Paul Winistorfer, professor and department head of wood science and forest products at Virginia Tech, has been elected president of the Forest Products Society (FPS). He was installed as president of the national professional organization at its recent annual meeting held in Bellevue, Washington.

Winistorfer has been a member of FPS since 1976 and has held various positions in the organization. Recently, he was also appointed to the board of directors of WoodLinks U.S.A., Inc., an industry education partnership program.

In another round of honors, Virginia Tech's student chapter of FPS took top place in the national timber bridge design competition. The students placed first in most innovative design, second in best deck, and third in most aesthetic design. The other competitors were from civil engineering programs across America.

Each team had to design, construct, and test its bridge on its home campus and then submit documentation of its activities and results to a panel of judges for review. Research associate Dan Cumbo said, " The arch bridge was designed to minimize the use of metal by using adhesives and wood based composite products." The students' entry won over $1, 200 in award prizes.

Virginia Tech's department of wood science and forest products is a leading North American program in student education, cutting-edge research, and service to the wood-using industry. Winistorfer is an expert in the field of radiation density research, wood structure, identification, and wood-based composites. More information on the program at the department of wood science and forest products is located on the web at

The Forest Products Society is one of the oldest organizations serving professionals and the industry in the field of wood science and forest products. FPS consists of 14 regional sections, and chapters that operate with the voluntary input and effort of members who conduct technical meetings and other programs of regional interest. FPS supports 18 student chapters at universities in North America, which have educational and degree programs in wood science and forest products.

Written by Hilary Fussell, Public Affairs Assistant