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UAA Members spent the month of May nominating candidates for the Board of Directors election in July. The Board is responsible for sustainable operations of the UAA, including finances, day-to-day operations and the future direction of the association.

UAA Executive Director Dennis Fallon says it is critical for the organization to have an effective Board.

“The UAA does not exist without the Board of Directors,” says Fallon. “Having industry leadership willing to invest their time, talent, and passion for advancing others is paramount to our success.”

Each Board member also champions a UAA committee and is responsible for mentoring and coaching that committee’s Chair as well as the Co-Chair: this includes, meeting performance, agenda building, establishing annual goals, outcomes, visioning, and setting committee performance metrics. Committee champions meet every other month to discuss their various committees and their activities and progress.

“The Board is made up of UAA members who exist to serve UAA members,” says UAA President Brandon Hughson. “They are arborists, educators, utility employees – both IOU and Co-Op – and tree company/contractor employees. They volunteer their time to share their knowledge and experience while engaging with industry partners and our members.”

The executive committee, which is the President, Vice President, the President-Elect, and the Treasurer meet every month for a broad overview of all UAA events, activities, and performance. In addition to the regular board and committee meetings, directors meet twice a year for strategic planning. This is an in-person meeting that usually follows the Trees & Utilities

conference and the UVM Managers Summit. They met in Colorado this year to set the stage for strategic planning in 2025. UAA President Brandon Hughson says the Board plans to focus on several key areas in the coming year.

“We’re looking to identify future leaders and attract people to our industry through outreach such as the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point degree program, the Pro-UVM Certification program, community college programs and curriculum, and the UAA accreditation process,” says Hughson.

“We plan to embrace the growing diversity of thought through industry affinity groups. We want each UAA committee to partner with one outside organization, (i.e. UCFA or TCIA), in addition to increasing our international outreach and expanding our Spanish language offerings.”

The UAA is grateful to Board Members – past and present – whose dedication has led the association to where it is today:

  • President Brandon Hughson
  • Past President Tim Walsh
  • President-Elect Matt Goff
  • Vice President Josh Beaver
  • Treasurer Jim Neeser
  • Director Kevin Puls
  • Director Jodie Braskich
  • Director Dr. Robert Vanderhoof
  • Director Craig Kelly
  • Director Amanda Opp
  • Director Sara Dreiser

“In my time with the Utility Arborist Association Board, I’ve encountered incredibly passionate and knowledgeable professionals dedicated to advancing our field for the betterment of utilities, communities, and the environment,” says Director Jodie Braskich. “We help shape the future of utility vegetation management.”

Get to know the team here, and don’t forget to vote for a new vice-president and two directors in the upcoming Board election July 15 – August 1.