The final stage of bleaching process leaves a white pulp at the Flambeau River Papers mill. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
Butch Johnson, CEO of Flambeau River Papers in Park Falls, WI, stands among the rows of cut logs ready to made into paper. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
A stand of towering aspen trees hover over the Chequamegon National Forest in northern Wisconsin. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
Phillip Thums, owner of Phil Thums Harvesting, operates a cut-to-length processor saw which quickly cuts trees. Thums was working on harvesting a select section of trees in the Chequamegon National Forest in northern Wisconsin. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
D.J. Aderman, president for Futurewood Corp., talks on his cell phone while standing on top of a freshly cut tree stump in the Chequamegon National Forest. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
Mike Ziembo, an owner and operator for Phil Thums Harvesting, stands next to a forwarder, which picks up cut logs. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
City of Park Falls Mayor Thomas Ratzlaff is also a color technician at the Flambeau River Papers mill in Park Falls, WI. He's worked at the mill for 33 years. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
The wood chip conveyor leads to the pulp mill at the Flambeau River Papers mill in Park Falls, WI. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
Employees at Flambeau River Papers work on cutting rolls of what will be file folders. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
Rich Podrez (far left), a back tender at Flambeau River Papers, works to secure a large roll of paper before moving it to the shipping or converting facility. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
The Flambeau River Papers mill is seen with the Flambeau River in the foreground. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.
A paper roll spins with fresh paper at the Flambeau River Papers mill. Image by Mike De Sisti. USA, 2012.

While the Wisconsin paper industry struggles, the result of new technologies like tablets and e-readers, a few local innovators try to keep it afloat. Butch Johnson made the bold move to buy the Flambeau River Papers mill, saving the town of Park Falls from a loss of over 300 jobs.

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Faced with the devastating twin threats of digital and China, can a critical Wisconsin industry survive?

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