March 2024

Recognizing Women: Behind the Front Lines

While logging has been traditionally a “man’s world” there have always been a few women out in front, felling trees, running equipment, or running whole businesses. I would like to draw attention to the women who work behind the scenes in various supporting roles. We don’t have to look far to find that this is common, and almost typical. Women, often the wife of the main fellow whose name is on the truck door, are typically bookkeepers, office managers, or full partners in every sense. Sometimes they are the common sense in the partnership. “Do we really need that new machine right now?”

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Recognizing Women: Jenee Smith

“What brought Ray and I to the woods?” Jenee Smith ponders the question. Logging had been part of her husband Ray Brewster’s life from a young age, while Smith had grown up cutting trees, pulling brush, and splitting firewood with her six siblings. “As a baby, my mom would put me in a stroller and the sound of a chainsaw would put me to sleep. To this day, I can’t help but start yawning when I hear a chainsaw.”

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