“True Professionals of Arboriculture” Push Industry Innovation to Achieve Success

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Five arborists honored by the International Society of Arboriculture for 2014.

'A True Professional of Arboriculture establishes high expectations and an exceptional commitment to the best practices expected in our industry,' Mark Roberts, ISA President

Five arborists considered the best in their trade for protecting champion trees, encouraging industry certification, sharing best practices and promoting tree research worldwide, have been chosen by the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) as the 2014 class of “True Professionals of Arboriculture™.”

The guests of honor received special recognition on Monday, August 4th at the 90th annual ISA International Conference and Trade Show, August 2nd – 6th in Milwaukee. This year’s class of “True Professionals of Arboriculture” includes:

  •     Chris Ahlum (Columbus, Ohio)
  •     Andy Dahl (Iowa City, Iowa)
  •     Richard Gibney (Wading River, New York)
  •     Mark Hoenigman (Cleveland, Ohio)
  •     Steve Nimz (Honolulu, Hawaii)

The ceremony was hosted by ISA President Mark Roberts prior to the opening general session of the ISA conference.

“A True Professional of Arboriculture establishes high expectations and an exceptional commitment to the best practices expected in our industry,” explained the ISA President. “With every successful step taken by these arborists, there is increased visibility for our profession, the skills necessary to do the job well and the value and care of the world’s trees.”

Here’s a look at some of the accomplishments of this year’s “True Professionals of Arboriculture:”

  •     Maintains high standards of quality and expertise among employees, supporting them with safety and technical training seminars taught by national experts, and invests in the latest technology and equipment. (Ahlum)
  •     Encourages tree protection programs to save champion trees. Organized and planted a learning garden at University of Iowa to teach tree care and provide food for campus dining hall. (Dahl)
  •     Promotes ISA certification as a minimum requirement of contractors on the job and is an advocate for employees seeking ISA certification. Considered an expert in arboriculture and horticulture where engineers, architects and landscape architects seek his advice on industry practice. (Gibney)
  •     Draws researchers from around the world to test equipment and study new ideas at Biomechanics Research Weeks in Ohio. Hosts free training seminars in an effort to encourage best management practices with the next generation of professional arborists. (Hoenigman)
  •     Raises standards for arboriculture and landscaping industries in Hawaii. Led the call to require contractor’s licenses for tree care companies on the Islands. Helped establish ISA Certification programs in Hawaii. (Nimz)

ISA launched the “True Professionals of Arboriculture” recognition program in 2009 to increase public understanding of arboriculture and the professional skills of today’s arborists. Since that time, hundreds of nominations have been collected worldwide from the industry’s leading arborists and tree care professionals testifying to their positive impact in and around their communities.

This year’s ISA Awards Committee included John Ball (professor of forestry at South Dakota State University, Brookings, S.D.), SK Ganesan (deputy director of landscaping and arboriculture, National Parks Board, Singapore), Alan Jones (vice president and division manager, Bartlett Tree Experts, Afton, Va.), Lauren Lanphear (president, Forest City Tree Protection, South Euclid, Ohio, ISA Past President, 2007-09, and 2011 ISA “Award of Distinction” winner), Randy Lidkea (retired arborist, ISA committee member, St. Thomas, Ontario), Paul Revell (urban and community forestry manager, Virginia Department of Forestry, Charlottesville, Va.), Rip Tompkins (arborist and principal at ArborMaster, Willington, Conn.), and Philip van Wassenaer (president, Urban Forest Innovations, Inc., Mississauga, Ontario, and 2009 ISA “True Professional of Arboriculture”).

Profiles and case studies of the “True Professionals” will be featured on the ISA website at http://www.isa-arbor.com and highlighted in future ISA publications such as Arborist News.

About ISA    

The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA), headquartered in Champaign, Ill., U.S., is a nonprofit organization supporting tree care research and education around the world. To promote the importance of arboriculture, ISA manages the newly re-launched consumer education web site, http://www.treesaregood.org, which fulfills the association’s mission to help educate the public about the importance and value of proper tree care. Also, as part of ISA’s dedication to the care and preservation of shade and ornamental trees, it offers the only internationally-recognized certification program in the industry. For more information on ISA and Certified Arborists, visit http://www.isa-arbor.com.

Editor’s Note: Photos are available upon request. To arrange interviews, contact Julie Gaier at 262-786-5970 or julie(at)trg-marketing(dot)com.

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Julie Gaier
International Society of Arboriculture
(262) 786-5970
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