Call for nominations: Softwood Lumber Board seeks candidates

Call for nominations - Softwood Lumber Board seeks candidatesThe Softwood Lumber Board (Board), which administers a national research and promotion program for softwood lumber, is seeking nominees to fill six seats on the Board. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA, which oversees the program, would like to encourage all eligible industry members to participate in the process. In an effort to enhance the diversity of the Board, USDA also encourages women, minorities and people with disabilities to seek positions on the Board.

As you may know, the Board is composed of 19 members. The Board meets throughout the year to review marketing and research activities and make recommendations to USDA regarding its programs. The national program became effective in 2011 and is funded by assessments on U.S. manufacturers and importers of softwood lumber to the United States. The purpose of the program is to increase the demand for softwood lumber within the United States.

The terms of office for six seats will expire December 31, 2013. Four seats are for U.S. manufacturers – one representing the Northeast and Lake States, two representing the South and one representing the West. Two seats are for importers of softwood lumber to the United States – one representing Canada West and one representing other importing countries. The positions are for a 3-year term of office ending December 31, 2016.

Nomination applications are due to the Board by Thursday, January 31, 2013. The names of eligible nominees will be placed on a ballot by region. Ballots will then be mailed to the five regions for a vote. The votes will be tabulated for each region with the nominee receiving the highest number of votes at the top of the list in descending order by vote. The top two candidates for each position shall be submitted to the Secretary of Agriculture. The Secretary will then appoint the members. Please see the the official form “NOMINATION FOR APPOINTMENT TO THE SOFTWOOD LUMBER BOARD.” Applications are also available at

If you are interested in increasing your involvement in the softwood lumber industry, we encourage you to consider running for a position on the Board. Detailed information on the process is being provided to you by the Board. If you would like more information on the program or on serving on the Board, please contact Steve Lovett, Board CEO, at (312) 321-5131 or by email at; or Maureen Pello, USDA Marketing Specialist, at (503) 632-8848 or by email at

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Call For Nominations – Background and Instructions

The Softwood Lumber Board (SLB), the 19 member Board that oversees the softwood lumber check-off, seeks nominations from the industry to identify softwood lumber manufacturers interested in candidacy for Board seats coming open in January, 2014. The Order establishing the check-off requires the SLB to oversee nominations and elections.

The Secretary of Agriculture appointed the initial Softwood Lumber Board for staggered two, three and four year terms with the option for Board members to seek a second term. Six seats with two year terms expire at the end of 2013. A total of six seats representing the following regions, come open for three year terms beginning in January 2014, as follows:

Northeast: One Seat
South: Two Seats
West: One Seat
Canada West: One Seat
Overseas: One Seat

The SLB will conduct regional elections in 2013, and will submit names of the top two candidates to the Secretary of Agriculture, who will appoint the Directors. Board members appointed to begin in 2014 will serve a three-year term of office and will be eligible to serve no more than two consecutive terms. Board members serve without compensation, but will be reimbursed for reasonable travel expenses which they incur when performing Board business.

The Softwood Lumber Board (SLB) sees the pursuit of diversity in Board membership as an opportunity for embracing new ideas and growth that will enable boards to better serve the industry. Central to this effort is the goal of growing new leadership to serve on the SLB that reflects a diversity of perspectives and opinions. The industry that pays the marketing and promotion assessment is diverse, and the SLB should reflect that diversity in the size of operations, experience of members, methods of production and distribution, marketing strategies, and other distinguishing factors that will bring different perspectives and ideas to the table.

Interested parties may self-nominate or nominate others to become candidates in the regional elections by sending the form “NOMINATION FOR APPOINTMENT TO THE SOFTWOOD LUMBER BOARD” to Steve Lovett, CEO, Softwood Lumber Board at, or mail information to Steve Lovett, Softwood Lumber Board, 330 North Wabash Avenue, Suite 2000, Chicago, IL 60611. Nominees should include a short background statement outlining their qualifications to serve on the Board. An individual’s track record of relevant experience as demonstrated by active participation in generic industry research and promotional activities, along with the reasons for wishing to serve, will be appreciated. The deadline for nominations is January 31, 2013.

Qualifications for serving on the Softwood Lumber Board follow:

1. The Board will be comprised of manufacturers and importers of softwood lumber who annually ship or import 15 million board feet or more of softwood lumber into the United States. Heads of business and senior executives are encouraged to consider running for a seat on the Board.
2. No two members of the Board may be employed by a single company.
3. Seats on the Board will be apportioned by region based on the volume of softwood lumber manufactured or imported.
4. Domestic manufacturers who manufacture softwood lumber in more than one region may seek nomination only in the region in which they manufacture the majority of their softwood lumber.
5. Importer nominees shall certify that the majority of their softwood lumber is imported from the respective region which they are seeking to represent on the Board and shall provide documentation to verify this if requested.

The timeline and details about the nominations – elections – appointments process follow:

December 1 through January 31, 2012: The SLB will conduct outreach calling for candidates and detailing qualifications and the nomination appointment process to all segments of the softwood lumber industry; outreach will include direct mail to assessment payers, trade press and trade associations. The Board will work with USDA AMS and outreach to additional sources recommended by AMS. All materials will reference the Board’s diversity policy and encourage qualified persons of all backgrounds to consider seeking a seat on the Board.

December 1, 2012: Softwood lumber domestic manufacturers and importers may submit nominations to the Board. Self nominations are welcome.

January 31, 2013: Nominations closed. Background statements outlining candidates’ qualifications to serve on the Board are due.

March, 2013: The names of domestic manufacturer nominees shall be placed on a ballot by region. The ballots along with voting instructions and the background statements shall be mailed to domestic manufacturers in each respective region for a vote. The election period shall be 20 business days. Election is closed. The votes shall be tabulated for each region with the nominee receiving the highest number of votes at the top of the list in descending order by vote.

June, 2013: The top two candidates for each position shall be submitted to the Secretary. From the nominations submitted by the Board, the Secretary shall select the members of the Board.

November, 2013: Secretary appoints new Board members.

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