Annual Conference—Canaan Valley Resort 2023

We had approximately 172 people attend this year’s annual event. The two-day event was packed with both fun and business for all. A big “thank you” to Eric Carlson for agreeing to stay in his position until after the event and a big “thank you” to Kayla Springer for stepping up and helping. Lastly, “thank you” to all the volunteers that made this event successful. The highlights are as follows.

Award Winners

Aaron Street Logging Named Logger of the Year

From left to right: Michael Moran, Aaron Street, and Eric Carlson.

Aaron Street Logging was selected as the WV Logger of the Year. Aaron was presented with a new Stihl Chainsaw courtesy of Bryan Equipment, and other cash prizes by WVFA. Aaron will now compete further for recognition in competition for Appalachian Outstanding Logger and the National Outstanding Logger competition sponsored by the Forest Resources Association.

Dr. Ben Spong Receives WVFA Educator of the Year

Dr. Ben Spong, Associate Professor of Wood Science & Technology Forest Operations Extension Specialist, was presented with the Educator of the Year Award.

Dr. Spong has been instrumental in establishing new educational venues for loggers, including online modules that have helped loggers comply with the West Virginia Requirements for Continuing Education to maintain their Certified Logger Status. In 2023, over 70% of all certified loggers used the online system to obtain their required continuing education credits, saving these loggers valuable field time and significant income.

Tree Farm Scholarship

Tree Farm awardee Keegan Bennett (right).

Keegan Bennett

This year’s scholarship was awarded to Keegan Bennett. He is a student at Potomac State and is well deserving of this $1,000 scholarship.

Project Learning Tree

Linda Carnell with the WV Department of Forestry hosted a very successful PLT event with over a dozen people in attendance.

Fun For All

Timber Games & Equipment Displays

Every activity was well attended and enjoyed by all. This was a great opportunity to network with colleagues.