City Trees

September/October 2019

City Trees is a premier publication focused on urban + community forestry. In each issue, you’ll learn how to best manage the trees in your community and more!

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Page 13 of 39

Board Member Profile: Owen Croy 14 CityTREES Owen Croy grew up with an affinity for the out- doors, hiking and camping in the forests of British Columbia, and scuba diving in coastal waters. To earn money for university, he worked on a farm near his home on Vancouver Island, where he learned to run equipment, clear brush, and carry out many labour-oriented outdoor tasks. After a year of general science at the University of British Columbia (UBC), he entered the faculty of forestry, drawn in during a recruitment day when they were showing off logger sports and drinking beer; this was the place for him! During his five- year BSF program, he took two-and-a-half years out to earn money and get some hands-on expe- rience in the forest industry. However, after doing traditional forestry work in remote areas of British Columbia and fighting off several million mos- quitos, he decided that he should become an urban forester, tucked into his own bed each night. The problem was, there was no urban forestry program at UBC. To further his interest, he applied for and was accepted into the UBC School of Landscape Architecture, where he took landscape design and horticulture courses while finishing off his forestry degree; this gave him an education that pointed firmly in the direction of urban forestry. After graduating, Owen joined the Plant Protection Program of Agriculture Canada, where he was involved in monitoring efforts for foreign insects and diseases and carrying out eradication proj- ects for quarantinable pests such as Asian gypsy moth. He also used his forestry and horticultural knowledge to carry out certification of lumber and nursery stock for export from Canada, and he supervised the inspection of plant products being imported into Canada. However, after eight years doing this type of work, he yearned for a posi- tion more directly connected to urban forestry. In 1992, Owen was hired as the City of Surrey, BC's first arborist while concurrently holding the position of its Superintendent of Park City-Wide Services. Surrey was rapidly growing then, as it is now, adding an average of 3500 new street trees, 1500 park shade trees, and an average of 40 ha (100 acres) of natural forest land each year. This growth, along with the lack of comprehensive Standing proudly atop a City of Surrey green roof. Photo courtesy of Owen Croy Owen (left, with David Lefcourt and Alex Nordquest) running in the annual SMA Conference Fun Run, Walk, or Watch that raises money for the Urban Forest Foundation. Photo by Steve Cothrel Hiking a trail in China. Photo courtesy

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