00:31:03 - 00:35:04 Career
career, satisfaction, challenges, projects; Gramala, David, national forest, resources, wood utilization; McNatt, J. Dobbin, mission
Okay, so at Forest Products Lab what did you find to be most satisfying about what you were working on and alternately what did you find to be most challenging in terms of projects or issues that arose while you worked there?
Well the thing that I enjoyed the most and I think at the time we had, there seemed to be fair amount of good young engineers there that were ambitious, wanted to take on I think challenging projects. Some of them, and at the risk of omitting the names of the few that I'm sure should be included, but Dave Gromala was there, he more a structures guy, Joe Murphy, Ted Laufenberg, Steve Loehnertz when he came, was a really good engineer. And like I said I'm sure there were some others, but I think there were a handful of young good engineers that wanted to do exciting projects, ambitious projects, and I thought that was a real satisfying thing. Oh, Joe Jung, another guy. That wanted to basically change the way things were done at the Lab. I think also the nature of the of the work, the mission of the Forest Products Lab, which was to extend and make more valuable the nation's resources, the nation's forest resources, which is why I was part of the Forest Service, to effectively utilize this material.
I think at heart we were all very much conservationists well before that became a real popular term. And the projects that we liked to work on were in line with that, for example, this powered backup roll it allowed us to peel down to a smaller core size, which produced significantly more valuable veneer out of a typical log, which means that you are going to get more product with cutting down less logs. It also was more particularly suitable for plantation grown lumber where you start off with smaller logs, where it's become even more important to get a better yield and get down to a smaller core size. So I think the nature of the work, one of the things that I personally found satisfying was that we were taking the raw material and making better utilization of it, whether it was by producing veneer or some of the other guys that I mentioned were working on chips, you know particle board lumber, oriented strand board lumber, things like that. So that I think was pretty satisfying.
I think another thing that was kind of nice was, in a way, was that there was a pretty congenial group of people to work with. I know my work unit was a very congenial group of people to work with, had a good relationship with all the guys who were more particleboard guys, but we had both particleboard---we were in reconstituted wood products. So Ron Jokerst was a good guy to work with, Dobbin McNatt was a good guy to work with. And there were some other people in there that were good to work with. Joe Jung was in that unit, he was a real bright guy, nice guy to work with. He started about the same time that I did and left I think a little before me. Those were the things that were positives.