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Free urban wood seminar set for IWF 2018

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The urban wood movement is preparing to charge into Atlanta for an encore performance at the International Woodworking Fair.
The recently-formed Urban Wood Network is organizing a free 90-minute seminar, “The Urban Wood Movement Is Now! Come Join the Movement,” 1:00 p.m. Friday, Aug. 24 at the Georgia World Congress Center.
Wood-Mizer, a manufacturer of portable sawmills and other wood processing equipment, is the major sponsor of this unique program.
More than 130 people registered for the first urban wood utilization seminar held during IWF 2016.
This year’s session will highlight the national momentum of the urban wood movement by bringing together representatives of newly formed groups in the Southeast, Midwest and West Coast.
Each of the presenters will discuss his or her personal passions and experiences of creating products and profits by utilizing landscape and other urban forest trees felled by disease, storm damage, old age and other causes.
Each of the presentations will shed light on opportunities to repurpose urban wood otherwise destined for the chipper or landfill to make high-quality lumber, slabs, furniture, flooring and other wood products.
Attendees of this free session will learn: • The unique source local/buy local marketing appeal of urban wood products and the interesting stories they tell. • The environmental advantages of utilizing urban wood. • How to find local sources of urban wood. • How to join or start a local urban wood network. • An opportunity to get answers to your questions from our expert panel.
Panelists include: Jennifer Alger is CEO of Far West Forest Products of Sheridan, CA, a family-owned business that actively works to promote the use of local native species and underutilized logs including reclaimed urban wood. For almost two decades she has been a regional representative for Wood-Mizer portable sawmills. She has presented at several urban log and lumber utilization workshops and seminars focused on marketing, growing and operating a small sawmill business. Most recently Jennifer has formed and is the president of Urban Salvaged and Reclaimed Woods Inc., the West Coast’s first urban lumber trade network.
Dwayne Sperber, owner of Wudeward Urban Forest Products of Milwaukee, WI, has worked tirelessly to build awareness and markets for the abundance of wood from urban trees. Sperber is a founding partner of Wisconsin Urban Wood, a nonprofit focused on building networks of people and businesses that links material streams and availability of quality urban wood products and services across the state. He also is an appointed member of the Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council and represents Wisconsin in the Urban Wood Network.
TBA representative of the Virginia Department of Forestry will round out the panel. The VDF recently launched the Virginia Urban Wood Group and was active in the development of the Southeast Urban Wood Exchange in collaboration with Georgia and North Carolina.
Rich Christianson, owner of Richson Media LLC and communications director of the Illinois Wood Utilization Team (IL WUT), will moderate the session. Through his involvement with IL WUT, Christianson represents Illinois in the Urban Wood Network, which also includes representatives of urban wood groups in Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin, plus individual companies and entities located east of the Rocky Mountains.
Major sponsor Wood-Mizer LLC of Indianapolis, IN, (IWF booth #6575) is a manufacturer of portable and stationary sawmills, sawblades and other wood processing equipment and accessories.
“With Wood-Mizer wood processing equipment, diseased and dying city trees can find new life in a piece of furniture that could have otherwise gone to waste,” said Darryl Floyd COO of Wood-Mizer. “Throughout the past decade, Wood-Mizer has seen a major influx of successful businesses who are utilizing urban sourced wood for their sawmilling operations and we are proud to manufacture a product that enables small businesses to be profitable with an underutilized resource. While Wood-Mizer has been educating woodworkers about the positive environmental and economic impact of urban wood for years, the Urban Wood Seminar at IWF 2018 will continue to be a step forward in saving more trees from going into the waste stream.”
Even though the IWF Urban Wood Utilization seminar is being presented free of charge, attendees must register to guarantee a seat at the program. Learn more and register.

For information about becoming a seminar sponsor and general inquiries, contact Rich Christianson at 773-822-6750; richc.illinoisurbanwood@gmail.com.

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