COLUMBIA, Mo. - The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Community Forester Ann Koenig recently returned from Knoxville, Tenn., where the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) awarded her its True Professional of Arboriculture award for 2019.
The ISA True Professional award honors arborists and tree-care professionals from around the world for their positive impact in their communities and on the tree-care industry.
Koenig earned a B.S. in forestry from the University of Missouri. She began working with MDC in 1997 where she works on public and private lands and oversees the central region’s community forestry program. As a community forester, Koenig is qualified through the ISA in tree risk assessment and as a certified arborist. She specializes in the health and sustainability of trees in our cities and towns, working with community leaders to foster appreciation for the functional, cost-saving benefits of trees and urban green spaces as infrastructure assets.
At MDC, Koenig has collaborated with national Arbor Day Foundation programs benefitting local cities, campuses, and utilities. She serves on the Missouri Community Forestry Council and manages Tree Resource and Improvement Management (TRIM) grants across the region.
Koenig created MDC’s Trees Work campaign which provides comprehensive resources for professionals and citizens to find information on how Missouri’s trees benefit individuals and communities. The campaign promotes sound forest management practices and reminds Missourians that if you care for the trees around you, those trees will work for you.
Koenig’s passion for trees and her commitment to professional development also led her to competitive tree climbing. A six-time regional champion, she became the first woman from the Midwest to compete at the international level, where she has competed four times.
Koenig was recognized as one of five individuals selected to receive the True Professional of Arboriculture award on Aug. 12 at the ISA Annual International Conference and Trade Show in Knoxville, Tenn.
“Receiving the True Professional of Arboriculture award is an incredibly proud moment and a huge highlight for me,” said Koenig.
Learn more about MDC’s community forestry program at research.mdc.mo.gov/project/community-trees, explore Trees Work resources at treeswork.org, and find more information on forestry in Missouri at mdc.mo.gov/trees-plants.