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About Us

Trevor Mitchell from the Ministry of Works and Development initiated formation of the Society which held its inaugural meeting on 7th November 1979. Also at the meeting were Dr Bryan Walford, Bob Gale, Murray Mitchel and Wally Dixon.

To foster and improve the design of timber structures through the advancement and dissemination of knowledge with a New Zealand focus.

Our Activities Include:

  • Dissemination of up-to-date information, technical or non-technical, related to timber design, manufacturing and construction processes and techniques. 

  • Publication of technical papers, including research reports, technical notes, reports on successful design and construction methods, design procedures and sample designs. 

  • Establishment and maintenance of direct communication and liaison with any other organisation with objectives similar to those of the Society. 

  • Promotion of applicable and relevant standards to ensure the economic and efficient use of timber buildings and other structures. 

  • Arrangement of conferences, seminars, webinars and symposia at international, national and local levels. 

  • Formation of branches and specialist groups. 

  • Initiation and maintenance of our support for research in timber design, manufacturing and construction processes and techniques. 

From early on TDS was aligned as a technical group of the Institute of Professional Engineers of New Zealand (IPENZ) (now Engineering New Zealand) as many members were engineers, however membership has always been open to other people with an interest in timber design such as architects and scientists.  

House logs

Past Presidents

Feb 2024 - Present

Lisa Oliver

Feb 2021 - Feb 2024

Daniel Moroder

Feb 2018 - Feb 2021

David Carradine

March 2016 - Feb 2018

David Reid

Feb 2013 - March 2016

Daniel Scheibmair

Feb 2010 - Feb 2013

Ross Davison

Feb 2007 - Feb 2010

Hugh Morris

Dec 2006 - Feb 2007

Andy Buchanan

May 2003 - Dec 2006

Ken McIntosh

2002 - May 2003

Pat Simperingham

1999 - 2002

Bryan Walford

1997 - 1998

Spencer Nicholls

1994 - 1996

Garry Tonks

1991 - 1993

Hank Bier

1988 - 1990

Andy Buchanan

1986 - 1987

Bob Gale


James Hutchison


Bryan Walford

1981 - 1983

John Webster

1978 - 1980

Trevor Mitchell

International Conferences hosted

1984 PTEC 1984 Pacific Timber Engineering Conference

1989 PTEC 1989 Pacific Timber Engineering Conference

1999 PTEC 1999 Pacific Timber Engineering Conference

2012 WCTE 2012 World Conference on Timber Engineering

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