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Join us in Cleveland, Ohio

November 20-21, 2019

2019 Conference Agenda

date  Wednesday, Nov 20, 2019

  • 7:00 a.m. –5:00 p.m. Registration Opens
  • 7:30–8:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast With Exhibitors included with conference registration
  • 8:30–10:10 a.m. Welcome to Cleveland!

    Join Dan Lambe for his annual challenge speech and welcome addresses from national, state, and local partners.

    Dan Lambe, Arbor Day Foundation | other speakers TBD

    The Cleveland Tree Plan: A Case Study in Capacity-Building

    A discussion of the past, present, and future of urban forestry in Cleveland, Ohio, as told by three partners active in the development of the Cleveland Tree Plan. Special attention will be paid to the roles of government, nonprofit, and private sector partners in creating the plan and the subsequent formation and still-evolving structure of a large, diverse collaborative needed to implement the plan: the Cleveland Tree Coalition.

    Sandra Albro, Holden Forests & Gardens | Matt Gray, City of Cleveland | Joe Gregory, Davey Resource Group, Inc.
    Sandra Albro leads an interdisciplinary team of city government and nonprofit organizations in the development and execution of novel urban greening strategies for stormwater management and neighborhood revitalization on urban vacant lots in Cleveland, OH; Gary, IN; and Buffalo, NY. She focuses on multi-agency cooperation and process innovations that promote systemic adoption of green infrastructure. Sandra is active in the community on topics related to urban greening and serves as co-chair of the Cleveland Tree Coalition.

    Matthew Gray is the chief of sustainability for the City of Cleveland, responsible for advising city leaders on policies related to sustainability and for oversight of the Office of Sustainability. Matt coordinates the Sustainable Cleveland 2019 initiative, is responsible for implementing the Cleveland Climate Action Plan and the Sustainable Cleveland Municipal Action Plan, and for reducing the city's ecological footprint with solutions that also save the city money. Matt's Office of Sustainability was the lead City agency on the establishment of the Cleveland Tree Plan.

    Joe Gregory is an operations manager for Davey Resource Group. Joe is a planner and urban forester by training and has coordinated numerous community forestry projects throughout the U.S. He writes urban and community forestry management plans, benefit analyses, and urban forest master plans for municipal and nonprofit partners and led the Davey Resource Group team that authored urban forest master plans for Pittsburgh, PA, and Cleveland, OH.

  • 10:10–10:40 a.m. Beverage and Networking Break With Exhibitors
  • 10:40–11:15 a.m. Arboriculture Vocational Reentry Program: Building a Workforce Pipeline

    This presentation will highlight an inspiring, evolving program that trains inmates at state correctional institutions (SCI) in arboriculture. Piloted in fall 2017 at a Pennsylvania SCI, the Arboriculture Vocational Reentry Program continues to expand and adapt. It's a unique collaboration between the PA Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources, PA Dept. of Corrections, and Penn State Extension that is successfully connecting reentrants with jobs in the tree care industry. But the goals go beyond simply connecting ex-offenders with jobs.

    Shea Zwerver, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation & Natural Resources | Tyler Stevenson, Ohio DNR–Division of Forestry
    Intrigued by the human-nature relationship from early on, Shea Zwerver pursued a BA in Psychology with a minor in Landscape Studies from Smith College and a MES from the University of Pennsylvania. Over the last 2½ years, Shea has worked on Pennsylvania's urban forestry program, TreeVitalize, with Pennsylvania's Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources, working on projects that build awareness of the value of trees, promote environmental stewardship, and address challenges communities face in urban forestry.

    Tyler Stevenson is the state urban forester for the Ohio DNR–Division of Forestry, based in Columbus, Ohio.


    Managing the Forest, Not the Trees: Adaptive Management for Oak Wilt in Austin, Texas

    The City of Austin, Texas, is recalibrating their oak wilt management program to focus on forest health by leveraging private sector capacity, increasing public access to natural resource data through GIS technology, and offering diverse modes of communication. In this presentation you'll learn about their process for change, new partnerships and tools that were launched in 2018, and what lessons have been learned to date.

    April Rose, City of Austin
    April Rose monitors Austin's forest heath and engages with stakeholders to develop strategies that enhance urban forest resilience. She has prior experience in consulting arboriculture, nonprofit leadership, and municipal forestry.


    Toward Climate-Resilient Cities: Measuring the Heat Mitigation of Urban Trees

    Tree planting is a common urban climate adaptation strategy, but the amount of canopy needed to counteract the higher temperatures associated with impervious surfaces is unclear. We used a bicycle-mounted measurement system to quantify the interaction of canopy cover and impervious surface cover on urban air temperature. Daytime temperature was substantially reduced with greater canopy cover (>40%), especially on the hottest days. Learn how these results can guide strategies for increasing tree cover to mitigate urban heat.

    Carly Ziter, Concordia University
    Carly Ziter is an assistant professor of urban ecology in the Biology Department at Concordia University. Her research program centers on the ecosystem services concept as a lens through which to ask ecological questions related to sustainability, policy, and practice. Her recent work falls primarily into three themes: (1) measuring the effects of current and historical land-use on urban ecosystem service provision; (2) understanding biodiversity-ecosystem service relationships; (3) connecting urban ecology and planning for more sustainable cities.

  • 11:25 a.m. –12:00 p.m. From Despair to Hope : Recovering from Asian Longhorned Beetle in Worcester, Massachusetts

    Worcester Tree Initiative (WTI) has worked for 10 years with city, state, and federal government partners to help the city of Worcester, MA, and surrounding towns recover from the nation's largest infestation of Asian longhorned beetle. With roots in the community now, it seems invasive pests are only the beginning of the community forest's problems. Development and neglect are a serious threat. Learn how WTI (now a program of Tower Hill Botanic Garden) is working to plant, steward, and advocate for trees in every part of this city and beyond.

    Derek Lirange, Worcester Tree Initiative, a Program of Tower Hill Botanic Garden
    Derek Lirange came to work for Worcester Tree Initiative in May 2013 after graduating from UMASS-Amherst with a degree in Urban Forestry. As the community forester for WTI, Derek spends much of his time coordinating youth employees in the summer months and community volunteers throughout the year to plant trees, care for trees and understand the value of trees in our urban community.


    Urban Forestry Tools for Climate Mitigation and Health

    America's urban and community forests already contribute significantly to climate mitigation, but they could do even more. This presentation introduces a new collaboration of experts in urban forestry, climate science, and public health to develop benchmarks, tools, and best practices for optimizing urban forests for climate mitigation and health resilience.

    Ian Leahy, American Forests | Dr. David Nowak & Leslie Brandt, USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station
    Ian Leahy has overseen American Forests' urban programs since 2014. He developed the award-winning Community ReLeaf program through a change model that helps cities nationwide build capacity for managing their urban forests. He also led development of the Vibrant Cities Lab and launched Tree Equity and climate-health initiatives. Prior to American Forests, Ian served as the state urban and community forestry coordinator for the District of Columbia. He studied natural resources management and city planning at Cornell University.

    Dave Nowak is a senior scientist and team leader with the USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station in Syracuse, New York. His research investigates urban forest structure, health, and change and its effect on human health and environmental quality. He has authored more than 300 publications and leads teams developing the i-Tree software suite that quantifies the benefits and values from vegetation. Dr. Nowak holds a Ph.D. from the University of California-Berkeley.

    Leslie Brandt is a climate change specialist providing general outreach and support for climate change activities in the USDA Forest Service Eastern Region, working to bridge climate change research with forest management. As coordinator for the Central Hardwoods Climate Change Response Framework project, Leslie developed an ecosystem vulnerability assessment for Illinois, Indiana, and Missouri. The Urban Forestry Climate Change Response Framework works with communities across the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Midwest that are interested in adapting their urban forest management to climate change.

  • 11:25 a.m. –12:00 p.m. Lightning Round: Green Jobs session includes four 7-minute presentations on a single topic

    Creating Pathways to Green Careers

    The need for young people entering green jobs has never been greater. Project Learning Tree® seeks to be part of the solution to exposing young people to rewarding green jobs with its newest learning guide titled Green Jobs in Green Spaces. Participants will be introduced to this resource for formal and informal educators working with young adults. Participants will receive a complimentary copy of the guide and will explore its use with youth development programs such as Scouts and 4-H.

    Esther Cowles, Sustainable Forestry Initiative, Inc.
    Esther Cowles is responsible for the organizational management, strategic planning, and governance of Project Learning Tree (PLT), the environmental education program of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative. Previously, Esther worked as a senior research associate with PEER Associates, specializing in strategic planning, organizational development, collaborative processes, and program evaluation. Esther has also worked as an educator, program designer, and executive director in the nonprofit sector for more than 25 years, with 17 years at New Hampshire PLT.


    Collaborating With Partners to Put 'Community' Into Our Community Forestry Program

    The Onondaga Earth Corps (OEC) has grown to become a significant provider of urban forestry services in the City of Syracuse. OEC plants and prunes trees, maintains rain gardens, and recently led the public input process for the City's Urban Forest Master Plan. This presentation will discuss the state of Syracuse's urban forest and how OEC has evolved to help the city address urban forest management needs. Most important is how OEC helps extend the benefits of urban forests to all citizens in an inclusive manner through its programs.

    TBD, Onondaga Earth Corps

    Tree Corps: A Case Study in Community Forestry

    In 2018, Holden Forests & Gardens launched Tree Corps, a 19-week arboriculture workforce development program. The program provides city residents a paid tree care training opportunity while simultaneously taking action to reverse the urban forest's canopy loss and support the 2015 Cleveland Tree Plan. The unique program design includes more than thirty community partners and a balance of instructional training and hands-on application. The presentation will share lessons learned, tools, and best practices in community forestry partnership.

    Diana Sette, Holden Forests & Gardens
    Diana Sette is the Tree Corps manager at Holden Forests & Gardens, overseeing a unique 19-week arboriculture workforce development program that blends hands-on training with classroom curriculum in partnership with numerous public-private organizations. Diana is an ISA Certified Arborist currently pursuing Tree Risk Assessment Qualification and is a certified permaculture designer and teacher with a dynamic background in agroecology, community engagement, and holistic education.


    Career Pathways Toolkit: Preparing Tomorrow's Urban Forestry Workforce

    Tree care companies and public agencies struggle to fill green job openings yet rarely engage those who could use these opportunities most: low-income, diverse populations. Tree Equity: Career Pathways seeks to close this urban forestry labor shortage by supporting preemployment programs designed to prepare tomorrow's green workforce and helping tree industry employers attract and retain employees. This session will introduce a free national toolkit to share best practices for running successful tree care crews, tree corps, and other programs.

    Sarah Anderson, American Forests
    Sarah Lillie Anderson leads American Forests' Tree Equity Programs, which equips urban forestry stakeholders to build and retain a diverse, qualified and representative workforce. Previously, she ran Lillie Leaf Solutions, LLC, a firm that helped urban greening stakeholders address equity, access, inclusion and justice in their work. Sarah's experience includes developing and administering national urban forestry programs, managing constituent engagement for urban tree and city park associations, and facilitating local and national conferences.

  • 12:00–1:30 p.m. Boxed Lunch included with conference registration
  • 12:30–4:30 p.m. #GreenCityBlueLake One of Cleveland's greatest natural assets is Lake Erie, part of the largest system of fresh surface water in the world -- the Great Lakes! The City of Cleveland and the surrounding region have supported programs that lead to cleaner discharges into the lake, with green infrastructure methods receiving new enthusiasm.

    The Forest City, From Cradle to Grave From its earliest days, Cleveland has been called "The Forest City." This field experience will highlight the places and spaces that give the city this nickname. Visit many of Cleveland's historic and visionary landscapes with local leaders who have worked to maintain them from a century or more ago through today.

    Neighborhoods, Naturally! The work to grow tree canopy in Cleveland involves more than just city departments and nonprofit partners. It includes neighbors and a diverse set of partners, matched to the interests and needs of the community. This field experience will feature the local partnerships conducting tree-related work in three Cleveland neighborhoods.

    Green Jobs in Green Spaces Urban and community forestry -- like many other fields in forestry and sustainability -- is facing shortages of new people entering the workforce. Many organizations are striving to promote green professions and recruit new participants. Project Learning Tree® is contributing to these efforts with a new educational guide designed for adults working with high school-aged learners.

    A River Runs Through It In 1969, the Cuyahoga River in downtown Cleveland caught fire due to persistent industrial pollution, spawning national attention and legislation that ultimately became the Clean Water Act. Fifty years later, the river is experiencing a renaissance, forming an environmental and cultural center for downtown Cleveland. Join us for a walking tour of riverfront cultural touchstones and new initiatives for green infrastructure.

    Urban Wood From Coast to Coast Cities, entrepreneurs, and advocates are leading a variety of initiatives to ensure that when urban trees are removed, there are opportunities for the material to be put to good use rather than entering the waste stream. This interactive session will include information and project examples from Baltimore, Maryland; throughout California; and the Upper Midwest region. Participants are invited to bring information about their own efforts to support information exchange and insights into lessons learned.
  • 5:30–7:30 p.m. Partners in Community Forestry Networking Event included with conference registration

date  Thursday, Nov 21, 2019

  • 7:15–8:15 a.m. Listening Session: New i-Tree Features You Might Need Join the developers of i-Tree for a fast-paced tour of recently added features!
    Mike Binkley, et.al., The Davey Institute
  • 7:30–8:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast With Exhibitors included with conference registration
  • 8:30–10:00 a.m. Welcome to Cleveland!
    TBD

    Why are Trees Important? A Review of the Research About Urban Trees and Human Health

    Nearly 40 years of research shows that nearby nature in cities contributes to public health and human wellness. The urban forestry community is aware of the studies and findings. Yet to date, no research review has focused on the specific human health benefits provided by city trees, canopy, and woodlands. A collaboration across organizations in Canada and the U.S. has collected 182 articles about trees and health and offers insights for both future management and research concerning trees in cities.

    Dr. Kathleen Wolf, University of Washington | Sharon Lam, Ontario Climate Consortium, Canada
    Dr. Kathleen Wolf is a research social scientist at the College of the Environment, University of Washington in Seattle. Kathy conducts social science research to understand the human dimensions of urban forestry and urban ecosystems. She aims to discover, understand, and communicate human behavior and benefits as people experience nature in cities and towns. In recent years, her research and science delivery has focused on human health. She is also interested in how scientific information can be integrated into local government policy and planning.

    Sharon Lam holds a masters degree in public affairs and currently works with the Ontario Climate Consortium Secretariat (OCC), which was established in 2011 as a centre of expertise, providing research and analysis services to municipalities, conservation authorities, and the broader public sector concerning the causes and implications of climate change. Sharon's analysis and communication portfolio includes issues of urban forestry, such as invasive species (e.g., Emerald Ash Borer, gypsy moth, Asian longhorn beetle), northward migration of trees, and heat island effects.


    Trees Rx: The Human Health Connection

    A partnership between Park Rx America, the USDA Forest Service, and the Washington, D.C., Urban Forestry Division is expanding outreach on the health benefits of trees by creating a network of healthcare providers to promote the human health benefits of trees and forests and developing a set of data on the therapeutic benefits of tree canopy. These efforts are helping to improve health outcomes, instill greater appreciation and stewardship of trees, and expand tree canopy.

    John Henderson, Park Rx America | Robert Corletta, DC Department of Transportation Urban Forestry Division
    John Henderson is the executive director of Park Rx America and is a Certified Parks and Recreation Executive, attorney, and city planner with more than 25 years of experience in parks and recreation. John earned a Juris Doctor degree from The John Marshall Law School, a bachelor's degree in Community Planning from the University of Cincinnati, a Certificate in Public Performance Measurement from Rutgers University, and a Certificate in Public Health Fundamentals from the Eppley Institute at University of Indiana.

    Robert Corletta serves as the state urban and community forestry coordinator for the District of Columbia. He has 20 years of experience managing urban forests for a number of jurisdictions. Robert is a graduate of the University of Washington's Center for Urban Horticulture where he received a Masters of Forest Resources in Environmental Horticulture and Urban Forestry. He is an ISA Certified Arborist, a Municipal Specialist, and holds the Tree Risk Assessment Qualification. Robert is a proud alumnus of the Municipal Forestry Institute and is a member of the MAC-ISA chapter.


    Tree Campus Healthcare: Engaging Healthcare Facilities in Community Forestry

    Healthcare facilities are often the largest employers and most important assets to communities across America. As awareness continues to grow among healthcare practitioners on the connection between human health outcomes and urban trees, forests, and natural settings, the Arbor Day Foundation has launched a new recognition program to provide a framework for engaging facilities to connect with local community forestry programs.

    Dan Lambe, Arbor Day Foundation | Jon Utech, Cleveland Clinic | Frank Monteleone, Davey Resource Group, Inc.
  • 10:00–10:30 a.m. Beverage and Networking Break With Exhibitors
  • 10:30–11:05 a.m. Opportunities and Challenges to Forming a New Tree Campus K–12 Partnership

    The City of Highland Park, Illinois, urban forestry program and the Highland Park High School environmental science program have recently developed a partnership, collaborating on the city's Arbor Day celebration and a new effort to achieve Tree Campus K–12 status for the school. The inclusion of local students has resulted in a richer Arbor Day event, and pursuing Tree Campus K–12 status has challenged school staff to assemble a new team.

    Dr. Keith O'Herrin, City of Highland Park, Illinois | Howie Hill, Highland Park High School
    Keith O'Herrin has worked in municipal forestry for several cities over the last decade, and is currently the city forester for the City of Highland Park, IL. His research has included ways to improve the urban forestry profession for practitioners (Urban Forestry 2020) and how to diversify recruitment into urban forestry. He is currently studying the efficacy of ordinances to preserve trees during construction, as well as street tree planting survival.

    Howard Hill has taught AP Environmental Science at Highland Park High School since 2006, having co-developed the curriculum for the school. He holds a BS in Environmental Biology from the University of Guelph, Ontario, and a master's degree in Environmental Studies from Northeastern Illinois University. Howie has been nominated for two Disney teaching awards and was awarded the Presidential Innovation Award for Environmental Educators as well as the National Teaching Award from Northwestern University.


    Thinking Beyond the Backyard: Diversity in Urban Tree Plantings across the Northeastern U.S.

    Tree planting efforts have increased in cities across the United States in recent years. However, information on these plantings remains siloed by city, making it challenging to identify national trends or make city-to-city comparisons. This study consolidates and synthesizes data from municipalities and nonprofit organizations across the northeastern United States to discern patterns in species composition that can inform future plantings and improve tree planting programs on the local level.

    Danica Doroski, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies
    Danica Doroski is a doctoral student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies where she studies urban forest dynamics and restoration. Her current research builds on past experience in horticulture and outreach with the New York Restoration Project and Partnerships for Parks. Danica is interested in the intersection of research and management, and her current research measures the diversity of planted trees in cities across the northeast to gauge resiliency and help cities make more informed decisions about which species to plant.

  • 10:30–11:05 a.m. Lightning Round: Technology Update session includes four 7-minute presentations on a single topic

    Harnessing the Power of GIS to Preserve the Urban Forest

    Arboreta are complex and ever-evolving landscapes, especially those within urban environments. As stewards of these urban forests, we are ever-aware that the maintenance records of the past reflect the historical fabric of our institutions and influence future decisions and day-to-day operations. We must refine our approach to record-keeping as technology evolves, moving from a paper-dependent system to one that incorporates geo-locating technology, increased automation, and comprehensive data analysis.

    Joe Charap, Green-Wood Cemetery
    Joseph Charap is the director of horticulture and curator for Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, NY. At Green-Wood since 2015, Joseph is responsible for curating and developing the arboretum's living collections, managing the horticulture operations, and establishing research and educational initiatives related to its collection. He graduated from the New York Botanical Garden School of Professional Horticulture and holds a master's degree in English literature from Brooklyn College.


    Use of Technology for Diverse Tree Planting in the Wake of EAB

    The history of urban forestry is filled with stories of mass tree loss followed by poor choices in tree planting. Introduced pests and pathogens are becoming more common, and the best method we have of insulating ourselves is diverse tree planting. This session will detail several case studies of the use of GIS technology and advanced canopy assessment in order to create highly diverse tree planting plans which are taxonomically, spatially, and temporally diverse while also creating an arboretum-like setting on our streets and green spaces.

    Stephen Lane, Graf Tree Care
    Steve Lane is an urban forestry consultant, ecologist, and a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) analyst with Graf Tree Care, Inc., who specializes in creative use of GIS technology and its use in improving the urban forest and the urban ecosystem overall. He holds a BS from the University of Oregon, where he double-majored in Environmental Science and Geography. Steve has extensive experience in urban forestry management planning, tree inventory, wetland science, GIS, tree planting plans, and urban tree canopy assessments.


    Preparing Urban Forestry Staff and Students for the Near- and Middle-Futures

    This presentation will outline new technologies that will make important inroads into municipal/urban forestry and urban infrastructure management. Remote sensing tools -- such as canopy cover analyses from satellite, aircraft, and drone data -- and tree risk assessments using remote sensing platforms are among the technologies poised to become standard tools in the near future.

    Daniel Staley, Arbor Drone, LLC
    Dan Staley is the principal of Arbor Drone, LLC, and is educated in urban forestry, urban planning, and urban ecology. A licensed drone pilot, Dan has focused his research on urban forests and drones, trees and solar energy, trees and urban design, and urban forests and green infrastructure. His work has appeared in the scholarly literature, proceedings, trade magazines, briefing papers, podcasts, webinars, workshops, and more.


    i-Tree Software Update

    If you haven't checked out i-Tree in the past few years, you are in for some big surprises! The flagship software, i-Tree Eco is easier to use than ever, including a street tree inventory import function. i-Tree Landscape has 150+ urban forestry-related map layers loaded up, including UTC data in many areas. i-Tree Canopy has a revamped user interface. What does your community forestry need? i-Tree has FREE tools that can help with your goals.

    Mike Binkley, The Davey Institute (a Division of The Davey Tree Expert Company)
    Mike Binkley currently manages Corporate Mapping and Technology Development for various research and development programs at The Davey Tree Expert Company. This includes internal and external software and web development projects, geographic information systems, and their associated hardware needs. Mike holds a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Conservation and a Master of Arts in Geography. He has been with Davey for more than 20 years, has served as adjunct professor at Kent State University, and has also run a consulting business for 25 years.

  • 11:15–11:50 a.m. The Most Valuable Urban Tree Species

    Not all trees are created equal. Though all trees provide value, some tree species are more valuable as they provide greater benefits to society. The purpose of this presentation is to display new results regarding total tree values over the projected life span of various tree species. This presentation will detail how total values vary among species and through time. Knowing the relative differences in values among species can help guide species selections to enhance the long-term value of urban forests.

    Dr. David Nowak, USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station
    Dave Nowak is a senior scientist and team leader with the USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station in Syracuse, NY. His research investigates urban forest structure, health, and change and its effect on human health and environmental quality. He has authored more than 300 publications and leads teams developing i-Tree software tools to quantify ecosystem services and values from trees and forests.


    New Applications of Old Tools: A Community Outreach Protocol in Washington, D.C.

    This project demonstrates a new protocol for the District of Columbia's Urban Forestry Administration (UFA) and community groups to understand where, why, and how tree canopy can be enhanced. With limited space along streets to expand canopy, UFA and Casey Trees are employing creative approaches on private property where the greatest potential exists to reach a 40% tree canopy goal. The framework used old tools in new ways, specifically focused on community engagement then identified strategies for management, policy, and outreach.

    Ian Hanou, Plan-It GEO | Dr. Jessica Sanders, Casey Trees
    Ian Hanou has 18 years of private sector experience. He earned a BS in Forest Management and GIS from Colorado State University and founded Plan-It Geo in 2012. He specializes in urban forestry software, GIS, remote sensing, green infrastructure, and ecosystem services. He has managed 300 urban tree canopy studies. In 2011, the Society of Municipal Arborists honored Ian with an award for innovation in tree planting prioritization using GIS. He lives in Colorado with his wife and two children, where he has climbed all 54 mountains over 14,000 feet.

    Jess Sanders, Ph.D., is the director of science and policy at Casey Trees based in Washington, D.C., and works closely with the city's Urban Forestry Administration. Her experience includes research, urban design, establishing educational partnerships, leadership concepts and competencies, volunteer engagement, data quality in citizen science, tree growth, soils, and urban forest management.

  • 11:15–11:50 a.m. Lightning Round: Partner Innovation session includes four 7-minute presentations on a single topic

    Trees for Threes: A Growing Partnership

    Over the course of three years, The Davey Tree Expert Company and Western Reserve Land Conservancy worked to transform a tree planting with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The project began with the typical hype: more than 300 trees in the ground, at two locations, too much hoopla. The results were also typical: within a year, most of the trees had died, victims of poor follow-up care or vandalism. But instead of giving up, the group added new partners, changed locations, and connected the tree plantings with a larger community tree plan.

    Jennifer Lennox, The Davey Tree Expert Company
    Jennifer Lennox is the manager of public relations at The Davey Tree Expert Company, where she has oversight of Davey's employee communications, social media, crisis communications, and public relations.


    The Business Viability of Fresh-Cut Urban Wood: A Case Study From Baltimore

    Camp Small has been Baltimore's collection facility for removed and downed street trees and park trees for the past 70 years. Within the past several years, with support from an city innovation grant, Camp Small has transformed from a facility that cost the city more than $60,000 annually to an operation that saves Baltimore City Agencies more than $100,000 annually by providing mulch, logs, lumber, and more. Hear about the innovative financing and the strategic decisions that have enabled this success story.

    Shaun Preston, City of Baltimore, Department of Recreation & Parks–Forestry
    Shaun Preston is the Camp Small yardmaster for the City of Baltimore's Forestry Division. He manages the wood sorting facility and its urban wood utilization program. All the fallen and removed city-owned trees get taken to Camp Small, and Shaun helps the wood find a new purpose. He has seen city trees repurposed into wooden bowls, tables, guitars, whiskey barrels, and more. Shaun enjoys teaching folks about wood utilization, helping them achieve their creative goals. And he loves seeing when a special old tree is memorialized through repurposing its wood.


    FoodPlaces: A Toolkit for Growing Community Food Forests

    This session will provide a guided tour of FoodPlaces, an online toolkit for community/urban forestry practitioners who wish to integrate edible and useful plants into underutilized public/civic spaces. FoodPlaces is a set of tools and resources enabling users to create urban food forests without needing to know hundreds of plant species. FoodPlaces is also a platform where communities of practice can form to grow knowledge around related regenerative practices.

    Mario Yanez, Inhabit Earth
    Mario Yanez is dedicated to inspiring a transition toward life-sustaining, resilient human communities. He has an academic background in finance, information systems, and ecology. He has several decades of experience applying systems thinking to developing and funding cutting-edge programming/active-learning curriculum supportive of a much-needed cultural evolution. As a permaculture practitioner, he is applying design at various scales, implementing regenerative productive landscapes, enterprises, and organizational and social systems.


    The Importance and Role of Urban Trees in Reykjaví­k, Iceland

    Iceland is a country revered for its barren volcanic landscapes. An emotional relationship with these degraded landscapes influences Icelanders' attitudes towards trees in urban environments; many are unaware of existing trees in Reykjavík. The management of urban trees is informal, and inadequate value is given to trees in planning. Clear communication between planners and the public and more education about the history of trees in Iceland in connection with potential benefits will be critical for creating a thriving urban forest in Reykjavík.

    Alexis Neukirch, University of Iceland
    Alexis Neukirch studied for a master's degree in Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Iceland. In her Master thesis research, she conducted pioneering works into the role and significance of urban trees in Reykjavík. A native of the Midwest United States, she completed her BS in Natural Resources and Environmental Science at the University of Kentucky. While in Iceland, she not only developed a love for Icelandic skyr but also a keen interest in urban forest management in an almost treeless land.

  • 11:50 a.m. –1:00 p.m. Plated Lunch included with conference registration
  • 1:00–1:35 p.m. We Have a Street Tree Inventory... Now What?

    A street tree inventory can be a municipal urban forestry program's greatest asset. Understanding, analyzing and communicating information from a street tree inventory can aide urban forestry staff in leveraging community support, increasing program budgets, and improving the overall sustainability of the urban forest. This presentation highlights several communities, including Detroit and Ann Arbor, and explains how they leveraged support and transformed their urban forestry program by utilizing data from their street tree inventories.

    Kerry Gray, Davey Resource Group, Inc. | Todd Mistor, City of Detroit
    Kerry Gray is a senior urban forestry consultant with Davey Resource Group, responsible for providing project oversight and technical input into municipal urban forestry master plans and management plans. Prior to joining Davey, she was the City of Ann Arbor's urban forestry and natural resources planning coordinator, overseeing planning and management of the city's trees. Kerry holds a BS and MS in Forestry from Michigan State University, is an ISA Certified Arborist, a Municipal Specialist, and serves on Michigan's Urban & Community Forestry Council.

    Todd Mistor oversees the Forestry Division for the City of Detroit. He holds a BS in Forestry from Michigan State University and is an ISA Certified Arborist and a Municipal Specialist. The City of Detroit presents many challenges as well as abundant opportunity. Todd likes to describe Detroit as a place where you have to work twice as hard for half the results, but if you are okay with that equation, you can do anything you want.


    Effective Advocacy and Public-Private Partnerships

    In the mid-2000's, an advocacy movement grew in Grand Rapids, Michigan, centered on parks, green spaces, and trees. From this movement, a nonprofit was born and a public-private partnership formed that shaped the way urban forestry in Grand Rapids would be done for decades to come. This is the story of how a few motivated citizens changed their city and led to a successful public-private partnership between Friends of Grand Rapids Parks and the City of Grand Rapids. This presentation will cover what worked, what didn't, and what's next.

    Dan Coy, City of Grand Rapids | Dia Noble, Friends of Grand Rapids Parks
    Dan Coy is the city forester for the City of Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he leads a team of 12 in caring for the city's 76,000 trees. During his time with Grand Rapids, Dan has taken the forestry operations from a paper work order system to a completely paperless system and from a reactive maintenance program to a proactive data-driven program. Prior to Grand Rapids, he was the city forester for Elkhart, Indiana, where he guided Elkhart through the peak ash die-off from emerald ash borer and developed a full-circle urban wood use program.


    Untapped Common Ground: The Care of Forested Natural Areas in American Cities

    Forested natural areas contribute to improved human health, mitigate the impacts of climate change, and support ecological functions within cities, and 84% of city parkland is comprised of natural areas. Despite being a dominant urban greenspace, natural areas often go unnoticed, are underutilized, and under-resourced in contrast to the other forms of urban nature and parkland. In this session, you will see results from a survey of 125 land managers representing 111 cities across the U.S. and share trends in the priorities for management.

    Clara Pregitzer & Sarah Charlop-Powers, Natural Areas Conservancy
    Clara Pregitzer is an applied forest ecologist who focuses on understanding how the consequences of human use impact forest ecosystems and how to connect science and data into decision-making and successful conservation policy. She led the forest assessment in New York City's 10,000 acres of forested natural areas. She holds a BS in forestry, an MS in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and is pursuing a Ph.D. in Forestry.

    Sarah Charlop-Powers is the co-founder and executive director of the Natural Areas Conservancy (NAC), a nonprofit dedicated to managing New York City's 20,000 acres of forests and wetlands. The NAC is a pioneer in the field of urban conservation, using data and science to develop new ways to manage urban natural areas so that they provide recreation opportunities for diverse users, protect biodiversity, and provide environmental benefits. Sarah has a BA in Economics from Binghamton University and an MEM from the Yale School of Forestry.

  • 1:45–2:20 p.m. Our Management Plan is Out of Date! How Can We Modernize It in a Cost-Effective Way?

    Everything seems to change rapidly: our climate, invasive plant and insect species, tree risk inspection standards, budgets, etc. But the City of Cincinnati's plan to address these external factors was long out of date. Hear about how the City of Cincinnati went through a 2-year update of its natural resource management plan, which now calls for increased inspection frequencies for trees based on risk, an evaluation of species planted since the inception of the program, and incorporation of climate resiliency to guide future plantings.

    Dave Gamstetter, City of Cincinnati Park Board/Davey Resource Group, Inc.
    Dave Gamstetter is the long-term natural resource manager for the Cincinnati Park Board. He recently wrapped up a two-year process of updating Cincinnati's Natural Resource Manager Plan before retiring from the city after 30 years. He is now joining the Davey Resource Group as a principal consultant, where he will work to enhance a service line for performing green infrastructure maintenance and inspections for Midwestern sewer districts.


    Don't Fear the Woodlot

    Woodlots are often forgotten until they pose a problem. A tree falls, invasive plants invade, or the woodlot becomes unruly or unsightly. Woodlot tree management does not need to be reactive, nor should the idea of maintaining woodlots be daunting. Learn how Green-Wood Cemetery -- which is both an arboretum and National Historic Landmark in the heart of Brooklyn, NY -- developed a plan to manage its nine woodlots to keep invasive plants at bay and the integrity of the landscape intact. Keeping it simple was the key.

    Joe Charap, Green-Wood Cemetery | Shirley Vaughn & Jim Jenkins, Davey Resource Group, Inc.
    Joe Charap is the director of horticulture and curator of the Living Collection at Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, NY. Green-Wood is a National Historic Landmark, an ArbNet Level III arboretum, and one of the top 10 cemeteries in the world.

    Shirley Vaughn is a business developer for Davey Resource Group, working with public and private sectors throughout Ohio, the mid-Atlantic and southeast to accomplish urban forest initiatives. She specializes in developing tree inventory and canopy assessment projects and creating plans for the urban forest based on community needs. Shirley focuses on identifying problems and finding solutions that work for each client. She is an ISA Certified Arborist and has a BS and MS from the University of Iowa.

    Jim Jenkins is a senior project manager and consulting arborist for Davey Resource Group. Jim oversees urban forest projects for DRG and also works directly with cities, nonprofits, and campuses to assess tree risk and develop plans for tree maintenance and management. Jim is an ISA Certified Arborist, TRAQ, and has a bachelor's degree from Kent State University.

  • 1:45–2:20 p.m. Lightning Round: Outreach & Engagement session includes four 7-minute presentations on a single topic

    This American Forest: Lorax Hunting

    Urban trees have many benefits, from social and aesthetic to environmental and economic. In a perfect world, these benefits would be self-evident. But modern life requires more time and attention from everyone as time passes, which requires someone to stand up and speak for the trees so others may know and appreciate the canopy in their neighborhood. This presentation will explore the human component of urban forests, the challenges and opportunities of the modern-day Lorax, and where we might find the next generation.

    Graham Herbst & Eric Berg, Nebraska Forest Service
    Graham Herbst is a native Nebraskan and graduate of the Horticulture Program at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. After working in the landscape and arboriculture industries, he moved to the Nebraska Forest Service to promote innovative urban forestry projects as the community forestry specialist for eastern Nebraska. Graham loves growing trees and food at home and bringing the family out to plant trees and explore each corner of the state. He wants to hear from tree advocates about forestry challenges and opportunities in Nebraska communities.

    Eric Berg is the community forestry and sustainable landscapes program leader for the Nebraska Forest Service.


    A New Way to Arbor Day: Strength in Partnership

    The City of Austin's Arbor Day celebration, a 27-year tradition, has struggled with lower attendance due to lack of resources, niche community appeal, and direct competition from other interest groups. In 2018, the city introduced the Roots & Wings Festival, a collaborative partnership project designed to encourage connection with and care of two established communities: migratory monarchs and trees. This presentation will cover the motivation to reimagine Arbor Day, successes, practical strategies for partnering, and future growth goals.

    Leah Haynie, City of Austin
    Leah Haynie has more than 15 years of experience planning, collaborating, and engaging the community in the areas of air quality, urban heat reduction, and green infrastructure systems. She is passionate about civil service and working for the common good. Leah concentrates her work on programming, partnerships, data transparency, and communication. Her goal is a lasting culture of stewardship that nurtures her community's future forest. Leah was born and raised in Austin, Texas, and has a degree in Planning from Texas State University.


    Forest Bathing for Tree Tenders

    Forest Therapy, also known as "Shinrin-Yoku" or Forest Bathing, refers to the practice of spending time in forested areas for the purpose of enhancing health, wellness, and happiness. The practice follows the general principle that it is beneficial to spend time bathing in the atmosphere of the forest. It's not just about healing people; it includes healing for the forest, river, desert, or any natural space.

    M. Amos Clifford, Association of Nature and Forest Therapy Guides and Programs
    Amos Clifford is the founder of the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy Guides and Programs, author of the best selling Your Guide to Forest Bathing, and primary developer of ANFT's acclaimed training programs. He is also the founder of the Center for Restorative Process, where he has led the inquiry into how the principles of restorative justice can inform ways to heal the broken relationships between humans and the more-than-human world of nature. Amos holds a BS in Organization Development and an MA in Counseling from the University of San Francisco.


    Trees Cannot Exist Alone: A Shared Power Model for Engagement

    How can sharing platforms help us to broaden our audience while staying mission-aligned? Austin Nature in the City (NitC) is a collaboration between multiple City of Austin programs and partners working together to increase the community's access to nature. Managed by Austin's Community Tree Preservation Division, NitC uses a shared power model to deepen impact and broaden reach. We'll explore the creation and growth of the platform as an example of how leveraging diverse expertise strengthens stewardship messaging.

    Joanna Dwyer, City of Austin Urban Forest Program
    Jo Dwyer works to help others find inspiration in their environments, whether in the trees that cool our streets or a mural that shares the stories of our neighborhood. Through this mission, she has educated, engaged, and organized folks of all ages from the coast of Maine to her current home in the heart of Texas. As community catalyst with the City of Austin's Urban Forest Program, Jo shares resources, centers diverse voices, and builds connections to support her Austin neighbors in achieving their vision of a vibrant, resilient future.

  • 2:30–3:05 p.m. Botanical Gardens and Arboreta as Partners for Urban and Community Forestry

    Professional botanical gardens and arboreta have an important role to play in meeting the great modern need for urban greening and sustaining healthy forests where people live, work, and play. They have significant public reach, maintain a strong professional network, and have important contributions for the success of key priorities, including 1) protecting existing trees; 2) improving tree selection, diversity, and age structure; and 3) improving planning, standards, training, and management.

    Dr. Nicole Cavender, The Morton Arboretum
    Nicole Cavender is the vice president of science and conservation at The Morton Arboretum. Nicole is responsible for programs that generate new knowledge and help transfer that knowledge to professionals and communities. She oversees the scientific research programs, urban forestry initiatives including the Chicago Region Trees Initiative, conservation programs to prevent extinction of tree species, and ArbNet, which administers an arboretum accreditation program to strengthen the arboretum network and foster arboreta professionalism.


    Changing the Way We Talk About Urban Forestry

    How successful are we at reaching our audiences about urban forestry issues in our community? What is urban forestry today, how has it evolved, and who are our audiences now? And are we using terms they understand and making the case relevant to them to take action? This presentation will discuss marketing and communication tips and trends, common marketing pitfalls, terms to use and avoid, and theory behind what drives consumers to make decisions -- all in the name of improving your urban forestry outreach efforts.

    Rachel Comte, Urban Canopy Works, LLC
    Rachel Comte is an arborist, urban planner, trained facilitator, and communications expert. She is a leading authority on urban forestry master plans and has developed plans for cities across the United States. Prior to her urban forest management experience, Rachel served in diverse roles throughout her career. She has more than 20 years of combined experience in project management, strategic marketing, consulting, landscape design, green infrastructure, and planning and urban forestry and has worked in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors.

  • 2:30–3:05 p.m. Lightning Round: Municipal Forestry session includes four 7-minute presentations on a single topic

    Is Surveying Trees With Volunteers a Ticket to Success?

    In urban forestry, we love to talk about the benefits of caring for young trees during the establishment period, but how many times can we say we've successfully followed through and know that young trees are getting the care they need before it's too late? Every summer hundreds of volunteers are recruited, trained, and dispatched to report on the health and needs of trees across Palo Alto, CA. This presentation will cover how they engage volunteers, give tree stewards tree watering reminders, and report tree care needs to city staff.

    Elise Willis, Canopy
    Elise Willis is an ISA Certified Arborist and community forestry manager at Canopy -- a nonprofit based in Palo Alto, California, -- where she manages several tree survey, planting, and community engagement programs. With previous municipal work experience, she also holds a working knowledge of strategies to reduce tree and infrastructure conflicts as well as how to prioritize trees during development. She has a BS in Forest Resources and Conservation from the University of Florida, is a Municipal Forestry Institute alumna, and infuses drawing skills into many Canopy activities.


    Writing Excellent Tree Pruning Specifications

    Pruning specifications need to be written in a manner so the person performing the work cannot prune the tree to a different result than the specifications describe. The ANSI A300 Tree Management Standards Part 1-Pruning and the ISA Best Management Practices create the foundation for writing quality tree pruning specifications. Carefully selected language and using a work description process and flow leads the work to accomplish what is desired. The inspector needs to have a clear way to measure the effectiveness of the work.

    Gordon Mann, California Tree and Landscape Consulting, Inc.
    Gordon Mann is a consulting arborist and urban forester in Auburn, CA, with 41 years of experience in public works and urban tree management, having served in Brookfield, IL; San Mateo, CA; and Redwood City, CA. He helped establish the nonprofit CityTrees in Redwood City and worked as the urban forest services manager with the Sacramento Tree Foundation. Gordon works with developers, tree owners, and municipalities to grow better trees. He is passionate about the benefits trees provide people, ANSI A300 standards, and clear specifications for work.


    Urban Tree Monitoring Standards: A Practical Guide to Repeated Measurement

    Is our planting program successful? How has the tree species composition changed in the city? How much have trees grown? Long-term collection of urban tree data can provide valuable information for urban forest managers and researchers interested in these and other questions. This presentation introduces the Urban Tree Monitoring Standards. Learn how to conduct long-term, repeated monitoring of individual trees. The core variables necessary for monitoring projects will be covered as well as how to design and implement a monitoring project.

    Dr. Natalie van Doorn, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station
    Natalie van Doorn is a Research Urban Ecologist with the USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station in Albany, CA, studying the temporal dynamics of urban forests. Current research topics include quantifying urban tree mortality, modeling urban tree growth, and adapting urban forests to climate change through urban tree species selection. She received BS, MS, and Ph.D. degrees in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management from the University of California, Berkeley.


    Plant Where We Can't! Expanding Your Urban Tree Canopy Onto Private Property

    The City of Corvallis, OR, municipal code limits Urban Forestry staff to planting trees in public right of ways, parks, and open spaces. In an effort to expand the urban canopy, staff worked with the local Civic Beautification and Urban Forestry advisory group (CBUF) to create a new city program to get free trees to homeowners on private property. This presentation will discuss how the City of Corvallis created a free front yard tree program and programmatic lessons learned.

    Jennifer Killian, City of Corvallis Parks and Recreation
    Jennifer Killian is the urban forestry outreach specialist for the City of Corvallis. In her home state of Wisconsin, Jennifer worked for the state Department of Agriculture and was on the team that initially found Emerald Ash Borer in 2007. Jennifer has a master's degree from Oregon State University focused on long-term strategic urban forestry management. After finishing her master's degree, Jennifer worked with Friends of Trees in Eugene where she was the volunteer program coordinator and learned invaluable lessons about urban forestry management and communities.

  • 3:05–3:30 p.m. Refreshment & Networking Break With Exhibitors
  • 3:30–5:00 p.m. Partnerships in Corporate Sustainability

    Join us for this closing session that will explore the motivations of corporate sustainability programs to finance community forestry projects. Dan Lambe, Arbor Day Foundation, will lead this panel discussion of corporate leaders investing in urban forestry to achieve goals for sustainability, employee engagement, and community resilience.

    TBD
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