ATLANTA – The Urban Wood Network, in partnership with the International Woodworking Fair, will present a free seminar, “The Urban Wood Movement: Expanding from Coast to Coast” during IWF.

The 90-minute session is scheduled for 1 p.m. Wednesday, August 26. This represents the third consecutive edition of the biennial industrial woodworking show to feature a seminar devoted to urban wood utilization.

IWF, North America’s largest gathering of woodworking professionals and suppliers, runs August 25-28 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. 

“It’s amazing how far the urban wood movement has advanced since we held the first seminar at IWF 2016,” said Rich Christianson, editor and publisher of IllinoisUrbanWood.org, a website advocating the responsible reuse of felled community trees for lumber and wood products.

“Since then, the Urban Wood Network has emerged as a rapidly expanding national association representing stakeholders up and down the entire supply chain including arborists, sawyers and custom woodworkers. We’re looking forward to sharing the latest information at IWF, including the creation of national standards and certification of urban wood lumber and products that will help drive increased market demand.”

“Lumber produced from urban wood can be utilized in a broad range of scales ranging from one-of-a-kind custom furniture pieces to large-scale construction projects,” said Don Peterson, executive director of the Urban Wood Network. “As detrimental as the wide sweeping urban tree mortality has been to communities, it has also made large volumes of urban wood available for conversion into lumber, providing enough resource for large scale projects.”

Christianson will moderate the session that will feature a trio of presenters, all representatives of companies belonging to the Urban Wood Network. They include Jennifer Alger, CEO of Far West Forest Products based in Sheridan, California. Far West is a family-owned logging and sawmilling business that promotes the use of local native species and underutilized logs including reclaimed urban wood.

Also speaking will be Carmen Rodriguez, chief marketing officer of Eutree, based in Villa Rica, Georgia. Eutree is a boutique lumber mill that partners with local tree services to repurpose trees removed in the Atlanta area for lumber, flooring, slabs and more.

Dwayne Sperber, owner of Wudeward Urban Forest Products based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, will speak at the event. Wudeward exclusively sources Wisconsin urban wood in working with architects, interior designers, builders, homeowners, developers, manufacturers and furniture makers nationwide.

The panel of experts will discuss urban wood’s unique local appeal, environmental advantages, finding local sources, business benefits and more. The presenters will also answer questions about urban wood utilization directed by individual audience members. The Georgia Forestry Commission signed on as the first sponsor of the program.

For more information about the IWF urban wood seminar, including sponsorship opportunities, contact Rich Christianson at [email protected] or phone 773-822-6750.

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