Category Archives: Annual Meeting

Your Woodlands at Work is focus for 2018 Annual Meeting


Mark your calendar to attend our annual meeting March 20-21 at General Butler State Park in Carrollton, Kentucky. General Butler State Park overlooks the Ohio River approximately 1 1/2 hours from Lexington and less than an hour from Louisville.

Kentucky Tourism

General Butler State Park is Northern Kentucky’s first state park and one of the first 10 in the commonwealth. On August 12, 1931, a 300-acre tract comprising part of the old William O. Butler family farm became Kentucky’s sixth state park. Not only is the park a historic site, it is also a place of great natural beauty. This is the only spot in Kentucky that has the unique view of the convergence of the Kentucky and Ohio Rivers.

The theme for this year’s meeting is Your Woodlands at Work. The entire event will begin with two tours of how oak barrels are being used in the distillery and wine industry. Both of the products are being made locally in Kentucky.

The event begins on Tuesday morning in Frankfort, Kentucky at the Buffalo Trace Distillery.

For over 200 years, Buffalo Trace has been defined by a dedication to one craft; making fine bourbon whiskey.

After a tour of this facility we will move on north to the Elk Creek Winery

to better understand how white oak and the wine industry are connected. Lunch will be provided while at the winery.

After visiting Elk Creek you can proceed to General Butler State Park to continue with the annual meeting events including a buffet meal and several topics of interest to woodland owners. The following morning, March 21, the educational program continues.

To register for the annual meeting go to Annual Meeting page.

Room reservations at General Butler State Park can be made by calling General Butler State Park at 502-732-4384. Mention that you are attending the KWOA Woodlands Owners Conference. The conference room rate is $81 per night. Rooms will be held until March 6th for KWOA registrants.

2018 KWOA and KWOF Annual Meeting

Kentucky Woodland Owners Association and Foundation

Your Woodlands at Work

Tuesday, March 20 – Wednesday, March 21

General Butler State Park

Carrollton, Kentucky


Tuesday, March 20

10 AM Tour Buffalo Trace Distillery (

The first stop will begin at the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort, Kentucky. From either Louisville or Lexington take I-64 and get off at Exit 58 and turn north onto US 60 west towards downtown Frankfort. Go straight for 5 miles and do not make any turns. This road will become 421 north and US 127 south and Wilkinson Blvd. After you drop off the hill the entrance to Buffalo Trace Distillery will be on your right. Look for the green plank fence and turn right  through the big stone gates.

We will be setting out signs as you get close to the turn into Buffalo Trace Distillery. Signs also will be placed to direct you to the correct parking lot for the tour.

A tour will be made of Buffalo Trace explaining the history and production of Buffalo Trace’s products. There will be an opportunity to sample and purchase products.

11:45 AM Depart Buffalo Trace Distillery and proceed to Elk Creek Winery                (

When leaving Buffalo Trace Distillery, turn left. Travel only a mile or so and exit to your right to state route 2261 and 127. At the stop sign turn left (north) on 127. It is suggested that you not use “street pilots” to next location. Best route would be to go to Owenton where 127 intersects with route 227. Turn right on 227. In less than 5 miles turn left on 1883 and 330. Again, signs will be set out for you.

12:30 PM Lunch on site at Elk Creek Winery

Upon arriving at Elk Creek Winery lunch will be provided. Following the lunch there will be a tour of the facility explaining the production of their wines.

3:00 PM Depart from Elk Creek Winery proceeding to General Butler State Park. Proceed back to 227 from the winery and turn right. In Owenton follow 127 north until you come to route 35. Turn  left on 35 and proceed to the interstate 71 and proceed west to General Butler/Carrollton exit. Turn right and proceed north to the General Butler State Park entrance on your left (approximately   three miles from the interstate.) The park lodge is at the top of the hill. The trip from Elk Creek Winery to General Butler State Park is approximately 45 minutes.

6:00 PM KWOA and KWOF Annual Awards Banquet (located in the General Butler Conference Center – a short walk from the lodge)

Following the banquet:

University of Kentucky Forestry and Natural Resource Student Presentation

University of Kentucky Forestry and Natural Resource Student Scholarship KWOF Award Presentation

Kentucky Division of Forestry Service Foresters Award Presentation

Kentucky and National Tree Farm Report

Society of American Foresters Baggenstoss Award

Presentation of Leopold Program

Wednesday, March 21

(Breakfast on your own / please make arrangements for check out)

(Meeting will resume again at the General Butler Conference Center)

8:30 AM Welcome and Announcements

8:45 AM White Oak Supply Report and Ash Issues in Kentucky

White oak and ash are important tree species to many Kentucky woodland owners. In 2017, University of Kentucky Forestry Department conducted a survey at the KWOA annual meeting to better understand woodland owner perceptions of current and future white oak supply issues. Also in 2017, KWOA requested the development of a white paper on the EAB Disaster in Kentucky. This presentation will present results from these research projects.

9:15 AM Kentucky Forest Health Updates

In addition to the emerald ash borer, several other invasive insects and diseases present potential threats to Kentucky forest health.  Neighboring states have Asian longhorned beetle, European gypsy moth, and thousand cankers disease, but what are these and what do they mean for Kentucky?  This session will introduce you to these threats and also discuss the current management strategies to protecting our woodlands.

9:45 AM Deer Management in Kentucky

This talk will cover the basics of assessing the health of your deer herd, how to monitor its population and health status, and the varying management strategies that can be used to meet deer management goals. Focus will be placed on the how-to for initial assessments of your deer herds population, how to collect the data, and how anyone with a computer can track and analyze it to help manage their deer herd. Effectively using trail cameras, habitat improvement ideas including food plots and forest management strategies will be covered.

10:30 AM Break

10:45 AM Cooperators Reports

Kentucky Division of Forestry

University of Kentucky Report

Kentucky Conservation Committee

Kentucky Forestry Industries Association


11:15 AM KWOA and KWOF Annual Business Meeting and Elections

12:00 PM Adjourn

Josh Frazier receives KWOA Outstanding Service Forester Award

Josh Frazier, service forester for northeastern Kentucky, received KWOA’s Outstanding Service Forester Award at this year’s annual meeting.

Josh Frazier accepts KWOA Outstanding Service Forester Award from Henry Duncan, past KWOA president and Frank Hicks, current president
Photo by Billy Thomas, UK Forestry Extension

Frazier has been employed by the Kentucky Division of Forestry for more than eleven years. He became a Service Forester for northeastern Kentucky in 2008.

Josh’s love of the land is demonstrated by his dedication to good forestry, his enthusiasm for his job and his willingness to work with landowners and encourage them to be involved in managing their forests.

Intrepid hikers trek to bridge

The annual meeting was not all speakers and business. Several members found time between rain storms to hike up to The Bridge. Portia and Jerry Brown, Jerry Adams and Jerry Schneider completed the trek at dawn the first day of the meeting to watch the sun come up under the bridge before the day’s indoor programs began.

Bridge at dawn
Photo by Portia Brown

As one astute member later observed, the three men gave a whole new meaning to gerrymandering. The three Jerry’s paused from their meandering long enough for this photo op.

The Jerry’s meandering from left to right: Jerry Brown, Jerry Adams and Jerry Schneider
Photo by Portia Brown










They were not alone in their quest. Karen and Steve Marshall hit the near vertical trail the evening before and just ahead of a furious rain storm.


Updates from our cooperators – first quarter 2017

Forest fires

The Kentucky Division of Forestry implemented some novel procedures to address the 2016 fall forest fire hazard season (October 1 through December 15). Bill Steele, KDF Director, reported that 50,000 acres burned in the state last fall. KDF gave crash courses in fire fighting to staff from the state Mining and Fish &Wildlife agencies, as well as volunteer firemen in 2016. The agency plans to increase the number of seasonal firefighters whose pay is funded during the fire season. This expansion will free up its rangers in 2017 to implement prescribed burns, trail maintenance, invasives control and streamside management. (The spring fire season stretches from February 15 through April 30.)

Logging inspections

The above changes to rangers’ duties also intends for them to conduct fewer logging operation inspections. There are currently 50 rangers qualified to inspect logging sites who conduct 80-90 inspections per year.  By law the rangers are only required to respond to complaints, bad actors and requests for assistance.

Tree nurseries

Kentucky’s two nurseries have lost $400,000 in the last two years. The goal is to have them break even in the next two years. One initiative will be to grow more white oak with assistance from the state’s distilleries who require this species for their bourbon barrels. Another push will be plant tree seedlings on 140,000 acres of abandoned mined lands in eastern Kentucky. Although there are some land preparation and property ownership issues, Pam Snyder reported that there is Abandoned Mined Land Reclamation funding for the tree planting.

Forest management plans and NRCS

Progress in reinstating NRCS (Natural Resources Conservation Service) reimbursement to KDF for marking trees should expedite the backlog of forest management plans. NRCS is also expanding the number of technical service providers (private consulting foresters who have met the TSP certification) to write Conservation Activity Plans for Forest Management (CAP-FM). In addition, the traditional Conservation Stewardship Plan is being expanded to include a practice plan and new program elements now called enhancements. Two thirds of the enhancements are forestry or wildlife related. Hopefully this change will speed up the EQIP (Environmental Quality Incentives Program) application process.

Intergenerational transfer of family farm is cyclical, not linear

“Don’t worry, I’ll take care of you” is the ultimate conversation stopper, says Steve Isaacs, UK extension coordinator for farm management, in the complex and often unpleasant and unproductive dialogue between family generations regarding what will happen to the family farm.

Steve Isaacs de-bunks popular myths about how to transfer the family farm
Photo by Billy Thomas, UK Forestry Extension

Family farm succession is about more than legal and tax implications according to Dr. Isaacs who is also director for the UK Tax Education Program. It is about the transfer of assets, management, leadership and, yes, debt in a cyclical process.

Isaacs stressed that the first priority in this cycle is assuring an adequate retirement income for the parents. The estate tax is a paper tiger for most people; “death taxes don’t destroy family farms… families do.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics there are only two categories of workers that are older than farmers – school crossing guards and Walmart greeters.

Isaacs recommended engaging a transition team familiar with farmland issues that could include an attorney, accountant, financial planner, lender, extension educator and/or business consultant. This team’s function is to identify and generate ideas, technical information, evaluation and suggestions.

Isaacs recommended conducting the transition discussion at a neutral location, not at the family kitchen table. He advised treating siblings fairly, not necessarily equally and include spouses in the discussion.

A facilitator and recorder will summarize and document the items on which the family has agreed.

With some guidance and a transition plan, Isaacs says the conversation by the entire family can become “Here’s how we’re going to take care of things.”

Steve will be conducting a full day session on this subject in the near future. Check our events page for that announcement.

Herb Loyd, KWOA founder, recognized at annual meeting

Dr. Herb Loyd, one of KWOA’s six founders, was recognized for his contributions to the association by Donald Girton at the2017 annual meeting.

Loyd was born and raised in rural West Virginia. His interest in forestry came by a circuitous route that started with military service in Germany and acquaintance with a German forester.

That experience prompted Herb to acquire forest property in Fleming County in the early 1980’s and begin active management. Herb has hosted numerous meetings and field days at his tree farm.

Herb’s involvement with KWOA has been extensive since serving on its organizing committee in 1994 and subsequently as treasurer, director, vice president as well as education and policy committee chair. He participated in developing the association’s articles of incorporation, by-laws, its initial strategy focus and its 2004 position statement.

Herb Loyd (right to left), one of KWOA’s founders, was recognized by another founder, Don Girton, with Frank Hicks, current president and Jack Rentz, previous president.
Photo by Billy Thomas, UK Forestry Extension

In his tribute to Herb Loyd, Girton, also a KWOA founder, commented that what he had learned to appreciate about Herb was his “passion for woodland resources, implementation of programs based on sound policy and problem-solving that leads to positive outcomes.”

Items to consider when purchasing woodland property

Chris Will, Consulting Forester, advised annual meeting attendees to consider three important items when considering the purchase of a woodland property:

the tax consequences of selling a woodlands property versus holding it as an investment

protect it with a survey

develop a forest management plan and keep the plan updated.

Woodland acquistition criteria panelists, (right to left) Chris Will, Kate Robie and Matt Springer discuss what to do and what to avoid when considering a property purchase; Doug McLaren moderating.
Photo by Billy Thomas, UK Forestry Extension

Will was part of a panel discussing Woodland Acquisition Criteria at the 2017 KWOA annual meeting.

Thanks to the educators and cooperators who made the KWOA 2017 a success

KWOA appreciates the time, travel and expertise of the many professionals who participated in its annual meeting at Natural Bridge State Park. Their expertise, availability for questions and dedication to their various roles in private woodlands management inspired and clarified the future for woodlands owners attending the annual meeting.

Brown Forman Corporation

H&S Lumber Mill

Kentucky Division of Forestry

Kentucky Forest Industries Association

Powell Valley Millwork

University of Kentucky Forestry Extension

University of Kentucky Department of Forestry

Christopher J. Will, ACF, Central Kentucky Forest Management, Inc.

Kate Robie, Retired Timberland Investment Professional