Spring 2011 TREE Fund Report: From the Director’s Chair

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From the Director’s Chair

By Janet Bornancin
TREE Fund Executive Director
Happy New Year! Like most of you, we begin the year with ambitious goals:

  • to purposefully advance the future of arboriculture and urban forestry by funding relevant and significant research
  • to support the education of potential future leaders of the industry
  • to make optimum use of all of our resources
  • to develop new opportunities and partners inside and outside the tree care industry.

Our goals relate to the initiatives of our Strategic Plan for 2011-2013. Our Board has invested considerable time and thought into constructing a roadmap for our future. It includes updates of our business and marketing plans, a strategy for diversification of our income streams and a plan to update our research agenda to reflect the evolving needs of the tree care industry. Meet our newest Trustees in this edition of the TREE Fund Report.

In this issue we spotlight Dr. Daniel Herms’ research into EAB-resistant ash trees, funded by a 2009 Hyland Johns Grant, as well as new research projects in Virginia and Australia funded by the TREE Fund’s inaugural Jack Kimmel International Grant awards.

New York City’s Million Trees Training Program, a collaborative project of STIHL, Asplundh, Bartlett Tree Experts and The Davey Tree Expert Company continued its success in 2010. We’re proud to have facilitated this partnership with the City of New York to provide arboriculture training and a shot at a brighter future to young adults from New York’s inner city. Get an update on this life-changing program in this issue.

Funding relevant and significant research takes money, of course. In 2010 the TREE Fund continued to work toward diversifying its income streams and reducing its dependence upon special events for its research budget. The TREE Fund’s Heritage Oak Society, whose members list the TREE Fund as a beneficiary in their estate planning, continues to grow in numbers and promises a long-term source of funding for the foundation. In this edition we spotlight Rose Epperson, a lifelong advocate for trees and their caretakers and a new Heritage Oak Society member.

For the present, however, special events provide most of the funding for our research and education programs. The ISA Chapters, led by our TREE Fund Liaisons, deserve a huge round of applause for their role in the success of our 2010 events. Nineteen chapters (through their member and event donors) contributed $384,871 toward the TREE Fund’s bottom line in 2010. Meet our fundraising stars in this issue, and find out what’s on the horizon for 2011 in our Special Events Update.

As always, the generosity of individual donors is key to continuing the research that keeps today’s arborists knowledgeable, properly equipped and safe. Your donation to the TREE Fund or the Tour des Trees keeps your industry current and growing, and our urban forests evergreen. Donate now at www.treefund.org, or www.stihltourdestrees.org. We’ll put your money to work for the future of your industry.

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