November 25, 2020

Texas Forestry Association Announces Dr. Paula Griffin as PLT Leadership In Education Award Winner


SFASU Associate Professor Dr. Paula Griffin, center, receives the Texas Project Learning Tree Leadership in Education award, sponsored by Georgia-Pacific, from Dr. Alan Sowards, Dr. Cheryl Boyette, Beverly Richard, Jacey Tosh, Jordan Herrin, and John Boyette during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association presented the Project Learning Tree (PLT) Leadership in Action Award, sponsored by Georgia-Pacific to Dr. Paula Griffin during the Association’s annual convention held Oct 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

“Dr. Griffin began serving as a volunteer with Bugs, Bees, Butterflies, and Blossoms (BBBB) in Spring of 2008,” said John Boyette, co-coordinator of Texas PLT. “BBBB is a partnership program between Texas PLT and Stephen F. Austin State University Elementary Education Department to train pre-service teachers in PLT. Partnering with the SFASU Gardens and area schools, these new PLT educators provide four days of PLT activities for classroom teachers and their elementary students.”

In 2010, Dr. Griffin assisted in the development of a hybrid PLT training combining on-line training with face-to-face training during the required campus visit. During her Fall semester Dr. Griffin’s students also participate in a partnership with Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center, where they learn additional PLT activities and developed outdoor lessons that are taught to area upper elementary students.

Dr. Griffin also assisted in the development of Wild About Science (WAS), the newest PLT partnership at SFASU that focuses on how to use PLT to meet state mandates in science content and skills.

After finding that pre-service teachers that participated in PLT training and an outdoor teaching even had significant gains in content knowledge and science teaching efficacy, Dr. Griffin made the PLT PreK-8 Guide one of her required textbooks.

She has served on the Texas PLT Steering Committee since 2014, bringing valuable academic experience and knowledge to our efforts. She also served on the Texas Forestry Literacy Plan Committee and she has received funding through SFASU Faculty Research Grants to conduct research on the impact of PLT contributing to the growing wealth of knowledge on the importance of environmental education in teaching. 

In March of 2018 she presented her experience and research at the twelfth Biennial Conference on University Education in Natural Resources. This presentation was then published in the July 2019 Journal of Forestry. She continues to share her knowledge and passion for PLT and teaching outdoors through her connections with professional educator organizations. She will be presenting on Wild About Science, on October 24th in Norfolk Virginia, at the Kappa Delta Pi International Convocation.

“Dr. Griffin is a true visionary with a passion for environmental education,” said Boyette “She has proven her commitment to PLT through her innovative use of the curriculum to train pre-service teachers, while simultaneously impacting area school children.”

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Presents Excellence in Wood Design Award To Fredonia Brewery and Texas Farm Credit

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association (TFA) presented the annual Excellence in Wood Design Awards to Fredonia Brewery in Nacogdoches and Texas Farm Credit in Brenham during the organization’s annual conference held Oct. 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

The Excellence in Wood Design award has been presented for fifty-two years as a positive outreach program for TFA. The main criteria for the nominations include the projects must be located in Texas and they must have been completed within the past five years. This year, the award was presented in two categories: Special Project and Commercial.

“The Fredonia Brewery received the special project nomination for its creative use of existing wooden structures,” said Rob Hughes, TFA Executive Director. “Though the main building which houses the brewery is metal, it was situated in the middle of the property to maximize the use of the existing wooden garden building, pergola and arbor design that were part of the Dragon Fly Nursery. The garden building is made of pine lumber and shiplap siding. The pergola and arbor are made of pine lumber as well and stained dark in color.”

SPECIAL PROJECT AWARD PHOTO:
Paul Murray and Vince Beard receive the award for Excellence in Wood Design, Special Project, from members of the TFA Marketing Committee: John Boyette, Robert Christ, David Macher, Ed Dougal and Jeff Zwolinski during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

Inside, the bar surround is timber framed local pine built by Red Suspenders and uses no nails or screws in its construction. The huge, heavy pine beam framing, which displays the beauty of the bar is held together by mortise & tenon construction. The bar top is made from a few very large pieces of local black walnut harvested after a massive lighting strike hit the tree.

Vince Beard, Paul Murray and some of Paul’s Coast Guard friends, and Chris and Jacob Philbrook, built thirty tables and sixty benches for seating both inside and out. These benches and tables were all constructed of pressure-treated loblolly pine from 4”x4”s, 2”x4”s and 2”x6”s, cut into pieces utilizing different types of rabbet joinery. The wood for the tables and benches was all obtained from Cal-Tex Lumber Company.

Texas Farm Credit, located in Brenham, Texas, received the award for the Commercial category. The structure was completed in July 2019 and serves as a regional administrative location for the rural lending cooperative while housing home mortgage and administrative personnel, in addition to agricultural lending officers.

COMMERCIAL AWARD PHOTO:
John Carpenter with Texas Farm Credit and architects Kelsie Srnensky and Eric Opperman, front row, receive the award for Excellence in Wood Design, Special Project, from , from members of the TFA Marketing Committee: John Boyette, Robert Christ, David Macher, Ed Dougal and Jeff Zwolinski, during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

“Fine wood products, provided by Elder Hardwoods, play a dominate role throughout the design of the building,” said Hughes. “The aesthetic goal of the project was to invoke the nostalgia of a 1900s farmhouse, pieced together to show growth over generations.”

On the exterior, rough cypress is used for board and batten cladding to emphasize the “barn” which protrudes from the “house.” On the interior, they showcase several diverse species such as cypress, walnut, pecan, and a mixed species blend on the conference room ceiling and coat nook. Additional main sources of wood used throughout include the building structure, interior doors, and trim.

The project architect is Singleton Zimmer Haliburton Architecture, and Collier Construction built the facility. The project displays a welcoming rough cypress barn door feature on the outside and a finely crafted pecan and walnut accounts desk inside. It has stained board and batten siding, exposed tongue and groove porch roof decks with exposed rafters, and 14”x16” solid cypress timber silo door jambs and header. The sheer size and girth of the post and beam convey a sense of solidarity, meant to withstand the test of time. Solid wood doors, louvers, trellis, live edge mantle and window seat, coat nook, and the multi-species conference room ceiling continue to spread their beauty throughout. Finally, handcrafted hardwood tables complete the building interior.

“The project presents wood as a forefront material, used to accentuate different areas of the design to give each space its own character,” said Hughes. “The use of various species brings diversity in materials yet allows cohesion when the project is viewed as a whole. The inherent warmth the wood brings about makes this project feel like home and creates a space worth coming to work in every day.”

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Announces Rep. Ernest Bailes as 2019 Legislator of the Year

Rep. Ernest Bailes receives the Legislator of the Year award from David Alders during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association (TFA) presented Rep. Ernest Bailes with the 2019 Legislator of the Year award during the Association’s annual convention held Oct 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

“With a background in ranching and logging, Rep. Bailes has a deep connection to the land and knows that in order to thrive, wise conservation and management of Texas’ limited natural resources is necessary,” said TFA Executive Director, Rob Hughes. “His diverse background has led him to help drive and develop some of the largest conservative policies in Texas.

“Rep. Bailes showed his strong support the Forest Sector when he contacted TFA about an issue negatively affecting loggers,” said Hughes. “After some discussion and planning, the Log Loader Bill was filed on behalf of the TFA and the Texas Logging Council.”

This law allows logging contractors to transport “equipment used to load timber” under the current Annual Timber Permit instead of purchasing an additional $4,000 Envelope Permit. After successfully getting a unanimous vote from the House Transportation committee, the bill was trapped. With much effort and tenacity and partnering with Senator Nichols who strategically attached the language to another bill, it finally passed and was signed by Governor Abbott with no opposition. 

Rep. Bailes was also a co-author on the Forestry Fairness Act filed by Rep. Trent Ashby and Sen. Nichols which prohibits Forest Landowners from having property carved out of their Timber Valuation due to pipelines and other eminent domain circumstances.

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Presents Outstanding Logger Award To Tommy Cunningham Logging

TFA Logging Council Chair Tim Rodrigues, front row in red shirt, presents Tommy Cunningham with the Outstanding Logger of the Year award during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas. Surrounding them are Cunningham’s son Jimmy Loftin, daughter Heather Wallet, wife Ouida. Back row: Phil Ferguson, Dave Duren with TFA Logging Council, Robert Wilson, and Shane Bergman with Rayonier.

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association (TFA) presented Tommy Cunningham Logging with the Texas Logging Council Outstanding Logger of the Year award during the organization’s annual conference held Oct. 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

Tommy Cunningham is the owner of Cunningham Wood Products located in Spurger, TX. It began in 1980 when Tommy, in middle school, asked his father, John Thomas Cunningham, to let him work full time on his logging job.

Cunningham Wood Products has grown in size and influence and now employs three business clerks, one graduate forester, sixteen loggers (eleven of which are Texas Pro Loggers), eleven drivers, and three mechanics all covered by workers compensation and general liability. Employees are offered health and life insurance with supplemental coverage.

“When Tommy speaks of his employees, he lovingly refers to them as ‘my men.’ He views employing thirty people as making provision for thirty or more families,” said Rob Hughes, TFA Executive Director. “The relationship between CWP and the local business community is unprecedented and to list just a few examples just doesn’t seem adequate. They provide all the fuel to the Spurger VFD; sponsor multi county youth programs, such as baseball, basketball, soccer, and 4H other programs; the Zavalla Food Pantry; as well as, various other local churches and ministries.”

CWP does various types of harvesting including plantation thinning, single-tree selection, and clearcutting. Forest management plans are executed accurately and in a timely manner. The company also adheres to sustainable forest management by following Texas Best Management Practices for long-term health and productivity of the land. Tommy was nominated for this award by Robert Wilson with FRC, and Shane Bergman with Rayonier.

Cunningham Wood Products is truly a family run operation whereby his wife, Ouida serves as the Office Manager, his mom, Betty Cunningham and daughter, Heather Wallet conduct office clerical duties. Son Jimmy Loftin, brother Marion Cunningham, and nephew Johnny Cunningham work on woods crews, and Uncle Robert Glaze serves as one of the shop mechanics. In addition to Cunningham Wood Products, he fulfills his true passion as Pastor of End Time Full Gospel Church in Jasper, Texas. Tommy’s family and friends will tell you his life is a sermon of perseverance and a testimony of God’s love.

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Announces J. Andrew And Susan Rice As 2019 Outstanding Tree Farmers Of The Year

J. Rice receives the Outstanding Tree Farm of the Year Award from Jason Ellis, Texas Tree Farm Chair, during the association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association (TFA) announced J. Andrew and Susan Rice as the 2019 Outstanding Tree Farm of the Year during the organization’s annual conference held Oct. 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

“J. Rice has an evident love of the land and values it’s rich history,” said Rob Hughes, TFA Executive Director. “J. took everything he learned from his father and grandfather and has applied it to his property to protect soil erosion and sustainability.”

The Rice’s Certified Tree Farm was nominated by their Consulting Forester, Stephen Dantzler. Their Tree Farm consists of  114 acres in Liberty County near Dayton. Though the Tree Farm is somewhat new in the certification program, it has been under written management since 1994. The Tree Farm is a multiple use-sustained yield timber and wildlife management property for producing timber income and family recreation. A portion of the land has a history beginning with J.’s great grandfather who moved to East Texas from Missouri in 1880.

“J. has created a biological diverse ecosystem by planting cypress along water courses and creating a newly planted mixed hardwood and pine forest,” said Hughes. “A more mature stand is two-thirds pine plantation and one-third natural mixed hardwood/pine.”

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Presents John Boyette With 2019 Make A Difference Award

John Boyette receives the Make a Difference award from Michael Easley during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association (TFA) presented John Boyette, forester with the Texas A&M Forest Service, with the 2019 Make A Difference award during the organization’s annual conference held Oct. 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

‘The award was started several years ago, and it is not one that is given every year,” said Jason Ellis, Chair of TFA’s Tree Farm Committee. “This year, however, we have a person who has been with us a long time and has accomplished so much for not only Tree Farm certification, but for the landowners he has served.”

Since 1992, Boyette has certified 26 new tree farms, decertified 28 tree farms, and recertified 125 tree farms. In addition, he has served as Area Chair for many years thus ensuring the work of the Tree Farm Committee and the requirements of the American Tree Farm System are carried out.  

Boyette has received many Tree Farm inspector awards over the years, however, he has one significant legacy.

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Announces John and Dr. Cheryl Boyette as PLT Outreach and Education Award Recipients


John, left, and Dr. Cheryl Boyette, right, receive the Texas Project Learning Tree Forestry Outreach and Education award from Misty Bowie, center, during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association (TFA) presented the Project Learning Tree (PLT) Forestry Outreach and Education Award to husband and wife duo John and Dr. Cheryl Boyette during the Association’s annual convention held Oct 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

“This year’s Outreach in Education Award winners have impressive resumes on their own, but when they work together, like Fred and Ginger, the synchronization is magical,” said Rob Hughes, Executive Director of Texas Forestry Association.

John has reached audiences of all ages through his involvement in programs such as county Forest Awareness Tours, Nature Realized, Wild About Science, Nacogdoches Naturally, Keep Nacogdoches Beautiful, and Bugs, Bees, Butterflies, and Blossoms. Also, as the co-coordinator of Texas Project Learning Tree, he conducts numerous workshops to provide educators with curriculum that emphasizes the benefits of sustainable forest management.

As a consultant specializing in curriculum and program evaluation, Dr. Cheryl Boyette has developed and improved environmental education programs for organizations such as Stephen F. Austin State University, Keep America Beautiful, and Project Learning Tree, as well as several Independent Schools Districts in East Texas. She has also been gracious in providing years of pro bono work for TFA’s Teacher Conservation Institute and Texas Project Learning Tree.

“There has never been a problem that Cheryl couldn’t solve, and there has never been a hammer that John couldn’t swing. Cheryl navigates, John drives. Cheryl envisions, John assembles. Together they have spent the past two decades tag teaming at conferences, workshops, and outreach events,” said Hughes. “Their combined passion for forestry education has positively impacted countless students, teachers, landowners, and other citizens. We cannot thank John Boyette and Dr. Cheryl Boyette enough for their combined contribution to forestry education in Texas.”

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Announces Virtually Wild! Texas as Forestry Innovation Award Recipient

Nancy C. Brown, Public Outreach Specialist Southwest Region, National Wildlife Refuge System U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; and, John Warner, Urban District Forester, Texas A&M Forest Service receive the Forestry Innovation Award during Texas Forestry Association’s annual convention held October 16-18, 2019 held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

LUFKIN, TEXASTexas Forestry Association (TFA) presented the 2019 Forestry Innovation Award to Virtually Wild! Texas during the Association’s annual convention held Oct. 16-18, 2019, at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas.

“Based out of Houston, Texas, Virtually Wild! Texas highlights the important work done by a diversity of partners, including federal, state, city and non-profit partners,” said Rob Hughes, Executive Director of Texas Forestry Association. “Educational materials cover nature-related topics, ranging from monarch migration to reptile adaptations to forest management.”

Virtually Wild! Texas is a nature program designed for schools, hospitals and other institutions that serve students and young people with limited access to nature’s natural resources. The goal of the virtual field trips is to provide TEKS correlated and site-based nature-related activities that educators access from the classroom or other indoor settings. The virtual experience brings to life wildlife stories from the Houston region. Approximately 7,000 students from more than 30 classrooms, home schools, and medical facilities across the state of Texas have been reached since the program’s inception in 2016. 

“TFA is proud to present this award to Virtually Wild! Texas for the innovative way they used technology to take nature to children, some of whom might not otherwise or seldom experience it,” Hughes said. 

ABOUT:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Announces Marty Harris as Ed Wagoner Leadership Award Recipient


Marty Harris accepts the Ed Wagoner Leadership Award from TFA President Mike Bird during the annual convention for the Texas Forestry Association held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas on Oct. 16-18, 2019.

LUFKIN, TEXAS – Texas Forestry Association has named Marty Harris as the recipient for the Ed Wagoner Leadership Award at the Association’s annual convention held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas on October 16-18, 2019.

“I am pleased to present this award to Marty. Over the years he has provided so much in the way of leadership, time, and personal attention to the success of Texas Forestry Association,” said Mike Bird, TFA President. “He is devoted to the committees he serves as well as to the future of Texas Forestry Association.”

Harris currently serves on the Administrative Committee, the TFA Executive Committee, as well as being the chair of the Texas Accredited Forester Council.

“Marty has also served on the planning team for TFA Annual Meetings for many years, and still does, and with his knowledge of current issues, Marty has brought in several professional speakers for these events,” said Bird.

Harris joined TFA in 1993, and although he is considered to be one of the “younger” generation of members, his accomplishments in the forest industry and his continued service to Texas Forestry Association does not go unrecognized. He was elected Vice President of TFA on October 16, 2019.

Harris Photo:

Marty Harris accepts the Ed Wagoner Leadership Award from TFA President Mike Bird during the annual convention for the Texas Forestry Association held at The Fredonia Hotel in Nacogdoches, Texas on Oct. 16-18, 2019.

About:

Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for over 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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Texas Forestry Association Announces Jeff Rogers As Ed Wagoner Leadership Award Recipient

LUFKIN, TEXAS – Texas Forestry Association has named Jeff Rogers as the recipient for the Ed Wagoner Leadership Award at the Association’s annual convention held at Moody Gardens in Galveston, Texas on October 16-18, 2018.

“I am pleased to present this award to a TFA member who provided so much in the way of leadership, time, and personal attention to the success of many TFA programs,” said Charley Colvin, TFA President. “Jeff Rogers has been a member for only a few years, but in his own words, he jumped in feet first and has been of great service ever since.”

Rogers manages many responsibilities in the day-to-day operation of the fourth-generation family sawmill. He currently serves on the Administration Committee and Membership Subcommittee, the TFA Board of Directors, the Timber Productivity Tax Committee, the Executive Committee, the Timber Industry Roundtable, and is a Forestry PAC trustee.

“He knows the importance of building respectful relationships and doesn’t mind questioning the logic behind decisions,” Colvin said. “This guy is never shy, but tactful in offering his opinions. And, most importantly, he never suggests something new without volunteering himself first.”

Jeff’s father, Vince Rogers, is newly elected to serve on the TFA Board of Directors. Melinda, Rogers’ wife, will serve on the Texas Forestry Museum board and has organized several things for TFA, including the highly acclaimed spouses tour during the annual conference.

The Rogers are life members and live in the Beaumont with their three children.

ROGERS PHOTO:

Jeff Rogers, center, accepts the Ed Wagoner Leadership Award during the annual convention for the Texas Forestry Association held at Moody Gardens in Galveston, Texas on Oct. 16-18, 2018.  Presenting the award is TFA President Charley Colvin and Executive Director Rob Hughes.

ABOUT:
Texas Forestry Association, the voice for forestry for 100 years, promotes an economic, social and political climate that will advance forestry in Texas through education, political action and public relations, as well as serving the broad needs of the forest resource of landowners, producers and consumers, and to enhance and perpetuate the Texas forest resource.

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