Summer 2010 TREE Fund Report: From the Director’s Chair


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By Janet Bornancin
TREE Fund Executive Director
I am hearing it often: “Our government funding has been cut; can you please help?” Funding is disappearing for the programs you’ve relied upon to educate the next generation of arborists.

The prognosis for future government funding for arboriculture research is not promising, and it’s easy to feel helpless in the face of such circumstances. But you don’t have to relinquish control of the future of your industry to the policy wonks in Washington.

The TREE Fund offers you the means to directly influence the destiny of arboriculture and urban forestry. Your gift (large or small), when combined with the gifts of others, can determine whether critical arboriculture education programs continue at universities, colleges and community colleges.

Scholarships offer a stepping stone to the students that will become professional arborists. Scholarly research funded by the TREE Fund is the knowledge bank from which many of the educational sessions at professional conferences are developed. Click here and see how many topics you recognize and have learned from. It’s a diverse, international list, steadily becoming more ambitious in its scope. Control of the funding for these programs must not rest with those who do not appreciate its value.

The TREE fund is your foundation, created by arborists for arborists, for the purpose of advancing your knowledge and increasing your credibility as a professional. As an arborist you have benefited from research funded by past and current donors. As an arborist you also have a responsibility to help sustain the flow of funding for future research.

Today our Annual Fund (which supports research funding and scholarships) is funded primarily through corporate donors and special events, with the latter accounting for more than half of our revenue. Our goal is to diversify our revenue streams to produce a less labor-intensive model. Just as diversification of an urban forest is key to its survival in the face of adversity, diversification is key to the future of the TREE Fund. And you control of the success of our efforts.

You can help by:

  • Making an annual gift of $25 or more to the TREE Fund
  • Committing to a major gift of $5,000 or more (payable over time)
  • Joining the TREE Fund’s Heritage Oak Society by including the TREE Fund in your estate planning. (read about H.O.S. founders John and Bonnie Moran in this issue)

The future of your industry rests with you. The arborists who will follow in your footsteps will be grateful for your vision, and your generosity.Click here to make a donation, or contact me directly for more information.

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