ISA's 2016 “Awards of Distinction” Winners Celebrated for Global Contributions to Arboriculture

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Professors, researchers, authors, arborists and tree experts among those named to prestigious winner list

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“This year’s recipients represent advancements in the field of arboriculture through education and technology,” said de Gourét Litchfield, ISA board president. “They are dedicating their lives to the expansion and transfer of knowledge worldwide."

The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA), a world leader in tree research, education, and the promotion of the arboriculture profession, has recognized eleven recipients for the 2016 Awards of Distinction, sponsored by Bartlett Tree Experts.

The Awards of Distinction were presented Sunday, August 14, during the opening ceremony of the ISA’s 92nd Annual International Conference and Trade Show, held in Fort Worth, Texas. The 2016 winners include:

  • Dr. Ed Gilman — Award of Merit (Gainesville, Florida, United States)
  • Sharon Lilly – Award of Merit (Acworth, Georgia, United States)
  • Dr. David Lonsdale — R.W. Harris Author’s Citation (Bristol, United Kingdom)
  • Dr. Tomas Martinez-Trinidad — Early-Career Scientist Award (Texcoco, Mexico)
  • Dr. Justin Morgenroth — Early-Career Scientist Award (Christchurch, New Zealand)
  • Dr. Jennifer Juzwik — L.C. Chadwick Award for Arboricultural Research (Saint Paul, Minnesota, United States)
  • Dr. Eric Wiseman — Alex. L. Shigo Award for Excellence in Arboricultural Education (Christiansburg, Virginia, United States)
  • George Gonzalez — Award of Achievement (San Pedro, California, United States)
  • Paul Revell – Award of Achievement-posthumously (Charlottesville, Virginia, United States)
  • Melissa LeVangie — Millard F. Blair Exceptional Contribution to Practical Arboriculture Award (Petersham, Massachusetts, United States)
  • Dr. Adrina Bardekjian — Honorary ISA Membership (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
  • Akinlemibola Oluwasina — Honorary ISA Membership (Eberswalde, Brandenburg, Germany)

“This year’s recipients represent the many advancements in the field of arboriculture through education and technology,” said de Gourét Litchfield, ISA board president. “These men and women are dedicating their lives to expanding knowledge and supporting the transfer of information around the world. It is specially heartening for me personally that we recognize these award recipients from a diversity of countries, a broad spectrum of ages and with equal recognition to men and woman – indeed, a true reflection of the membership that we serve.”

Some highlights of this group’s accomplishments include:

  • Impacted the way mature trees are pruned and the how nursery stock is produced (Gilman)
  • Instrumental in the development of numerous educational products for the arboriculture industry, including authoring the study guide for ISA Certified Arborists. (Lilly)
  • Focused on tree hazards and risk assessment for the protection of public and private landowners for more than 30 years (Lonsdale)
  • Improved the arboriculture trade in Mexico through numerous written publications and graduate level course instruction (Martinez-Trinidad)
  • Introduced urban forestry in to the curriculum at the University of Canterbury (Morgenroth)
  • Conducted and produced some of the most influential research on tree diseases, including oak wilt (Juzwik)
  • Dedicated to arboriculture education at Virginia Tech, and research work, especially Urban Forestry 2020 – a project to help determine the state of urban forestry and the future of the profession. (Wiseman)
  • Oversaw the maintenance of 700,000 street trees, and more than 300 acres of landscaped medians in the City of Los Angeles (Gonzales)
  • Conceptualized and helped develop Urban Forest Strike Teams (UFST), a group of Certified Arborists responding to assisting communities following a natural disaster; provided training at Virginia Department of Forestry headquarters for professionals wishing to become certified (Revell)
  • Organized annual Women’s Tree Climbing Workshop focusing on safety and training for women entering the industry (LeVangie)
  • Incorporated photography and film with literature for more powerful artistic expression reaching multiple audiences in arboriculture industry (Bardekjian)
  • Advocated for awareness and action regarding environmental restoration and the effects of deforestation on climate change (Oluwasina)

“Recognizing accomplishments like these not only tells the recipients we value their work, but also encourages others to pursue such work,” added Robert Bartlett Jr., chairman and CEO of Bartlett Tree Experts. “The more people we can inspire to make a difference in arboriculture, the better our industry will be. With that in mind, we’re proud to offer our continued support to the Awards of Distinction.”

ISA, an organization of more than 30,000 members and credential holders worldwide, has been honoring members and industry professionals with the Awards of Distinction since 1963. This year’s categories recognize candidates in such areas as research, education, and advancing the best practices of proper tree care in the industry. The winners are selected by the ISA Awards Committee, a diverse group of experts in arboriculture including university professors, commercial and utility arborists, company owners, and trainers. After selection, award recipients and are approved by ISA’s Board of Directors.

For a video playlist on each of the Award of Distinction winners, visit

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 consumer education web site,, 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

About Bartlett Tree Experts
The F.A. Bartlett Tree Expert Company was founded in 1907 by Francis A. Bartlett and is the world’s leading scientific tree and shrub care company. The organization’s current chairman, Robert A. Bartlett Jr., represents the third generation of Bartlett family management. Bartlett has locations in 27 U.S. states, Canada, Ireland, and Great Britain. Services include pruning, insect and disease management, fertilization and soil care, cabling and bracing, tree lightning protection systems, and tree and stump removal. Its corporate offices are located in Stamford, Connecticut. To find out more, visit the company’s web site at or call 1-877-BARTLETT (227-8538).

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Julie Gaier
The Ritterbusch Group
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