Charlotte, North Carolina

November 5-6, 2014

50th Annual International Conference and Trade Show “Milestones in Urban Forestry – 50 Years of Growth”

info 9.75 ISA CEU’s available

info 9.5 SAF CFE’s available


November 3–4, 2014 | The Westin Charlotte | Register Now


Event Info

The Society of Municipal Arborists (SMA) is leading the world in building the confidence, competence and camaraderie of the family of professionals who create and sustain community forests. The SMA is an organization of municipal arborists and urban foresters, and their membership also includes consultants, commercial firms and citizens who actively practice or support some facet of municipal forestry.

Registration Fees

Society of Municipal Arborists Member Rate: $179
Society of Municipal Arborists Non-Member Rate: $199

Monday, November 3, 2014

  • 12:00–7:00 p.m. Registration Open
  • 1:00–4:00 p.m. Bartlett Labs Urban Forestry Research Workshop Pre-Conference Event (separate registration/fee required)

    This workshop will provide research information specific to municipal forest managers. Selected studies will highlight the following three main areas of need in growing, managing, and enjoying an urban forest, and the lead researchers for each area will be on hand to explain procedures, results, and discuss findings with participants.

    • Urban Plaza and Sidewalk Research Area – Dr. Tom Smiley

      From a study published in 2006, a test of how well trees fare in five different types of growing media with the same volume was continued. The trees are monitored and tracked from year to year to measure their branch extensions, height, diameter at breast height (DBH), leaf count and more.

    • Elm Cultivars and Pruning Maintenance – Dr. Bruce Fraedrich and Greg Paige

      Many defects in mature trees can be avoided by pruning at a young age. Structural pruning of young, developing trees provides a desirable and stable form at maturity. Elm Cultivars are becoming used more, and all municipal managers should be aware of what cultivars are available—and their limitations.

    • Rootball Disturbance Research – Dr. Kelby Fite and Elden LeBrun

      Many root issues facing trees in the landscape result from deformation due to container production. We will demonstrate techniques to correct these defects at planting.

    Registration Fees

    Society of Municipal Arborists Member Rate: $39
    Society of Municipal Arborists Non-Member Rate: $79

  • 5:00–6:00 p.m. Society of Municipal Arborists' Urban Forestry Foundation Run, Walk or Watch Pre-Conference Event (separate registration/fee required)

    Help raise money for urban forestry programs and get a little exercise at the same time. Spectators welcome! Proceeds to benefit the Urban Forest Foundation. (T-shirt included for all who register by October 20, 2014.) Additional event details coming soon.

    Registration Fee: $25

  • 6:00–7:30 p.m. MFI Reunion – The 3rd Annual Gumby Gathering

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

  • 7:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. Registration Open
  • 7:00–8:00 a.m. Breakfast with Exhibitors
  • 7:00–8:00 a.m. First-Time Attendees Breakfast with Organization Leaders
  • 8:00–8:15 a.m. Welcome/Opening Comments Rachel Barker, President, Society of Municipal Arborists | Local Dignitary
  • 8:15–9:00 a.m. Creating a Municipal Partnership Between Arborists and Engineers

    This presentation will focus on the unique and effective partnerships and processes the City of Charlotte has developed through its arborists and engineers working as a team.

    David Meachum, Engineering Services Manager, City of Charlotte
  • 9:00–9:45 a.m. Improving the Standards of Tree Care in Your Community

    The improvement of tree care is a difficult task for an urban forester or concerned citizen group to undertake. Maintenance providers and the general public both must be educated, and the use of nationally recognized materials such as the ANSI A300 standards for tree care can provide the means to get the right message delivered.

    Nolan Rundquist, City Forester, City of Seattle
  • 9:45–10:15 a.m. Break with Exhibitors
  • 10:15–10:45 a.m. TRAQ and Its Application for Municipal Foresters

    Should you add Tree Risk Assessment Qualification to your skill set? While the qualification has been out for a while now, many urban forest managers wonder if they should invest in the training and testing. Find out why the credential’s popularity has exceeded expectations and how it is being utilized in many municipal programs.

    Skip Kincaid, Senior Urban Forester, Davey Resource Group
  • 10:45–11:15 a.m. Mutually Beneficial Partnerships with the Help of Project Management Tools and Techniques

    If you have heard of “project scope,” a “WBS” (Work Breakdown Structure,) or a “Gantt chart,” you are among a growing number of arborists exposed to project management terminology. Some of us may even work with a PMP (Project Manager Professional) or are required to submit project plans. Let’s explore in what capacity Municipal Arborists benefit from the Project Management profession—is it possible to learn these same ins-and-outs...from a tree?

    Stan Veraat, Owner, Grow with Trees
  • 11:15 a.m.–12:00 p.m. Improving Street Tree Performance, York Region Experience

    A look at how continuous improvement can be implemented to achieve desired performance objectives for recently planted street trees, as well as some lessons learned in addressing poor performance of street trees

    James Lane, Urban Forestry Program Manager, Regional Municipality of York, Canada
  • 12:00–1:00 p.m. Lunch with Exhibitors
  • 1:00–1:45 p.m. i-Tree Landscape: Identifying Urban Forest Priority Areas

    Attendees can strategically identify priority planting and protection areas based on human and tree populations, environmental hazards mitigated by trees and ecosystem services provided by trees. This prioritization will minimize the budget and effort for urban tree management while maximizing the value and effect of urban trees.

    Sataoshi Hirabayashi, Environmental Modeler, Davey Institute | Dave Nowak, USFS Research Director, Northern Research Station | Allison Bodine, Research Forester, Davey Tree Expert Company
  • 1:45–2:30 p.m. Citizen Stewardship of Portland’s Trees: Private Responsibility for Public Assets

    A look at the opportunities and challenges of several volunteer programs that have significantly shaped the management of Portland’s urban forest, as well as some program models for evaluation and consideration by other municipalities.

    Jennifer Cairo, City Forester/City Nature Zone Manager, City of Portland, OR
  • 2:30–3:00 p.m. i-Tree Update – Version 2014 is Here!

    The new 2014 release of the i-Tree tools greatly expands the capabilities of two of the most widely used applications: i-Tree Design and i-Tree Canopy. In addition, i-Tree Hydro has also been redesigned with many new features.

    Scott Maco, Director of Research and Development, Davey Institute | Dave Nowak, USFS Research Director, Northern Research Station
  • 3:00–3:30 p.m. Break with Exhibitors
  • 3:30–4:00 p.m. Volunteer Impacts on the Urban Forestry Industry

    Case studies, such as Fall River, MA, Ithaca, NY, and Upper Merion, PA, will be used to demonstrate how professional staff support, budgeting, scheduling, training and other aspects give the municipality a structure in which to assess their projects. Municipal employees, professional staff, nonprofit and nongovernmental organizations and volunteers each contribute to successful tree programs, and when everyone works together, great things happen.

  • 4:00–4:15 p.m. Summer Vacation? No Way! The SMA Intern Experience

    Our interns will share some of the highlights of their 10 week internships.

  • 4:15–5:00 p.m. Step-by-Step Guide for Municipalities and Urban Forest Managers to Assess Resources, Enhance Programs and Monitor Progress Toward Long-Term Sustainability

    This guide, newly released by the USDA Forest Service and The Davey Institute, is intended to help municipal managers and others who oversee the urban forest to assess the state of the forest, identify weak points and chart a path forward—step by step—toward long-term sustainability.

    Dr. Michael Leff, Research Urban Forester, USFS and The Davey Institute
  • 5:00–6:00 p.m. SMA Annual Business Meeting
  • 5:00–8:00 p.m. Certified Arborist & Municipal Specialist Exams

    Pre-registration to sit for exam required. Contact ISA to pre-register.

  • 6:00–7:30 p.m. Reception with Exhibitors and Other Partner Groups

    Silent Auction—Bids support Urban Forest Programs

  • 7:30–9:00 p.m. Society of Municipal Arborists Awards Dinner