Northern Ontario Business —EACOM Timber Corporation has been recognized for its work in the Timmins area with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Timmins Chamber of Commerce.

The forest products company was one of 16 businesses celebrated during the organization’s annual Nova Business Excellence Awards, broadcast virtually on Aug. 13.

Founded in 1919, the Timmins sawmill processes 550,000 cubic metres of pine, spruce, and balsam logs annually, producing 160 million board feet of lumber.

It’s been damaged by fire at least four times in the facility’s history, most recently in 2014, while still recovering from a 2012 blaze that caused $20 million in damage and closed the mill for a year and a half.

Though it’s changed hands multiple times since its founding, EACOM has owned and operated the facility since 2010.

In the last decade, the company has invested more than $42 million to modernize the facilities, making technological upgrades and adding state-of-the-art equipment, which has increased performance by 23 percent while generating energy efficiencies of 30 percent.

Described by the company as “one of the most competitive wood products manufacturing facilities in Eastern Canada,” the mill employs 150 workers and supports 215 jobs in woodlands operations and hundreds more via vendors, contractors, and haulers.

Through the decades, EACOM has also been a dependable community partner.

More recently, the company established an ongoing partnership with Northern College to help provide learning, teaching and research opportunities in the forestry sector, including training students in the college’s industrial millwright, heavy equipment mechanic, and instrumentation technician programs.

To mark its centenary in 2019, EACOM donated lumber to the City of Timmins to build a pavilion for the Mountjoy Farmers Market, located across the river from the mill.

This past April, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the company donated more than half of its supply of N95 masks to the local medical community to help meet a need faced by health-care workers.

“We recognize that global and local supply chains have been challenged during the COVID-19 crisis and that the medical and first responder communities are facing shortages. It is our privilege to share what supplies we can all the while ensuring that our employees are properly protected,” EACOM president-CEO Kevin Edgson said of the donation.

“We operate in tightly knit communities who have always come together to support each other in times of need, and this is no different”.

Recipients of this year’s Nova Awards were selected from a slate of more than 45 finalists by a panel of six community judges.

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