Staff & Board

Staff

Patty Williams

Executive Director

As PNW-ISA’s Executive Director since January 2002, Patty uses the Board of Directors' strategic vision to direct staff members, committees, and other volunteers. She holds a Master of Science degree in Agribusiness Economics from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. She resides in Carlton, Oregon.

Contact Information

  • Email: pwilliams@pnwisa.org

Melissa Amrhein

Education Program Manager

Melissa Amrhein

Melissa has an undergraduate degree in Community, Environment, and Planning and graduate degrees in Forest Resources and Public Administration from the University of Washington. When she is not working on the Continuing Education Program, Melissa enjoys spending time with her husband and daughter, doing yoga, and exploring the great outdoors of the Pacific Northwest.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 206-617-8052
  • Email: melissa@pnwisa.org

Margo Thorp

Education Program Coordinator

Margo graduated from Western Washington University with a Bachelor of Arts in Education, focusing on science education in the K-8 classroom. She has worked as a Coordinator for the UW – Friday Harbor Labs Science Outreach Program and as a Program Coordinator with the University of Washington managing operations for degrees, certificates, and courses focused on the environment, engineering, and technology.

For the past four years, Margo has participated in Horticulture courses at Edmonds Community College with a general focus on arboriculture, pruning, and tree care. She is currently spending a year working as an intern with the Elisabeth C. Miller Botanical Garden in the Seattle area. Outside of work Margo enjoys skate skiing, hiking, boating, gardening, and baking.

Contact Information

  • Email: margo@pnwisa.org

Sharon Korte

Member Services Coordinator

Image of Sharon Korte, a white woman with blond, shoulder-length hair, wearing a black sleeveless shirt. She is standing in front of some tall flowers and a white fence.

Sharon Korte joined the  Pacific Northwest chapter as the Member Services Coordinator in June 2019. Sharon has 7+ years of experience with the international Society of Arboriculture and held roles such as Credentialing Manager and Customer Relations Manager. She has a solid foundational knowledge of membership, credentialing, and arboriculture programming.
Sharon is an avid gardener with a love for flowers. She is a self-proclaimed book-a-holic - reading upwards of 50+ books per year.

Sharon lives in Tuscola, IL with her husband Chris and their two American Eskimo dogs, Crystal and Roxxie.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 503.874.8263
  • Email: memberservices@pnwisa.org

Board of Directors

Philip Bennett

President

City of Snoqualmie and City of Clyde Hill, in Snoqualmie, WA

Phil Bennett is Urban Forester for the City of Snoqualmie, and City Arborist for the City of Clyde Hill.

Phil is a graduate of the University of Wales, Aberystwyth with a BA in English literature, and is an ISA Certified Arborist, Municipal Specialist, qualified tree risk assessor and former environmental educator. Phil is actively engaged in the disciplines of arboriculture: Planting,mulching, pruning, treating diseases, climbing, and removing trees. Phil is convinced that not only is this the best job in the world, it’s also making the world a better place.

When not working on trees, Phil spends time with his very patient and understanding wife, Deborah, his two sons Peter and Denzil, and his stepdaughter Lucy.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 206-491-0031
  • Email: pbennettarborist@gmail.com

Charles Ray

President Elect

Urban Forester with the City of Vancouver, in Vancouver, WA

Charles Ray is the Urban Forester with the City of Vancouver, Washington. Charles is a graduate from the Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resources. He is certified through the International Society of Arboriculture as an Arborist and Municipal Specialist. He has worked in both the municipal and commercial arboriculture fields before starting with the City of Vancouver in 2001.

As President Elect, Charles is dedicated to supporting the President and working with the Board of Directors, staff and membership to further the chapter’s mission. Prior to becoming President Elect, Charles served as the PNW-ISA Governance Director.

When not at work Charles spends time with his family, relaxing, laughing, practicing the art of Wing Chun and enjoys good music and coffee.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 360-487-8328
  • Email: charles.ray@cityofvancouver.us

Ian Scott

Secretary

Davey Resource Group, in Shoreline, WA

Ian Scott, a white man with dark hair, a salt-and-pepper beard and glasses.

Ian Scott is a Regional Manager and urban forestry specialist based out of Shoreline, Washington. He has served clients as part of the Davey Resource Group team throughout the Western U.S. and Canada since 1998. He works with many cities to develop urban forest management consulting solutions, deliver urban tree inventories, and provide urban tree canopy assessments.  Ian has a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry and Environmental Management from the University of New Brunswick, Canada. He is an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist with a Tree Risk Assessment Qualification. He is a 2009 graduate of the Municipal Forestry Institute.

Outside of work, Ian spends time with his family exploring the Puget Sound, volunteering in his community, and supporting local art initiatives.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 206.714.3147
  • Email: ian.scott@davey.com

Kris Josey

Treasurer

ArborCare Resources, Inc., in Hailey, ID

Kris Josey graduated from University of Colorado, Boulder with a BS in Accounting in May 1989. Upon graduation she worked as a staff accountant with Coopers & Lybrand’s Denver, Colorado office from June 1989 to November 1992. She obtained her CPA license in 1992. Later that year, she moved to Idaho and worked in a local accounting office until June 1996 when she left public practice to be a stay at home mom with her 2 young sons. In early 1997, she and her husband, Bill, combined her business/accounting knowledge with his tree care knowledge to start their family business ArborCare Resources, Inc.  Kris continues to be actively involved with the management of the business.

In 2003 Kris was appointed to the ISA’s finance committee and in 2014 she joined ISA’s conference and events committee. Her goal as the Treasurer for the PNW Chapter is to provide a business perspective to the Board as it explores new initiatives and continues to grow membership services for all members.

In her free time she is a regular at the local CrossFit gym or outside enjoying the Sun Valley area skiing/snowboarding, hiking, or mountain biking.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 208-788-1611 ext. 102
  • Email: kris.josey@me.com

Anna Heckman

Member Services

Anna’s education in forest ecology, and urban horticulture led her to a career in natural area management and arboriculture.  Her career has grown her passion for understanding research and bridging the communication gaps between science and management.  Anna has over 15 years of service in government employment ranging from a backcountry field technician to a plant ecologist, vegetation manager to an urban forester.  Anna recently found a great fit applying her skill set as a consulting arborist with Urban Forestry Services Inc.

When not watching baseball, fishing, or listening to great music with her family, you can find Anna trekking through the mountains with her dog, biking through town, playing in the snow or volunteering with habitat restoration organizations.

Contact Information

  • Email: Heckman.ecologist@gmail.com

Kurt Fickeisen

Certification

Symbiosis Tree Care LLC, in Seattle, Washington

Kurt is the owner of Symbiosis Tree Care in Seattle Washington and has worked in arboriculture since 1989. While most work takes place in the greater Seattle area, Kurt spent three years working for a tree service in Boulder Colorado.

Work in these areas has expanded his knowledge of how tree growth patterns can vary from region to region. The primary focus of work is as a Consulting Arborist.

Prior to work in arboriculture, Kurt graduated from the University of Idaho.

In his free time Kurt likes to hike, climb and backcountry ski. In addition, mountaineering from Alaska to California has been part of his life since a young age.

Micki McNaughton

Continuing Education Director

Arborea, LLC, in Olympia, WA

I own and operate Arborea, LLC, as an urban forestry planning and programming consultant. I am also currently employed as an Urban Forestry Special Project Coordinator for the Washington State Dept. of Natural Resources Urban and Community Forest Program. I am an ISA Certified Arborist and Municipal Specialist, and a graduate of the Municipal Foresters Institute as well as the Pacific Northwest Community Tree Management Institute.

I am passionate about the role of trees in our lives and our world, and a strong proponent of continuing education for arborists and urban foresters. I am excited to have this opportunity to help build the Chapter’s education program, to provide tools and skills to help us as arborists evolve with the changing landscape around us.

I enjoy traveling with my partner by boat and by motorcycle. Other favorite activities include sailing, gardening and cooking, and a current obsession is knitting!

Contact Information

  • Phone: 360.790.6294
  • Email: mickimcn@gmail.com

Jon Pywell

Public Outreach Director

Urban Forester, City of Corvallis Parks & Recreation, in Corvallis, OR

Jon Pywell is a graduate of the University of Florida with a degree in
Natural Resources. He is a Board Certified Master Arborist and
Municipal Specialist and is TRAQ certified. As the Urban Forster for the
City of Corvallis, Oregon he maintains an inventory of approximately
15,000 street trees and oversees restoration projects in over 1,200
acres of natural areas. This diverse urban forest presents new
challenges daily and gives Jon a constant source of inspiration and
questions about arboriculture, trees and the people who live among
them.

As the incoming Public Outreach Director, Jon is excited to work with
the Board of Directors, Staff and Membership at PNW-ISA to increase
the visibility and connectedness of our ISA chapter through
partnerships with our colleagues in allied professional organizations,
greater outreach to the public beyond and serving the membership
through improved sharing of the latest in science and b.m.ps.
When not at work Jon spends time with his wife and his four legged
children hiking, mountain biking and exploring the world around them.

Contact Information

  • Email: Jonathan.pywell@corvallisoregon.gov

Nadia Chan

Governance Director

Hi, my name is Nadia Chan and I was elected to the Board in September 2013 as the Director of Public Outreach. I have been a Certified Arborist since 2005 and a Certified Tree Risk Assessor since 2007. I have a Bachelor of Science in Forestry and currently work for the City of Surrey as the City’s Natural Areas Coordinator. My current job involves managing over 1500 ha (3700 acres) of natural areas in an urban environment. From the management of forest health, trail systems, invasive species and wildlife, my day-to-day work can be extremely varied. This can bring a lot of challenge, but also a lot of rewards!

I live in Vancouver, B.C with my husband and two children. In my spare time I enjoy gardening, playing soccer and hockey and spending time with family and friends.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 604-501-5167 (office)
  • Email: nchan@pnwisa.org

Dylan Saito

Editor

City of Portland Urban Forestry Division, in Portland, OR

Born and raised in Hawai’i, Dylan became very close with his natural environment.  His love for the surrounding landscape and the people that cared about it inspired him to eventually become the arborist he is has become. He is knowledgeable in all aspects of commercial arboriculture: as a grounds-person and as a climber, in rigging, consulting and sales, and for 10 years, as a crew leader.

For the last three years, he has been active in the municipal realm and has been working as a tree inspector with the City of Portland Urban Forestry Division. He assists with the development of the local tree ordinance, regulates permitting for all tree activities, and is a first responder to all "tree-mergencies" citywide.  He has also been a volunteer with the Pacific Northwest Chapter as a head judge for the regional climbing competitions for over 11 years.  His current credentials include Certified Arborist, TRAQ, FEMA Incident Command, Oregon Pesticide Handler, and EHAP.  

“I am grateful to have learned everything I know surrounding arboriculture in the Pacific Northwest, and I am very excited to be able to pass along what I’ve learned to the wider population. The Tree Community in our region has great impact on the entire Society of Arboriculture. Other areas of the globe look to the PNW for insight on how to better care for the world’s tree canopy. We have the opportunity to make changes to bring people and trees into the present.”

John Hushagen

ISA Council of Representatives

John has been an arborist since 1980 and a member of the ISA since 1984.  In 1987 he completed his Masters’ of Science in Urban Horticulture and co-founded Seattle Tree Preservation, Inc. He owned and operated this tree care company until its sale to Bartlett Tree Experts and his retirement in February 2018. He has been a certified arborist since 1992, and currently works part-time as a consulting arborist in the Seattle area.  He was elected to the PNW ISA Board in 1988 and served as vice president, president, and ISA representative until 1994.  After hiring the first paid chapter administrator in the early 90’s, and promoting the newly-minted Certified Arborist program, the growth of the PNW Chapter was phenomenal.

In over 30 years of running a tree care company, his greatest challenge was finding enough young men and women who wanted to work for a progressive and innovative company and make arboriculture their career.  John would like to work with the whole ISA to develop strategies for increasing the visibility of our industry, and recruiting a larger slice of the young work force that may or may not be college bound.

John lives in Shoreline, Washington, with Jan, his wife of nearly 38 years.  Together they tend a huge garden and enjoy traveling to S. California often to visit their granddaughters.  John sings in two choirs in Seattle and has been on three European choir tours in the last six years.  He has been known to turn well-known tunes into tree themed parodies.

Evan Sussman

TREE Fund Liaison

Sonshine Tree Care, in Stanwood, WA

Evan Sussman is the owner of Sonshine Tree Care in Stanwood, WA. Evan’s career in arboriculture began in the tropical climate of Hawai'i. In 2012 Evan moved to the Pacific Northwest.

Evan is an ISA Certified Arborist (WE-9274A), and ISA Qualified Tree Risk Assessor. He is actively involved in the furthering of the arboriculture profession in our chapter through community engagement, as a professional tree worker instructor, and in the development of apprenticeship programs.

Contact Information

  • Phone: 360.474.7787
  • Email: evan.sussman@pnwisa.org