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





Global Perspective





Global Perspective





Global Perspective





Global Perspective

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.

Who We Are

Support Team


Leslie Berckes

Executive Director

Michelle Sutton

City Trees Editor

Scott Altenhoff

Urban and Community Forestry Assistance Program
State of Oregon

David Sivyer

Acting National Program Manager
Urban and Community Forestry

Board of Directors

Earl Eutsler

Associate Director/State Forester Washington, DC

Rachel Habig-Myers

Urban Forester Fairfax County, VA

Sam Oludunfe

Past President
Open Space Manager/City Forester Chula Vista, CA

Darren Green

Landscape Architect
City of Alexandria, LA

Jamie King

University Arborist
Virginia Tech

David Lefcourt

City Arborist/Tree Warden
Cambridge, MA

Michael Martini

Urban Forestry Consultant
PlanIt Geo

Julianne Schieffer

Extension Educator
Regional Urban Forester Penn State University

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, reach out to us on the contact page.

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.

UCFS is actively recruiting committee members!

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.

UCFS is actively recruiting committee members!

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.

UCFS is actively recruiting committee members!

Membership Committee

Develop initiatives and strategies to increase and enhance membership.

Julianne Schieffer – Chair/Board Liaison

Dorothy Abeyta

Misty Booth

Danielle Gift

Rachel Habig-Myers

David Sivyer

Accreditation Committee​

Advance the Accreditation Program, develop marketing plan, and increase visibility of the program and its principles.

Scott Altenhoff, Chair/Board Liaison

ANSI Standards

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

ANSI Z133 Rep – Jamie King Chair/Board Liaison

ANSI A300 Rep – Sam Olundunfe

Conference Committee

Steward annual conference, develop and deliver educational content at the annual conference, support sponsors and exhibitors.

Steve Harris – Chair

Jamie King – Board Liaison

Dorothy Abeyta

Kieran Hunt

Josh Petter

Cindi Sullivan

Arborist Exchange Committee

Promote Arborist Exchange program, solicit sponsors, coordinate fundraising events.

Kieran Hunt – Chair

Michael Martini – Board Liaison

Terry Flanagan

Doug Still

UCFS State Liaisons

Develop and support State/Provincial liaisons whose role in turn is to represent UCFS on State Urban and Community Forestry Councils and to support peer-to-peer connection and learning opportunities at the state/provincial level.

Dorothy Abeyta – Co-Chair

David Sivyer – Co-Chair

Nominations Committee

Identify and recommend potential board members, coordinate election procedures.

Rachel Habig Myers – Chair/Board Liaison

Jeremy Barrick

Erica Smith

Editorial Review Committee

Provide editorial oversight of City Trees, proof City Trees, support advertisers

Allison Craig – Chair 

Michelle Sutton – Editor

Adrina Bardekjian

Rachel Barker

Felipe Alberto Fuentes Ramirez

Sitara Gare

Jamie Kirby

Brett O’Brien

Nadia Pupa

Tami Sadonoja

Jeff Shimonski

David Sivyer

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.