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Bulletin #6: How to Hire an Arborist

Arborists owe it to themselves and the people they serve to continually improve their knowledge about trees and tree care. There are many ways to do this. If you are an arborist, we hope you take advantage of these opportunities. If you plan to hire an arborist, one way to check professional credibility is to determine if the individuals are certified by the International Society of Arboriculture and continue their education through professional affiliations and self-study.

Trade Journals

A good way to stay current and expand one’s knowledge about arboriculture is through subscriptions to trade journals such as:

For information about how to receive these or others, simply type the publication name into your favorite search engine.

Workshops and Conferences

Training sessions of all kinds are regularly offered by all of the professional organizations in the green industry. Attendance is one of the best investments you can make, and for certified arborists it will provide the necessary continuing education credits to maintain certification.


There are three key organizations that are dedicated to the tree care trades and professions:

  • P.O. Box 3129
    Champaign, IL 61826-3129

    ISA offers various membership categories depending on occupation. Special interest groups within ISA include the Utility Arborist Association, Society of Municipal Arborists, Arboricultural Research & Education Academy, Society of Commercial Arboriculture and Student Society of Arboriculture. There are also regional chapters. ISA sponsors arborist certification and in other ways promotes the improvement of arboriculture among its members and the public. It sponsors research, produces educational materials, maintains a computerized information service, and holds a combined annual conference, trade show and climbing competition. It also maintains a list of colleges and universities offering degree programs in arboriculture, urban horticulture and urban forestry. ISA publishes the Journal of Arboriculture and Arborist News on alternate months.

  • 136 Harvey Rd., Suite 101
    Londonderry, NH 03053

    Membership in TCIA is comprised of commercial tree care service firms. It has helped to develop sets of standards for pruning, cabling and other techniques widely used in the industry. TCIA also publishes Tree Care Industry magazine and provides a wide range of training materials about safety and tree care techniques. Field personnel of member firms have access to several online newsletters.

  • 9707 Key West Ave., Suite 100
    Rockville, MD 20850

    Membership is only for practicing arborists who specialize in advising, diagnosing, recommending treatments, making appraisals and offering legal testimony in court. A membership directory and application procedures are available online. Members receive a quarterly newsletter, Arboricultural Consultant, referrals, and an annual educational meeting.

To locate a consulting arborist near you, visit: American Society of Consulting Arborists’s website redirect

Last Updated: 03/25/19

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