2012 ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF PRIVATE FOREST LANDOWNERS, PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FLORIDA
Landowner Panel Highlights
A highlight of the conference was an engaging, insightful and interactive landowner panel that included three well known and active advocates for private forest landowners.
The panel discussion was moderated by Pete Williams, a freelance writer and former USA Today sports writer and author of several books including The Draft: A Year Inside The NFL’s Search For Talent. Pete did a masterful job in bringing out the central themes of the panelists life and forestry experiences.
Following are quotes and highlights from the speakers. Discussion and interaction from the audience centered on certification, estate taxes, the family legacy of forests, and the importance of messaging and advocacy.
Landowner to Landowner Panel Speakers
Cinda Jones, President of W. D. Cowls, Inc. in Amherst, MA.
Cinda is a 9th generation landowner who has been active in the family business since the age of 10. Cinda had much to say about her varied experience of growing up in a family business rich in heritage. Cinda’s goals as President of Cowls are to diversify forestbased opportunities; optimize land management and use; and to become a land conservation leader. Under her management, Cowls has won numerous national land conservation awards.
Cinda jones, Chuck Leavell, Pete Williams, and Jeff Lageman
Jeff Lageman, NFL Professional Football Player
Jeff, who has an impressive resume in the National Football League is a relative newcomer to forestland ownership. This first round pick of the New York Jets had a 10-year career as a player and continues to be active in the Jacksonville Jaguar organization. After his career in the NFL, Jeff wanted a place to hunt and fish and get away from the hustle and bustle of his Jacksonville life. He also knew that he wanted to be able not only to enjoy the land, but use it so that it could help pay for itself. Living by the four “Fs” that have come to dictate his lifestyle: fishing, farming, forestry, and football, Jeff purchased property in Georgia and now successfully manages it as a tree farm.
Chuck Leavell, Keyboard Player for the Rolling Stones
Recognized as a talented and respected musician, Chuck Leavell’s accomplishments as a conservationist and forest landowner are equally impressive. After studying forestry by correspondence and doing much of his homework while riding a tour bus with the Fabulous Thunderbirds in the mid ‘80s, Leavell and wife Rose Lane White Leavell turned her family’s 2,200-acre plantation near Macon, GA, into what has become a textbook tree farm.
Like most family foresters, the Leavells manage their property for wildlife, recreation, timber, aesthetics, and other objectives. As comfortable on a tractor as a piano bench, over the last 20 years, Leavell has become not only a forest management expert, but also a spokesman for the conservation of family forestlands.