Moore to leave forest and paper group next summer

W. Henson Moore, a former Republican congressman from Louisiana, announced yesterday that he plans to retire as president of the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) next August.

Moore, who also served as deputy chief of staff to then-President George H.W. Bush, has directed the association since 1995. He represented Louisiana’s 6th District from 1975 to 1987.

The AF&PA represents more than 200 companies and has an annual budget of $30 million. During the last election cycle, the group’s PAC contributed nearly $150,000 to federal candidates.

Moore joined the AF&PA at a critical time for the association and the industry. A merger of paper and forest-products associations led to the creation of the AF&PA; the merger was driven at least in part by new global pressures, which had forced forest-product and paper companies to consolidate during that decade.

Moore said in a May interview with The Hill that he felt pressure to cut costs at the AF&PA. After commissioning a study by a top consulting firm, Moore reduced the group’s budget from $40 million, in part, by trimming staff from 200 to 150 employees. He also implemented a system that itemized lobbying costs so companies only paid for advocacy the group did on issues they cared about.

Because of the budget cuts and revised dues structure, the AF&PA has not increased its membership fees for the past eight years.

The association announced it would begin a search for Moore’s replacement.

“By the time I depart I will have been here over eleven and a half years,” Moore said in a statement. “It’s time for me to stand down and let somebody else take it from here.”