| October 4, 2012 -
The City of Knoxville Tree Board has been chosen as the state's 2012 Tree Board of the Year by the Tennessee Urban Forestry Council, in recognition of the City's commitment to expanding and caring for its urban canopy. The award will be presented at a luncheon in Nashville on Friday, Oct. 5.
The award also means the City will be host of the official Tennessee celebration of Arbor Day on March 1, 2013. There are 40 designated Tree Cities in the state, and each has a Tree Board. This is the first time Knoxville has won Tree Board of the Year.
"We've made huge steps in urban forestry in Knoxville, and this recognition is a reflection of a lot of hard work," said David Vandergriff, chair of the Knoxville City Tree Board. "We recently completed our first citywide tree inventory, and the City is now implementing a management plan based on that inventory."
Another factor in the award was the announcement this year by Mayor Madeline Rogero that the City will hire a full-time urban forester. That position will be filled in the coming weeks.
The purpose of the City Tree Board is to formulate a master street tree plan for all municipal property. The Board assists in disseminating news and information regarding the selection, planting, establishment and maintenance of trees.
The City's Public Service Department is responsible for the planting and maintenance of trees on City property. The City plants about 350 new trees a year and cares for thousands.
"This is a great honor for the Tree Board, and a great recognition of the City's commitment to our trees," said Public Service Director David Brace. "We work closely with the Tree Board and appreciate its input and insights."