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Celebrating training & business success

5 June 2023
It was a well-timed event for the Southern North Island Wood Council to hold their Forestry Awards on the night of 12 May 2023 in Palmerston North. 410 members of the forestry community came together to finally find something to celebrate and have a good catch up over a buffet dinner, drinks and entertainment that are provided as part of this event.

The event celebrated the 13 trophies that were awarded from a record pool of 74 nominees. The new social media campaign titled, “Nominate a Mate” that was released over Instagram and Facebook in the weeks leading up to the event resulted in more nominations than ever from the contractor members nominating each other, and many new faces were drawn into the awards.

Erica Kinder, Wood Council CEO and event coordinator commented that this year the focus of the evening was really on the nominees with slideshows playing during the evening showing every nominee and spot prizes and the $500 UDC Lucky prize draw handed out to nominees during the evening. “We really needed a night to get together, celebrate ourselves for once and send our 410 attendees back out there as advocates for the sector, with some good stories to tell. I think as a Wood Council, we pulled together an amazing event.”

Some standout winners on the night were Mangoihe Logging from the Manawatu who came away with three winners from their crew. Max Gibson for Emerging Talent of the Year, Ben Hale for Harvesting Excellence, and a whole crew award for Outstanding Health and Safety Management.

McCarthy Transport took home two trophies on the night with Dave Cummings winning for Distribution Excellence, and the standing ovation for Mark McCarthy (photo) for Contribution to the Forest Sector. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house as Mark was helped to the stage by his two sons, Matt and Mike McCarthy.

New categories this year were crowd favourites with Hariata Wipaki from Moutere Logging in the Manawatu winning Woman in Forestry Award of Excellence, and Oxnam Family winning the Forestry Family of the Year.

Other winners on the night were Fred Dickson from Kiwilumber winning Wood Processing Excellence, Silviculture Excellence was Wairarapa based D & T Silviculture, Josh Blazek from Farman Turkington Forestry won Outstanding Environmental Management. Contractor of the Year was Manawatu-based Foxpine Logging who took home the chainsaw from Stihl Shop Masterton along with sponsored prize packs and $100 vouchers for Hunting and Fishing.

A new award this year sponsored by Safetree was Health and Safety Champion. This was awarded to Nik Bradnock from Clearwood Contracting in the Wairarapa for his sensitive harvesting of an archaeological Iwi site.

Source: Southern North Island Wood Council