Monthly Archives: November 2015

Renewable Natural Resource Foundation (RNRF) Annual Meeting held October 28, 2015

I represented SWST as the Executive Board Member at the RNRF Annual Meeting at Rockwood Manor in Potomac, MD near the Washington, DC border. This was the first Annual Meeting under the new RNRF structure. Until recently, RNRF was mainly financially supported by rentals of real estate property holdings located at the headquarter location of RNRF. The conclusion of the sale of those holding was completed in early 2015 and RNRF, after moving to a commercial office building, has funding from that sale to better support technical programs. The mission “to advance the application of science in decision-making, promote interdisciplinary collaboration, and educate policymakers and the public on managing and conserving renewable natural resources” will remain the same. Activity level will increase, as evidenced by the recent hire of a Research Associate to advance more communication with member groups and the general public.


Of relevance to SWST, the U.S. Forest Service’s Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration Program (CFLRP) was the recipient of RNRF’s 2015 Outstanding Achievement Award as part of the Annual Meeting. This award recognizes a project, publication, piece of legislation, or similar concrete accomplishment in the natural resources field. The CFLRP is an innovative approach to managing and conserving our natural resources through accelerating restoration of high-priority landscapes through a science-based, collaborative approach. Such restoration enhances forest and watershed resiliency and promotes social, ecological and economic sustainability; including the use of timber, where relevant. The significance of timber use in landscape restoration is important to the goals of SWST.


Pictured left to right: John Crockett, Assistant Director, Forest Management, U.S. Forest Service, Lindsay Buchanan, CFLR Program Coordinator, U.S. Forest Service, Richard Engberg, RNRF Chairman, Tom Tidwell, Chief, U.S. Forest Service


Howard N. Rosen

SWST RNRF Representative

Assistant Professor of Forest Biomaterials 
School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science Michigan Technological University


Assistant Professor of Forest Biomaterials

School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science

Michigan Technological University


JOB DESCRIPTION: The School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science at Michigan Technological University ( invites applications for the position of Assistant Professor of Forest Biomaterials. This is a nine-month, tenure-track position and salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. The successful applicant will lead an ambitious research and teaching program in Forest Biomaterials, which is identified as a University-wide strategic initiative. In 2013, the School established the statewide Michigan Forest Biomaterials Initiative ( and the candidate is expected to align with its exciting opportunities.

ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS: We are seeking a colleague whose background and interests are centered on forest biomaterials innovation, including in one or more traditional or emerging areas, such as wood science, bio-manufacturing, composites, wood preservation, marketing, entrepreneurship, supply chain analysis, and life cycle assessment. Experience in community outreach and small-scale or value-added production would be an asset.

The successful candidate must have: 1) the ability to teach effectively at the graduate and undergraduate levels; 2) a Ph.D. in forest biomaterials, or a closely related field, at the time of appointment; 3) a record of research and scholarship in biomaterials including publications in peer-reviewed journals; and, 4) the ability to communicate effectively with students, professionals, and the general public. Preferred qualifications include: experience teaching courses in forest biomaterials, wood properties and uses, forest products marketing or entrepreneurship; post-doctoral research experience and training; and successful development of competitive externally-funded grants.

RESPONSIBILITIES: The successful candidate will: 1) teach an undergraduate course in wood technology and a graduate course in the candidate’s area of interest; 2) develop a vigorous, externally funded research program in forest biomaterials; 3) advise undergraduate students, and direct graduate student research at the M.S. and Ph.D. levels; and 4) participate in School and University committees.

The successful candidate will contribute to the School’s vision as a premier, national center of excellence in forest resources and environmental science education, research, and outreach. Opportunities exist for collaborations with the Ecosystem Science Center (, the Sustainable Futures Institute (, and the Michigan Tech Research Institute (, and with external organizations such as the USDA Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory  ( and Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science (; and the Department of Forestry at Michigan State University (, among other academic institutions.

THE SCHOOL, UNIVERSITY, AND COMMUNITY: Michigan Tech’s School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science is one of the most productive forest research programs in the country. The School is particularly well known for its excellence in the fields of forestry, applied ecology, forest molecular genetics, and wildlife management. In 2015, USA Today reported that the School’s undergraduate programs in Natural Resources and Conservation were ranked in the top 10 in the nation. The National Research Council currently and consistently ranks the School’s Forest Science PhD. Program in the top 10 nationally. The School was also ranked No. 1 in the number of forestry journal citations per FTE faculty member in a 2006 study published in the Journal of Forestry.

Established in 1885, Michigan Tech is a nationally recognized, doctorate-granting, research University with a chartered mandate to serve the industry of the State of Michigan. The university enrolls about 7,000 students and is a leader in science and engineering education. Michigan Tech is an ADVANCE institution, one of a limited number of universities in receipt of NSF funds in support of our commitment to increase diversity and the participation and advancement of women in STEM.

Located in Houghton, on the south shore of Lake Superior, Michigan Tech offers a friendly, safe, and affordable living environment with excellent schools and opportunities for exceptional, year-round outdoor recreation. See

APPLICATION PROCEDURE: Send curriculum vita, names and contact information for three references, a one-page statement of research interests, a one-page statement of teaching philosophy, and selected reprints to: .

Review of applications will begin January 31, 2016 and will continue until an appropriate candidate is chosen.

Michigan Technological University acknowledges the importance of supporting dual-career partners in attracting and retaining a quality workforce. Michigan Tech is committed to offering career exploration advice and assistance wherever feasible and appropriate at the University and in the local community. See for additional information. Michigan Technological University is an Equal Opportunity Educational Institution/Equal Opportunity Employer, which includes providing equal opportunity for protected veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Mass Timber Conference: Cross-laminated timber and mass timber construction in the U.S.

North America’s premier cross-laminated timber and mass timber construction event — the Mass Timber Conference — is set for March 22-24, 2016 in Portland, Oregon USA. The event will feature two full days of education tracks and a one-day tour (more info soon). Mass timber experts from around the world will make up our educational agenda that aims to help U.S. companies overcome current hurdles in CLT production and construction, and increase the use of mass timber in mid- and high-rise buildings throughout North America.

The current exhibitors at the event are: MyTiCon Timber Connectors, Binderholz, Wienig, StructureCraft Builders, Minda, James G. Murphy Co, Oregon Forest Research Institute, RedBuilt, Siga Cover, Structurlam, and Costa Sanders with several other verbal commitments.

Word of mouth has been tremendous, with many companies in Europe, Canada, and the U.S. reaching out to state their desire to exhibit and sponsor. We are running an extra early-bird discount through Dec. 2 on attendee passes and exhibit spaces where registrants can save 25% off full price.

Please see the event website for more information and feel free to give me a call with any questions.

Join us at the 2016 Mass Timber Conference:

Assistant Professor in Forest Biomaterials and Energy School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences and the Cluster Hire Initiative at Auburn University

Assistant Professor in Forest Biomaterials and Energy School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences and the Cluster Hire Initiative at Auburn University


As part of the Auburn University’s Institute for Scalable Energy Conversion Science and Technology Cluster Hire Initiative, the School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences (SFWS) invites applications at the Assistant Professor rank in Forest Biomaterials and Energy. This is a 9 month tenure-track position with a 75% research and 25% teaching appointment beginning Fall 2016. The successful candidate for this interdisciplinary position will be expected to participate actively in Auburn University multidisciplinary Cluster Hires Initiative in the cluster of Climate, Human, and Earth System Sciences. New faculty with expertise in Biomaterials and Energy will complement the University’s considerable existing expertise in these areas to form the core of this innovative multidisciplinary initiative. Participation in the Climate, Human and Earth System Sciences will be an important component in faculty annual reviews.

While not limited to just these areas, some examples of research could include: biomass to conversion to solid energy, biological conversion into fuels and co-products/polymers, biomaterials that add value to a broader biorefinery/bioenergy process, biomaterials in polymers or biopolymers for energy circuits or applications, biomaterials from bioenergy waste residues, new construction materials for energy conservation, energy conversion and efficiency during manufacturing, bioenergy conversion and co-products/polymers from genetically improved or fast growing trees, forest based nanotechnology for energy conversion. Other complimentary areas are also welcomed in the area of Forest Biomaterials and Energy.

The applicant should have research skills that can be applied to Forest Biomaterials and Energy resulting in a robust research program. The candidate must show the potential for mentoring graduate students, securing competitive grants and publishing in peer reviewed journals. The successful applicant will also participate in undergraduate and graduate instruction, contribute to undergraduate curriculum development, and perform education based advising activities. Teaching responsibilities include 2 undergraduate courses and a graduate course.

A Ph.D. is required in one of the following fields: bioenergy, wood/plant chemistry, wood science, forest products, biomaterials, engineering, nanotechnology of renewable materials, new product development, renewable polymer science or other novel research programs relevant to Forest Biomaterials and Energy. We particularly seek applicants with demonstrated evidence of interdisciplinary research, securing grants, and innovation teaching.

To apply please go to, complete the online form and upload the required application documents: 1) cover letter addressing the candidate’s experience pertinent to the responsibilities of the position, 2) current curriculum vita, 3) Statement of research, 4) statement of philosophy on teaching at graduate and undergraduate levels, 5) copies of all graduate level academic transcripts, and 6) the names and contact information of at least three references. Review of applications will begin January 10, 2016 and will continue until a candidate accepts appointment.

This position is anticipated to start during the Fall of 2016. Applicants are encouraged to visit the AU website to learn more about Auburn University and Cluster Hire Initiative Applicants are encouraged to visit the AU website to learn more about Auburn University and Cluster Hire Initiative In support of our strategic plan, Auburn University will maintain its strong commitment to diversity with standards to help ensure faculty, staff, and student diversity through recruitment and retention efforts. Auburn University is an EEO/Vet/Disability employer. Applicants must be able to meet eligibility requirements to work in the United States at the time the appointment is scheduled to begin and continue working legally for the proposed term of employment.

November, the month before December


The year is entering the final two months. For some it is a time to begin reflecting on the accomplishments of the year, for others it is time to begin planning next year.  Whether you are reflecting, planning or continuing on projects that may take years or decades to complete reach out to others in our field and even those who are not. Find out what they are doing, see how you can help them, how you can tell the story and uses of wood.  We all bare a responsibility to our World to find answers to questions that are out there, and sometimes the answer is wood and sometimes the answer is not wood.  In either case that is an important thing to share.

There are may ways to share this, through peer reviewed journals like Wood and Fiber Science, through conferences like the annual conference in Curitiba, Brazil, or even through the Newsletter. Find a way to tell our story and the story of an amazing renewable, sustainable material.

If you would like to contribute to the newsletter, please email me at

Until December,