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A retirement tribute to Wayne H. Gross, TAPPI President.

TAPPI President Wayne H. Gross, CAE, retired January 1, 2006, after serving the Association for over 30 years. Gross joined the TAPPI staff in 1974 and later served as director of meetings and exhibits, director of international operations, and executive director of the Pulp Chemicals Association. He left TAPPI in 1995 to lead the American Society of Mechanical Engineers' International Gas Turbine Institute. He was named TAPPI's sixth Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer in 1996. In 2004 his title was changed to TAPPI President.

Bringing the industry together for information sharing and education has been a hallmark of Gross's TAPPI career. He pioneered TAPPI's meetings and exhibits department and established the Association as the premier source for industry conferences and exhibits. Gross's focus on industry education began in the 1970s with the first TAPPI Seminars and continues today with TAPPI's active participation and support for the National Network for Pulp and Paper Technical Training (NPT2). He has also been involved with American Forest and Paper Association's Agenda 2020 initiative, particularly the Chief Technical Officers' forums.

Known for building partnerships that are beneficial to TAPPI members and the industry, Gross worked with the Association of Independent Corrugated Converters (AICC) to establish SuperCorrExpo[R], the largest corrugated machinery show in the Western Hemisphere, in 2000. Gross also worked with the Paper Industry Management Association (PIMA) to launch Solutions! for People, Processes, and Paper, the official publication of TAPPI and PIMA, in 2001.



Beginning in his role as director of international operations in the 1990s, Wayne Gross built a strong international presence for the Association by establishing relationships with industry leaders and heads of other pulp and paper associations throughout the world. Gross's commitment to the international arena has continued throughout his tenure as executive director and president. He has led numerous international study tours and is often invited to speak at international industry events. In addition, Gross serves as primary liaison with more than 30 technical and trade associations throughout the world.

Sharing a positive message about the pulp, paper, and converting industry with the public has always been important to Gross. He was instrumental in the development of Forests for Our Future, TAPPI's exhibit at Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. Forests For Our Future, which recently closed after a long run, introduced the science and technology of the forest products industry and explained how the forest products industry is protecting the future of our world's forests while providing the forest products the world needs. The exhibit opened in 1999 and was extended several times.


Under Gross's leadership in the 1980s and 1990s, TAPPI's meetings and exhibits department was recognized by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and the Council of Engineering and Scientific Society Executives (CESSE) as one of the nation's leading meetings and exhibits operations. His leadership and stewardship helped the Association build a nest egg of investments that have enabled TAPPI to better serve the industry over the years.

"We are so fortunate to have had a man like Wayne Gross on the TAPPI staff for the past 30 years" remarked TAPPI Chairman Willis J. Potts, Jr. "Wayne's loyalty, dedication, and outstanding service to TAPPI are to be commended and celebrated," Potts concluded.

Wayne Gross is a member of the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), the Council of Engineering and Scientific Society Executives (CESSE) and the Georgia Society of Association Executives (GSAE). He has served as chair of two different ASAE sections and as a member of the ASAE Board of Directors. He also served on the ASAE Executive Committee as vice chairman. In addition, he was a member of GSAE Board of Directors. Currently, he is a member of the CESSE Board of Directors. He was designated as ASAE Fellow in 1989 and a TAPPI Fellow in 1994. Gross was selected as the Outstanding Association Executive in Georgia in 1992.

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Title Annotation:ASSOCIATIONS
Author:Rooks, Alan
Publication:Solutions - for People, Processes and Paper
Date:Jan 1, 2006
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