August 22 – 25, 2018

Georgia World Congress Center | Atlanta, GA| USA


Free Product Costing Software for Small Woodshops


Thursday, August 25th from 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM

Session Code: BMG4

Location: B312 (located in Building B - Level 3)

Presented by: Virginia Tech

Speakers: Urs Buehlmann, Professor: Virginia Tech; Jeff Palmer, IT Specialist: US Forest Service; Jan Wiedenbeck, Team Leader/Research Forest Products Technologist: US Forest Service and Keith Atherholt, President: Lewis Lumber Products, Inc.
This 90 minute workshop will include industry speakers explaining the basic concepts of product costing, why product costing is of critical importance for industry participants and how a free software developed by Virginia Tech and the US Forest Service with support from the Wood Components Manufacturers Association (WCMA) can help small businesses to reliably estimate their product costs and produce winning quotes.

About the Speakers:  


Urs Buehlmann: Professor, Virginia Tech Department of Sustainable Biomaterials, focuses on manufacturing systems and on assessing industry competitiveness. Urs has given special focus to the impact of foreign competition on the wood products industry and its relationship with the U.S. housing market. He practices and promotes Lean Principles as a way to improve business results.

Urs has more than 15 years of experience working in industry, including serving as General Manager of Enkeboll Designs, Carson CA.




Jeff Palmer is an information technology specialist with the U.S. Forest Service, Northern Research Station, in Princeton, WV. He received a B.S. in business management and computer science from Bluefield State College in Bluefield, WV. He joined the Princeton, WV research team in 1991. Jeff has been involved in the design and then led the development of several management tools for primary and secondary wood products manufacturers.




Jan Wiedenbeck is a Research Forest Products Technologist and Team Leader with the Northern Research Station of the USDA Forest Service located in Princeton, West Virginia. She joined the Forest Service in 1992. She received her bachelor’s degree in Forestry from the University of Michigan and her Masters and PhD. degrees from Virginia Tech in Wood Science and Forest Products. Prior to graduate school, Jan worked for 6 years in forest industry in Louisiana and Mississippi. Jan is a Past President of the Forest Products Society and former Editor-in-Chief of the Forest Products Journal.

Her research focuses on improving efficiency in the manufacture of solid hardwood products, on improving our understanding of the quality requirements of different hardwood processing sectors, on learning how silvicultural treatments and management systems impact quality attributes, and the potential utility of non-destructive evaluation of trees and logs for enhanced decision making in managing multi-use forests.




Keith D. Atherholt is a life long Pennsylvania resident. Born in Darby, Pa and raised in Aston, Pa (Delaware County). Currently resides in Montoursville (Lycoming County) & married (35 years). He has two children; a daughter and son. Keith is a 1979 graduate of Pennsylvania State University with a B.S. degree in Forest Products. Upon graduation he worked as a salesperson from 1980 until 1991 in a Hardwood Distribution Company. The sales territory consisted of most of PA, customers were secondary wood processing companies (cabinet, furniture, & millwork).

From 1991-present- joined Dwight Lewis Lumber Co., Inc. – Williamsport Division as General Manager. In 1995, formed a new corporation named Lewis Lumber Products, Inc. Since becoming president and partners with Marc and Mel Lewis, have remained as such. Lewis Lumber Products is a Hardwood Distribution and Dimension Company. They currently sell products in a 250 mile radius of Williamsport PA and reach the secondary wood processing companies servicing the customer with their own fleet of trucks. We sell throughout the US on occasion. Currently they have 37 employees and generate over 10 million in annual sales volume. They process through about 5 million board feet of hardwood each year and that is comprised of 36 different species. However, 80% of our volume is in Cherry, Red Oak, Hard Maple, Red Maple, and Poplar (all native to PA). About ½ of our raw material comes from our parent company Dwight Lewis Lumber Co., Inc.