ISA Honors Best and Brightest in Tree Care Industry

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (August 2012) – The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA), long-respected as the world’s largest professional organization supporting tree care, research, and education, announces this year’s winners of the 2012 Awards of Distinction, sponsored by Bartlett Tree Experts.

Nine awards were granted to winners in a ceremony on Sunday, August 12, at the 88th annual ISA Conference and Trade Show, August 11—15th in Portland, Oregon. The complete list of honorees includes:

  • Dr. H. Dennis P. Ryan — Award of Merit (Amherst, Mass.)
  • Susan Murray — Alex. L. Shigo Award for Excellence in Arboricultural Education (Langley, British Columbia)
  • Dr. Tom Smiley — Alex L. Shigo Award for Excellence in Arboricultural Education (Charlotte, N.C.)
  • Pedro Mendes Castro — Award of Achievement (Minas Gerais, Brazil)
  • Thomas Mugridge — Honorary Life Membership (South Euclid, Ohio)
  • Dr. Michael Raupp — R. W. Harris Author’s Citation (College Park, Md.)
  • Dr. Jason Grabosky — L.C. Chadwick Award for Arboricultural Research (New Brunswick, N.J.)
  • Tobe Sherrill — Millard F. Blair Exceptional Contribution to Practical Arboriculture Award (Greensboro, N.C.)
  • Dr. P. Eric Wiseman — Early-Career Scientist Award (Blacksburg, Va.)

ISA President Colin Bashford presented the awards in celebration of the select groups’ exceptional achievements. A list of their accomplishments includes:

  • Identified the risks of potential hazards in arboriculture through more than 100 published articles and presentations, and in teaching higher education, advocating a safer professional environment (Ryan)
  • Inspired students as an innovative teacher, author and volunteer in various tree care initiatives in addition to establishing the first of ISA certification programs in her local chapter (Murray)
  • Researched projects on everything from tree fertilization to lightning protection, offering insight to arboriculture profession; author, inventor and podcast presenter of scientific tree care information for arborists and urban foresters (Smiley)
  • Responsible for major improvements to arboriculture in Brazil, including development of the Portuguese arborist certification exam and translation of arborists’ study guide to Portuguese. Brought first-ever tree climbing championship to his country (Castro)
  • Launched career as an ISA Certified Arborist beginning as a boy with a tree crew. Perpetual volunteer on ISA committees, dedicating his life to serving the industry   (Mugridge)
  • Developed Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs, passing on his knowledge of arboriculture through dozens of books, articles, and professional papers. Nationally recognized expert and educational author of the award-winning website, “Bug of the Week” (Raupp)
  • Investigated branch crown development to shed light on trees’ reaction to wind resistance and decay. His patented Cornell Structural Soil, which allows for improved root growth, is now industry standard for growing healthy trees in less than optimum conditions (Grabosky)
  • Promotes proper pruning techniques, work safety practices and latest technical gear for tree climbing through the Sherrill Tree Catalog, a long-respected arborist publication for tree care professionals (Sherrill)
  • Encourages young researchers as an educator and author to grow the arborist profession. Advises on content of college-level arboriculture courses to root system development and tree stability (Wiseman)

Bashford reflected on the uniqueness of the Awards of Distinction, which honor the best of arboriculture on a global level. “This honored group brings value to arboriculture through their individual dedication to education, quality research, and best practices,” said the ISA President. “It’s imperative that we recognize our people who are making an impact and then share their ideas to grow and improve our profession.”

“Bartlett is proud to sponsor ISA’s Awards of Distinction,” added Robert Bartlett Jr., chairman and CEO of Bartlett Tree Experts. “Celebrating the wonderful accomplishments of these men and women encourages people around the world to take notice. The recipients are representative of the incredible achievements happening in tree care research and education.”

ISA 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, publishing, education, and advancing the best practices of proper tree care in the industry. The winners are selected by a diverse group of experts in arboriculture including university professors, retired arborists, owners of tree care companies, and forestry managers. More than 20,000 members make up ISA’s organization worldwide.

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 26 U.S. states, Canada, Ireland and Great Britain. Services include pruning, pest and disease management, fertilization and soil management, cabling and bracing, tree lightning protection systems and tree/stump removal. Its corporate offices are located in Stamford, Connecticut.

For more information, contact:

Sonia Garth

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