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Oregon’s Forest Practices Operators of the Year announced
News Release
January 9, 2013
Contact: Kevin Weeks, ODF Public Affairs (503) 945-7427
 
 
The Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) today announced the 2012 Forest Practices Operator of the Year and Merit Award winners, recognizing innovation and commitment to protecting natural resources while working in Oregon’s forests.
 
The state Board of Forestry established the awards program during the 1990’s to honor individuals and businesses that consistently meet or exceed the natural resource protection standards set by the Oregon Forest Practices Act. The Act requires post-harvest reforestation, streamside buffers, road-building and maintenance standards, and other measures to protect natural resources during forest operations.
 
Ken Fallon Logging – Northwest Region Operator of the Year
 
Fallon, a Tillamook-based logger since 1968, was honored for work on the Jordan Bound timber sale in the Tillamook State Forest – a harvest site with steep terrain and limited road access.
 
“Steep” meant some log trucks and equipment operating at grades between 20 percent and 35 percent, including instances where a heavy-lift bulldozer pulled fully loaded log trucks up the hill for additional support. Harvesting trees on ridges also meant using cable harvest systems that extended over a mile long to keep trees suspended above the ground, a measure that helps protect soil.
 
“Ken Fallon’s crews always seem to get our most difficult jobs,” said Joe Travers, timber sale administrator with the ODF Tillamook District. “The Jordan Bound units have probably been among the toughest logging we’ve had on our district in a long time.”

Fallon Logging employs over 100 people in northwestern Oregon. Fallon is known for being involved in community events around Tillamook, and was also honored as Forest Practices Operator of the Year in 2004.

George Hagedorn – Eastern Oregon Region Operator of the Year
 
Hagedorn Logging of La Grande is recognized for work performing a thinning harvest across 525 acres of the popular Mt. Emily Recreation Area overlooking La Grande in Union County.

Hagedorn was selected for the task by the forest landowner based on Hagedorn’s consistent record of successful projects in eastern Oregon. Careful planning work meant a timber harvest yielding two million board feet while receiving compliments from multiple recreation groups for protecting the area’s scenic, environmental and social values.

Hagedorn designed skid trails to have a low impact on soils, including established horse and hiking trails.

“They were very happy with how it turned out,” said George Hagedorn, owner of Hagedorn Logging. “I think we surprised them.”

The minimal disturbance to the area’s visual appeal is highlighted by one visitor to the site after harvest asking the landowner when the area was scheduled to be logged, unaware that the harvest had already occurred.
 
Recognizing excellence
 
Seven companies were also recognized for excellence as Merit Award winners for 2012:
 
• DeSantis Drilling of Silverton
• Jim Graf Logging of Myrtle Creek
• Hennes Logging of Gates
• JWTR LLC of Klamath Falls
• Lankford Logging of Pilot Rock
• Meng Logging of Molalla
• Watterson Logging of John Day
 
Award recipients were selected by the Board of Forestry’s three Regional Forest Practices Committees, which evaluate nominees based on consistency of positive performance, innovation in project design, relative difficulty of a forest operation and a commitment to protecting Oregon’s natural resources.
 
The winners will be recognized during the statewide meeting of Associated Oregon Loggers in Eugene on January 10, during the Oregon Logging Conference in February, and at the Board’s March 6 meeting in Salem.
 
With passage of the Forest Practices Act in 1971, Oregon became the first state to enact forest management laws that regulate forest operations and protect natural resources. The act has been revised many times in response to new scientific findings and changing societal interests.  
 
Additional information about sustainable forest management in Oregon’s forests is available on the Oregon Department of Forestry web site, www.oregon.gov/ODF

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NOTE:
 
Video profiles of the Fallon and Hagedorn awards are available on the web for viewing –
 
Fallon:             http://vimeo.com/58828125
 
Hagedorn:       http://vimeo.com/56830394
 
Photos of award-winning sites are available to news media upon request.