From the Executive Director: April 2023
March was a busy month for the Southern Pine lumber community and SFPA – and there’s a lot more still to come this year! Here are five major highlights:
AWPA Annual Meeting
During the American Wood Protection Association (AWPA)’s 119th annual meeting three-day event recently held in Tucson, Arizona, members of the wood preservation industry members gathered to network with friends and colleagues, expand their knowledge, and work collectively to support an important aspect of the wood products industry.
Founded in 1904, AWPA is an international, nonprofit, technical society that serves to provide a common forum for the exchange of technical information among industry, research, and users of treated wood.
The Treated Wood Council (TWC) held a face-to-face meeting of its Government Affairs Committee, where Jeff Miller and other committee members reviewed legislative and regulatory issues of concern to the industry. The TWC stands as a first line of defense and proactively works to ensure preservative treated wood products receive fair and balanced representation.
The annual meeting featured a robust and informative educational program – beginning with a guest presentation from Dr. J. Brent Hiskey, professor emeritus
of mining and geological engineering at the University of Arizona, who enlightened the audience about the importance and history of copper as a wood preservative.
The remainder of the program featured various research abstracts from students and industry. It’s encouraging to see the energy and enthusiasm for preservative treated wood research – in hardwoods, softwoods, solid wood, engineered wood, poles, and mass timber. Click here to review the abstracts.
AWPA holds two meetings annually. The next will take place in Denver from September 17-21, 2023, and will follow the Technical Committee Meeting format, which is where much of the standards writing, revisions, and approvals occur.
Forest Products EXPO Update
We knew moving the 2023 Forest Products Machinery & Equipment EXPO to Nashville from August 23-25 would be popular, but I can’t recall ever needing to increase exhibit space because we’re approaching capacity with more than 170 exhibitors! That’s why we’ve added another 1,600 square feet of exhibit space, which I know we’ll fill (if you’ve been on the fence, secure your space today by clicking here).
Now we need you! Registration and housing opens April 18 at sfpaexpo.com, so get ready to plan your experience!
Here are a few other highlights around EXPO to keep in mind:
- There are still some great sponsorship opportunities to get your brand out there (including a soon-to-be-announced opportunity to get your name on our nine-hole mini-golf course, axe throwing space, or cornhole setup). Check them out here.
- Early hotel space went quickly (signs of what’s expected to be a great crowd), so check out The Renaissance, which is a beautiful hotel and still has a lot of availability.
- SFPA staff is finalizing plans for a few activities that week for the board and members, so keep an eye for emails with details.
Welcome New Members!
No, we’re not just repeating ourselves. We are excited to welcome two more new members, Captis Aire and Cooper Machine, to our community as an associate member! They join the other three new members from earlier in 2023, and guess what?
We have two more new associate members to introduce to you in May! That’s seven new members in the first quarter of 2023 (for comparison, SFPA signed up 10 new associate members for all of 2022).
What does this tell me? The Southern Pine lumber community is stronger than ever (and there’s never been a better time to join SFPA!)
SFPA.org and Other Website Redevelopment
We mentioned in last month’s Lumber Shorts-Members Only about transferring our website hosting, and we’re happy to say the first step is complete with a transition of our members-only section.
What’s more exciting is that this is part of a comprehensive website redevelopment project, which we expect to launch in the third quarter of 2023. This project came out of strategic visioning and planning the SFPA board of directors conducted in 2020. Now that we’re staffed adequately, the board approved the website project earlier this, and we expect to launch in the third quarter of 2023.
The project will include consolidating SFPA.org, SouthernPine.com (and the members-only site), Southern Pine Global, Southern Pine Decks, and Raised Floor Living to create a more unified and user-friendly experience for all and to further reinforce SFPA as the resource for all things Southern Pine lumber.
I can’t wait to share this project with everyone once it launches!
International Promotion Activities
SFPA, in partnership with American Softwoods, is always somewhere in the world promote the benefits and best use of Southern Pine. March was no exception.
While I was in the Philippines last month for their international furniture show, several SFPA members accompanied other American Softwoods representatives to the DELHIWOOD show in India and the Dubai Wood Show in the UAE. Make sure to log into the members only section to check out the full trip reports or check out the summaries on the SFPA blog.
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