International Convention

Forest Products Society


The 71th International Convention will feature sessions targeting wood properties in construction, wood and the environment, education and marketing for the forest products industry, and advances in technology.

Keynote Speakers

NOTE: Program subject to change

Check back periodically to view the most-up-date list of speakers.

MONDAY, June 26, 2017


Dr. Rubin Smulsky, Sustainable Bioproducts Department Head, Mississippi State University


Welcome Remarks
Mark E. Keenum, President, Mississippi State University


'The Forest Products Industry is Alive and Well in Mississippi, Providing Products throughout The World'
Dewey Philip ('Phil') Bryant – Governor of Mississippi


'State of Forest Products Research and Development in North America'
Trevor Raymond Stuthridge, Executive V-P, FP Innovations


'Paradigm Shifts in the North American Sawmill Industry'
Steve Singleton, President, Southern Pine Inspection Bureau

Overview of the transition of Southern US sawmills from mainly private family mills to large public Canadian owned companies and new greenfield production to increase rated capacity and overall industry production.

TUESDAY, June 27, 2017


'Reinventing and Reshoring Forest Products Manufacturing in America'.
Will Hill, Mayor of Louisville, Winston County, Mississippi

Examples of keeping industry viable and having industry return/come to the US.  Mayor Hill was involved with several case examples of this in Louisville, Winston County. 


'Building a Green Field OSB Production Facility'
Scott Poole, Senior Vice President/Chief Operating Officer, Roy O. Martin

Roy O. Martin, a family owned company, is building one of the largest OSB plants in the world in East Texas. The presenter will discuss the business decision, construction of the plant and supplying a product mix to meet growing consumer demand.

9:00 -9:30
‘Experiences with development of international markets for industrial products’

Ms. Pat Thomasson, CEO, Thomasson Company


‘The International Supply Chain for Wood Pellets’
Richard Peberdy, Vice President, Sustainability for Drax Biomass, Inc, USA

Drax Biomass provides pellets to fuel energy plants in United Kingdom. Reducing carbon emissions in Europe takes place, to a large extent, by producing the substitute for coal with wood pellets from the Southern US.   Drax has pellet plants in Gloster, Mississippi and Bastrop, Louisiana. After production, the pellets are stored at the Port of Baton Rouge and then then shipped to the UK.

WEDNESDAY, June 28, 2017


'The Global Forest Products Industry Continues To Grow'
World Nieh, USDA FS National Program Leader for Forest Products and Utilization

More and more, the world is a single market place, with interrelated supply-demand and impact factors, including currency conversion rates, having more of an impact than political boundaries.


'The Growth of the Global Veneer Based Plywood and Engineered Lumber Industry'
Richard (Dick) Baldwin, Managing Partner, Oak Creek Investments LLC

Plywood continues to grow globally. It has re-invented itself as a product of 10,000+ uses to meet specific customer needs. Engineered Lumber trends with the economy and is in a growth mode in the world.


Development of Cellulose Nanofiber and Nanocomposite in China' 
Dr. Yiqiang Wu, vice president of Central South University of Forestry and Technology, China

When China reaches 1 cubic meter per person per year, China will consume 60-65% of all wood products manufactured in the world. This presentation will summarize the research in cellulose nanofiber and nanocomposite in China.  It will also discuss the commercialization of cellulose nanofiber in the local enterprise and future opportunities.


'Declaration of Interdependence’
Dr. Steve Bullard, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs, Stephen F. Austin State University

The 21st century will be a period of dramatic, profound changes in how we produce, market, and distribute forest products and other bio-based goods and services throughout the world. As forest products professionals it is mission critical that we be highly focused and highly intentional regarding the interdependence of people, organizations, and cultures. This presentation will focus on why interdependence is mission critical for forest products professionals and for FPS, what is meant by a declaration of interdependence, and how can walk the talk of interdependence as the world’s largest network of forest products professionals.