The Tree Wardens' Association of Connecticut has a membership of around 150 individuals from across the state, primarily Tree Wardens, but also representing the municipal, arboriculture, forestry, and horticultural fields. This is certainly not a requirement though and all are welcome to join. Additionally, members are encouraged to get involved with the various committees that make up the Association.
Every city and town in Connecticut must have an appointed tree warden (Connecticut General Statutes Section 23-58). The legislative intent of this statute is to assure that municipalities maintain, care and protect a valuable and essential natural resource - municipally owned trees.
Trees cover most of the state, to such an extent that they are often taken for granted. Until there is a crisis of some sort, most people do not think about the benefits trees provide us, and certainly most people do not realize that trees under public ownership require maintenance, care, monitoring, and sometimes removal. Municipal trees enhance the favorable business climate in our business areas; they reduce noise, air, and visual pollution; they increase tourists image of Connecticut as they drive throughout our state; they slow rainfall decreasing soil erosion and non-point source pollution; they cool our homes, businesses, recreation areas, and provide wildlife habitat.
It falls upon the shoulders of the municipal tree warden to see to it that public trees are maintained properly, removed if deemed hazardous, and replaced. This is a big responsibility, one that requires the tree warden to be as knowledgeable about tree biology, maintenance, and public affairs as possible. The more a tree warden knows about arboriculture, tree biology, tree structure and function, insects and disease, proper pruning practices, tree selection, tree planting, meeting management, public affairs, and tree law, the better they will be able to perform their duties.
A Connecticut municipal tree warden is arguably the most important human component of a city or town’s community forestry program. That state law requires a tree warden to be appointed in each Connecticut municipality is widely known. But beyond this simple fact, there are many misconceptions about the position. A community in Connecticut cannot conduct an effective community forestry program without the participation, perhaps even the leadership, of a well-qualified, active tree warden.
What is the role of the Tree Warden?
Each municipality in the state of Connecticut is required to have an appointed Tree Warden who may in turn appoint any number of Deputy Tree Wardens as necessary. The Tree Warden is responsible for managing trees in public spaces and along roads with public safety as the top priority, but at the same time balancing the environmental and aesthetic benefits of trees. Chapter 451 Sec. 23-59 of the Connecticut General Statutes further defines the roles and qualifications of a Tree Warden.
History of the Ct tree wardens' association
|Roy Cavanaugh, Waterbury
|John Lawlor, Meriden
|Kelly Kerrigan, Stratford
|Allyn Tarbell, East Hartford
|Leo Kelly, West Haven