicultural applications can create optimum habitat conditions for a variety of wildlife species, while simultaneously generating forest products for forest industries and income for landowners. 

When: July 14, 2018, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Where: Johns River Basin, Jefferson, N.H.

Registration fee: NHTOA members, $15; non-members, $30