Wednesday, January 13th

Arborist Safety Update
Dr. John Ball, CTSP, South Dakota State University 
This is the 21st year of the Safety Update and will include a look back at the most common incidents from decades ago and how changes in work practices and technology have changed our injuries and fatalities.


Tree Pruning Essentials
Lindsey Purcell, Purdue University
Pruning is a necessary arboriculture practice on trees in the built environment and this activity has a major impact on plant processes. To prune properly, it is important to understand both the proper methods, dosage and influence on the plant system. This presentation explains the essential information needed to prune trees properly and according to current research and best management practices.

Business in Crisis: A Personal Story 
Tad Jacobs, CTSP, QCL, Treemasters

Aerial Rescue (Title TBD)
Erick Palacios, CTSP, Mowbrays Tree Service

TRADESHOW – 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

ID and Importance of Wood Decay Fungi
Christine Balk, The Davey Tree Expert Company
Wood decay fungi are all around us! Fungi don’t follow rules and therefore, do not take the safety of arborists into consideration. It is crucial as arborists, to understand the benefits and risks of fungi in urban environments and how to properly identify them.

SRS Climbing Systems – Work Positioning Techniques
Aaron Feather, CTSP, Cumberland Valley Tree Service
This presentation will cover the technical work positioning techniques involved with SRS climbing systems.

TRADESHOW – 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Return of the Cicadas in 2021
Dr Michael Raupp, University of Maryland – Entomology
For seventeen years they have been feeding on plant roots underground. In the spring of 2021 from Georgia to New York and as far west as Illinois trillions of Brood X periodical cicadas will emerge from the earth. In some locations, densities will reach 1.5 million per acre. We will explore the natural history, evolution, ecology, and behavior of the seven indigenous species of periodical cicadas. We will learn how they damage trees and shrubs and discuss the long and short-term implications of this damage for plant health and survival. Trees at greatest risk will be enumerated. Strategies for reducing the economic and sociologic impact of cicadas will be discussed. For urban planners and city foresters, the timing and location of tree planting are critical considerations. For arborists managing institutional, commercial, and residential properties intervention tactics including the use of insecticides, physical barriers, and mechanical controls will be reviewed.

Beyond the 1099: Are your Workers Employees or Contractors?
Bryan Zliman, Zlimen & McGuiness, PLLC
Help your business avoid costly fines and penalties.  Correctly classifying employees and independent contractors is critical to staffing your business and staying on the right side of the DOL and IRS.  We’ll look at the differences between W-2 and 1099 workers, the advantages to each structure, and how to ensure workers are properly classified.   Real-life examples and frequently asked questions will be included.

Thursday, January 14th

The Messaging Makeover: Tree Care Business Strategies to Dominate Your Market – Now…and in the Future!
Ron Rosenberg, Through the Lens
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected virtually every corner of our lives.  The implications of shelter-at-home orders, business closings, and the nearly universal reduction in spending have impacted us all.

Fortunately, for many green-industry businesses – including Tree Care – this has been a time of unexpected success.  As people are spending more time at home, they want to create the best possible environment to enjoy their time outdoors and protect the home and business investment.

This means that you have to update your messaging so you can offer new services to new markets using new methods.

In this program, you’ll discover how to retool your marketing and sales strategies so you can better connect with your customers and grow your business – even in the middle of a pandemic.

Diagnosing Abiotic Disorders
Jim Downer, University of California 

How Do You Know if You Have Trained Them?
Evan Beck, CTSP, Joseph Tree Service
This presentation is based off of Joseph Tree’s “Jedi Program.” A one year apprenticeship program that is designed to bring members in, and give them the tools and experience necessary to succeed as a professional arborist. This speech is designed to share concepts and ideas about the programs need, inception and implementation. We will also discuss learning styles, oversight options and ways to engage your team members throughout the process

TRADESHOW – 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

TRADESHOW – 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Mentoring: A Solution to Employee Problems and Growth 
Matt Hogarth, CTSP, Higher Ground Tree Care, LLC
Have you ever wondered how to hold employees accountable for personal and professional growth; motivate them to break bad habits that undermine their success; build stronger teams;  turn adversity into growth in your people; or how to keep your top performers? Dive into these and other “sticky” topics and share practical strategies that are front and center in the day-to-day world of tree work.

Nutrition and Fertilization for Trees and Shrubs
Zack Shier, Joseph Tree Service
Exploring the reason trees need nutrients, how they obtain those nutrients, and the relationship between soil and tree health. Breaking down the relationship between organic matter, available nutrients, and the modern fertilizers we use, often showing how some of our fertilization practices may be outdated, and in some cases harmful to trees. Using a balanced and comprehensive tree health program, we learn to use diagnostic testing, as well as all of the tools in our arborist toolbox to positively effect a tree’s health. Professionalizing the plant healthcare industry and adopting an education-based mindset helps not only satisfy our clients’ goals, while also do what is best and right for tree.

Beyond Training: A Complete Performance Improvement Process
Bill Owen, BCMA, CTSP, ArborWell
Many approaches to performance improvement focus exclusively on training. While there are many benefits to training, managers and leaders have numerous alternatives besides training in order to improve overall performance.  The performance improvement elements discussed in this presentation focus on organizational and management aspects that affect employee performance.

Take the Lead and Inspire Your Crew
David Joseph, Joseph Tree, LLC
How can a leader inspire crew members, with different roles and responsibilities, to work together towards a common goal? There are two dynamics here – those doing the leading and those being led. Each has a critical role. David Joseph, Co-Owner of Joseph Tree and a Captain with Columbus Division Fire, discusses how the foundation of any organization is effective leadership. Learn successful leadership methods to help you bridge the gap.

Aerial Rescue
Travis Vickerson, CTSP, QCL, Chippers, Inc.
In this presentation we will look at the information that came from the first Aerial Rescue Symposium, focusing on the incident and how we respond creates the outcomes. We will look at patient assessment and decision making that occurs in the rescue process, working with first responders to facilitate a harmonious scene, and what happens once the patient leaves the scene.

Friday, January 15th

Building a Career Path
Mark Chisholm, CTSP, Aspen Tree Expert

Importance of Climbing and Rigging Gear Inspections
Craig Bachmann, Tree 133 LLC
Tree company owners/managers are overloaded with demands of the business. Time is money and crews need to be in the field. This means gear inspection is often postponed in favor of production. Another challenge is suspect climbing gear available on the internet – climbers are trusting their lives to potentially dangerous equipment. In an industry with recognized hazards, who is responsible for the fall protection equipment of climber employees? How can we better manage these risks to protect our employees and our businesses? Dig into the results of research with industry experts, including business leaders, risk managers, regulators and insurers.

Urban Rigging
Lawrence Schultz, Pfanner Man
An in depth real life analysis of the challenges and considerations encountered in the concrete jungle. Rope rigging is the most demanding and technical type of work an arborist will encounter, especially when the space is limited and the targets are close. The fundamentals of the techniques we learn become the building blocks of the plan we construct to safely take apart each arboricultural puzzle we encounter. So how do we use those fundamentals to figure out the toughest puzzles in the tightest spaces? We have to apply our knowledge creatively. In this course we will take a look at unique combinations of those same old tried and true building blocks to accomplish the seemingly impossible.

TRADESHOW – 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

Incidental Line Clearance
Tim Walsh, CTSP, The Davey Tree Expert
The ANSI Z133 section that saw the most significant changes in the 2017 revision, and is causing the most confusion is Section 4, Electrical Hazards. During the 2017 revision cycle of the ANSI Z133, Federal OSHA made major changes to the standard that primarily effects the line clearance sector of our profession.

We will review and discuss the most important changes in sections 4.1, 4.2, and 4.3 with a focus on section 4.2, Incidental Line Clearance.

This presentation is not intended to be an interpretation of the standard in any way. Nor is it intended to be a substitute for the standard itself.   It’s meant merely to be an overview of some of the changes.

Life Skills for Crews on the Edge
Erick Palacios, CTSP, Mowbrays Tree Service
Our industry has always been high risk, on the edge of the top 10 most dangerous careers in the world. You add to that Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Fires, pandemics, working long fatigued stressful hours away from home and family, personal problems and complex tree problems that require critical thinking and all this adds up to an even more hazardous profession. To keep the industrial complex infrastructure going and make civilized life easier for all of us, requires high level teams. And these teams require, high level People. A formal education along with hands on experience is great, but high level people have these other 3 qualities (Life Skills, People Skills and Customer Service) qualities lost in corporate America now in these days. Together we will share ideas and concepts to help you sharpen these skills or qualities to help a teams on the edge become elite teams and not only become more successful but more valuable and prepare you for more high level projects in this wonderful, exciting and most rewarding industry of Arboriculture.

A Brand New Event!

A Brand New Event!



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