Thomas A. Lehtinen
Tom was born to Edward and Elsie Lehtinen in Biwabik, Minn., on February 5, 1948. He met his loving wife Judy at Aurora Hoyt Lakes High School, located in Aurora, Minn. The high school sweethearts were married 53 years and had three children. An avid scholar, Tom held a Masters in Business Administration from Northern Illinois University and a Bachelors in Forest Products Engineering from the University of Minnesota. His passion for wood science stemmed from his roots in northern Minnesota and adolescent summer employment working with wood pulp. His work in forest products and research development spanned 42 years, with a national and global span, awards, patents, and was an active member and speaker for the Forest Products Research Society. Tom worked and lived in the Republic of South Africa for 2 years, sharing his scientific expertise and enmeshed in the rugged culture of the local people, Drakensburg mountains, game reserves including Kruger Park, and braii (South African barbeque).