Summer has begun and the unseasonal high summer temps are early. The last several weeks I have been involved in an email thread regarding the Chapter’s Tree Climbing Championship (TCC) and a Certified Tree Worker Skills test that will be held in Boise, Idaho during the Annual Training Conference (ATC), on Friday, September 16. The ATC committee is working hard putting together the event and the getting the needed volunteers. This includes getting approved CTW evaluators lined up. This thread put into motion a realization that the Chapter and board has lacked commitment and understanding of the time and effort it takes from the amazing volunteers who step forward to put the TCC and CTW events together. The Regional TCCs in Seattle and Portland have the same issues.
Every year we get about a month or two out before we start the process of organizing the event. Those individuals who step up then take on the tasks of looking for a park to have the TCC, and locating the TCC trailer (which can be time consuming in itself, only to find that the entire trailer has been purged again and needs to be restocked). The list of tasks goes on and on. I want to put a shout out to all those who have organized our TCCs and done a great job pulling them all together every year, many times with little support from the Chapter and/or members.
At our May meeting, we as a Board voted to make a change and step up as a Chapter and support the events. The Certification Director will now oversee the TCC as part of the position’s job description. We are putting together a stipend plan for individuals who organize the events to help cover the personal time it takes to get them off the ground. In addition, Patty Williams and I are putting together a set of basic TCC guidelines with lists of sponsors, event judges, techs, timers, and all other volunteer needs. My goals are to find an individual who will take this on, provide them a stipend, develop a list of individuals in all regions who will take ownership of one of the TCC events, and develop a team that handles set-up and tear down at every event. More to come as this gets more defined!