Eighty-nine years has passed since the L.W. Cummings and Son Lumber Company skidded its first logs by horse to a steam engine powered mill in Troy. For more than half of that time Roy Cummings Jr., the company founder’s grandson, has worked in the business.
“My grandfather had retired by the time I got out of the Air Force so I never had the opportunity to work with him,” Roy says.
At the age of 24, Roy joined his father, Roy Sr., later becoming president of the company. The two continued to expand the lumber business, producing premium hard wood products using sustainable forestry practices.
Roy explained, “Cummings Lumber and Barefoot Pellets plans have always focused on being the best steward possible for our forest and the forest of our suppliers. We are diligent on finding and implementing ways to get all the yield possible from every tree that we harvest. We are blessed with renewable forest land that will continue to grow faster than they are harvested.”
Relationships are a vital part of the growth and success of the business, the owner added, stating, “We have taken great pride in our employees, who have made the success of the company a part of their lives also. In addition, we have long standing ties with our landowners and customers. Working together, we provide the superior eco – friendly products in demand.”
Per the company’s website, 100 percent of incoming logs are harvested and processed by people that embrace sustainable, environmentally sound practices. As a result, Roy and his team have made a lot of friends in the business, traveling as far as China to share their knowledge, products, and services.
The company will continue its charitable history, supporting community through the Troy Volunteer Fire Department, Ambulance Corps, Lions Club, Hospice, and Guthrie Troy Community Hospital, and others.
Roy continued, “We want to make this an attractive and safe place to live. We see contributions to our hospitals, schools and our community as helping to attract people to Troy. It’s very important to our family.”
Giving recognition to employees for their service is also a long-standing tradition of the company. Roy Jr. was honored on Nov. 7, 2018, his 50-year work anniversary at Cummings Lumber Inc. Leader, friend, and inspiration were part of the congratulatory notes to a colleague and mentor.
What’s next? The third generation leader explained, “Rather than retired I would say that I’m in the back seat, watching the business operations of our team. It is a great feeling to know that the business is in such capable hands for the future. I’m very part time. The truth is they don’t really need me but I like to keep up with current events. Also, I’m in contact with many friends from the industry about my age, which is very enjoyable.”
Today, Scott Cummings, the founder’s great grandson, directs the company. Looking ahead for future generations, Roy sees great growth in pellets, a renewable energy resource.
He stated, “Cummings Lumber will continue its environmental commitment, with landowner goals being at the root of every tree we harvest.”
Roy shares his father’s business priorities, stating, “Start with a good harvest on a landowner’s forest. Then maximize the value to the property owner now and in the future. Always, we are loyal to our customers, providing them with a high yielding product. We can sum it up in two words, ‘be square.’”