The UCFS, formerly the Society of Municipal Arborists, builds the confidence, competence and camaraderie of all professionals who manage trees and forests to create and sustain more livable communities.

We Value A Global Perspective Service Innovation Integrity Inclusivity

Our Objectives

Promote and improve the practice of professional municipal arboriculture.

Promote public awareness of the beautification of urban areas through proper arboricultural practices.

Recommend and uphold a Code of Ethics.

Initiate and support scientific investigation of problems concerned with municipal arboriculture.

Stimulate greater interest in the planting and presentation of shade trees and landscape plants.

Sponsor an annual meeting and trade show devoted to the presentation and exchange of information of value to arboriculture.

Seeking UCFS Board Members

Would you make a great UCFS Board Member? Nominations are due September 2, 2024.

The UCFS Nominations Committee is soliciting qualified UCFS Members to help the organization deliver on its mission to grow the competence, confidence, and camaraderie of all professionals who grow and care for community forests!

Would you or someone you know make a great board member for UCFS? Our organization has been a sound and steady presence since 1964, helping people speak for the trees. A new UCFS Strategic Plan, an increased understanding of the value of urban forestry, and a historic moment for urban forestry funding makes now an especially exciting time to serve as a board member. 

After submitting a nomination, a UCFS team member will be in touch about eligibility and next steps. Questions? Reach out to Leslie Berckes, UCFS Executive Director at

Who We Are

Board of Directors

Our Roots

Founded in 1964 as the Society of Municipal Arborists, the UCFS is an organization of municipal arborists and urban foresters. Our membership also includes commercial firms, nonprofits, tree boards, tree wardens, allied professionals, and citizens who actively practice or support some facet of municipal forestry.

A professional affiliate of the International Society of Arboriculture, the UCFS has members from across North America and beyond. Through our magazine, City Trees, our conferences, our website and our many active members, we strive to create networking and educational opportunities that promote the sound, professional management of a vital and invaluable resource.


UCFS committees are of vital importance to the work of the organization. Each committee helps UCFS advance its mission of building the confidence, competence, and camaraderie for all urban forestry and municipal arboriculture professionals. Members are invited to serve on committees. If you have interest in serving on any of these committees, please fill out the Committee Interest Form.

Young and Emerging Professionals

The committee’s mission is to engage young and emerging professionals age 35 and under. UCFS has a large student membership-base and the organization has a goal to grow the next generation of urban foresters, this committee will allow UCFS to hear and learn from the leaders of tomorrow.

Industry Trends Committee

The goals of this committee are to advise on and monitor the trends impacting the urban forestry and municipal arboriculture profession. It serves as a sounding board for the UCFS staff to help provide guidance when asked about membership’s stance on certain issues. The committee can provide guidance on any number of things such as BMPs, standards, strategic partnerships, etc. Effort is taken to recruit people from various populations, regions, etc. so that broad member representation is maintained.

Professional Development Committee

The primary mission of the  Professional Development committee is to ensure individual UCFS members have the support they need plus pushing the individual to grow to new heights. This group brings together existing committees and programs of Arborist Exchange, Mentoring, MFI, the UCFS Learning Series. The committee supports and pushes for more people to achieve the ISA Municipal Specialist certification and overall support professional certification.

Outreach Committee

The Outreach committee takes a marketing focus to their work. Committee members work to build and promote the UCFS organization and the resources the organization offers to the profession and professionals. This committee advises on the membership structure, supports and welcomes new members, supports the annual UCFS award process, and any other efforts that would support the recruitment of new members and support current members.

ANSI Standards

Compile library of industry standards, solicit member feedback, promote and evaluate.

ANSI A300 Rep  Gordon Mann, California 
ANSI Z133 Rep – Steven Traylor, Virginia 

Conference Committee

The conference committees’ goals are to develop and deliver the programming necessary for UCFS’s annual conference and tradeshow. The committee manages the timeline of events, establishes a conference theme, solicits presentations, supports exhibitors, the silent auction, and the Fun Run. They work with Outreach committee for the annual awards celebration.

Chair  – Steve Harris, Syracuse, New York

Nominations Committee

The Nominations Committee follows the election schedule as laid out in UCFS’s bylaws, promotes the opportunity for UCFS Board service, and seeks nominees for open Board member positions and proposes a slate of candidates for President, Vice-President and Treasurer positions.

Editorial Review Committee

The Editorial Review Committee (ERC) is responsible for the content, tone, and approach of City Trees. ERC members vet story ideas, review content for accuracy, and provide their perspectives on if story ideas are inline with the goals of UCFS and City Trees. UCFS’s City Trees editor is in charge of working with the committee.

Chair – Allison Craig, Mississauga, Ontario

Organizational Overview

The Urban and Community Forestry Society is a 501(c)6 membership-based organization. The organization serves all professionals who manage trees in communities across the world. The following information is provided as an overview of the organization, its membership base, and more.

Our Bylaws

The UCFS bylaws outline how the organization operates including membership, meetings, the board of directors, officers, committees of the board, the role of the executive director, ethics, and more. Click the link below to download the UCFS bylaws. The UCFS bylaws were amended, voted on by membership, and effective as of January 1, 2023.

Our Code of Ethics

The Urban and Community Forestry Society and its members adhere to a Code of Ethics so that we might all promote the highest levels of professionalism within the organization and for the trees and people we serve. Click on the link below to read the UFCS Code of Ethics.


Our Strategic Plan

In early 2023, the UCFS Board of Directors and organizational staff developed a strategic plan intended to guide the organization over the next several years. Each goal and its subsequent operational steps are in service of UCFS members and, ultimately, designed to help elevate the work we do each day to grow and sustain more trees for livable communities.