MDC names La Plata man Central Region Logger of the Year

News from the region
Published Date

Columbia, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) has named Joni Yoder as the 2022 Central Region Logger of the Year. Yoder owns Yoder Logging out of La Plata, and he and his crew have worked closely with MDC staff from both Central and Northeast Regions.

“Joni regularly demonstrates his expert knowledge of sustainable timber harvesting operations,” said MDC Forester Bob Rives. “The fundamental skill that highlights Joni’s abilities is his understanding of skid trail layouts.”

“Skid trails are frequently used paths for dragging felled trees or logs to a landing area. Skid trail layout is critical to ensuring a sustainable and efficient logging job, as it directly influences the amount of residual damage and soil disturbance that occurs from skidding. Yoder’s keen eye for reading topography and his familiarity with his equipment combine to create a skid trail system that is often a textbook example of the skill.”

MDC Forest Products Program Supervisor Mike Morris oversees the logger of the year awards and says Yoder is exactly what you want from a professional logger in Missouri.

“He takes care to protect the natural resources,” said Morris. “He also recognizes the value of proper training and safety, which is another reason why his work rises to the top.”

As part of his award, Yoder received a framed certificate from MDC and a protective gear package donated by longtime partner Crader Distributing of Marble Hill.

MDC partners with Crader Distributing to give annual awards to loggers who have demonstrated outstanding performance and good working relationships with landowners and foresters. Loggers are recognized for minimizing damage to natural resources and using best management techniques that preserve Missouri’s forested lands for generations to come.