2019 Board of Directors:
Kyle Albee, Bill Allen, Karla Ferrelli, Jacob Holzberg-Pill, Nancy Knox, Barbara Mines, Steve Rivard, Margaret Skinner, and Warren Spinner.
- President – Margaret Skinner
- Vice-President – Kyle Albee
- Treasurer and Webmaster – Karla Ferrelli
- Scribe and Communications – Barbara Mines
Board Member Bios
In 2018 I was honored to be invited to join the BOB! board of directors. As a graduate with a degree in Environmental Studies I have always appreciated our planet. Now, as a grandfather, I want to have a positive influence on future generations to appreciate not only our beautiful State of Vermont, but also to pay attention and be mindful on a global level to our ever-changing environment. I have been in the Nursey Sales/Landscape business for over 35 years and it has been wonderful to see our city of Burlington embracing BOB! in an unbelievably positive manner. It is inspiring and gratifying to be part of an organization so passionate and dedicated to the survivability of our urban forest. I am an avid gardener, fly fisherman, Mad River Glen share holder/skier, bird watcher, oyster shucker, yard sale extraordinaire.
I’m a better than average husband to Karen, father of three daughters, grandfather of three grandkids with more on the way. My favorite small garden tree is Stewartia pseudocamellia. My favorite conifer in my front yard is Sciadopitys verticillate.
Karla is the treasurer and has been involved in promoting Burlington’s urban forest for over 36 years. She was among the first volunteers who planted trees for the 1983 citywide greening initiative of then mayor Bernie Sanders. She was recruited in 1995 by the city arborist to establish a citizen tree group for Burlington and played a leadership role in founding Branch Out Burlington! (BOB! for short). She has remained an active member of the board ever since, serving in many administrative roles. As well as managing the BOB! website, she also plays a key part in our Annual Tree Sale. Over the years, she has contributed sweat equity in BOB!s tree planting activities, including community street tree planting and in the Burlington Community Tree Nursery. In addition to her work for BOB!, she has been an Extension Master Gardener for over 15 years and volunteers with educational events linked with that program when not caring for her beautiful home garden. She is also an avid cyclist and cross-country skier.
Jacob grew up in the hills of western Massachusetts chasing frogs and climbing trees. (Not much has changed except the location.) His work has focused on empowering individuals and groups through personal connection with the natural world. Jacob has taught ecology and land stewardship in many different venues where he aspires to promote deep ecological awareness, as well as a solutions-oriented approach when considering the needs of humans and the earth. Since moving to Burlington, Jacob has focused on becoming involved with land stewardship programs around the city. He has also taught classes at the Winter NOFA conference, the UVM Osher Life Long Learning Institute, Gardner’s Supply, and the Rokeby Museum, and was part of the first Master Naturalist cohort. Jacob loves working at the BOB tree Nursery and talking to people about trees.
Nancy grew up exploring the woods of suburban Connecticut and southern Vermont, and has always been curious about trees and forests. She studied Forestry and Plant & Soil Science at UVM (1979). She also has a Master’s degree from the Conway School of Landscape Design (1985). She worked for a landscape design/build company and then did site planning and project management for a local civil engineering firm for 15 years, as well as urban forestry consulting. She helped with community tree inventories after the great ice storm of 1998. Nancy began volunteering with Branch Out Burlington! in the late 90’s and represented volunteer tree groups on the state’s Urban Forestry Council for several years. She is also an Extension Master Gardener, a Master Naturalist, and a Master Composter intern. Nancy has organized our annual Tree Walks for over ten years, and loves to explore the wilds of Chittenden County in search of awesome trees.
Barbara has been on the Branch Out Burlington! board as scribe since December 1996. She has always loved nature and animals. It’s very important to her to give back to the causes she loves. After moving to Burlington in 1995 she began volunteering with BOB! To address her love of animals, about 7 years ago, Barbara became a volunteer with Green Mountain Animal Defenders, an animal protection organization. After serving on the Advisory Council, she is now on the GMAD board. Barbara spends quite a bit of time with her two cats, Ivan and Phantom, and enjoying their antics.
Originally from Newport Vermont, Steve grew up next door to the City Arborist, Warren (Jersey) Drown, who taught him, at a young age, the value of trees to the Urban Landscape. Steve furthered his education earning a degree in Business Administration from St Michael’s College, and most recently retired from a 27-year career in Transportation Management most recently with UPS Freight. He joined Branch Out Burlington! in January 2017, with a belief in the mission and desire to help increase the Urban Tree Canopy in the City of Burlington. He says he is routinely inspired by my co – volunteer’s efforts to do their best for our organization. I feel fortunate to work with such dedicated and thoughtful people. Steve resides in Williston Vermont with his wife Judith.
Margaret has been involved in supporting Burlington’s urban forest as a volunteer for over 30 years. She is a long-time resident of Burlington and for years helped maintain the Perkins Pier greenspace. She took it on “just because it needed to get done”. This led to her recruitment in 1995 to help establish a citizen tree group for Burlington. She was concerned that street trees were getting planted but sometimes died because they needed more care. She hoped to increase citizen involvement in the city’s trees. She played a leadership role in founding BOB! and remains active, serving as the president for many years. Her greatest achievement is BOB!’s Community Tree Nursery. It gives her immense pleasure to drive down Burlington’s streets and see the hundreds of trees that she had a hand in growing, which are now providing shade. It is a living legacy for her and all who have contributed to the care of the nursery trees. As an entomologist at the Univ. of Vermont for over 35 years, she is able to bring that expertise to care for the nursery and city trees. When she isn’t pulling a weed in the nursery or her garden, she is providing TLC to her favorite companion Jazmine, an energetic Jack Russel Terrier.
Warren has been involved from the inception of Branch Out Burlington! back in 1997. He served as an ex-officio board member while he was Burlington’s City Arborist, a position he held for 34 years. After retirement he continues to serve on the board. He is the volunteer Tree Warden in Essex Jct. and was a founding member of the Essex Tree Committee. He and the committee completed a Tree Inventory, Tree Policy and Tree Management Plan. He was instrumental in forging an association with that group and BOB! As a result, a few of the trees planted in the Burlington Community Tree Nursery are designated for Essex. He is an ISA and Massachusetts Certified Arborist and has worked in Commercial, Municipal, and Consulting Arboriculture since 1976. Warren has served as State Director, President and Certification Liaison for the New England Chapter – ISA. He is a member of the advisory board for the Arboriculture and Landscape Management program at Paul Smith’s College. He has been actively involved with the Vermont Urban & Community Forestry Program and is a current council member and past chair.
Past Board Member
Ann grew up in Vermont, exploring the woods and fields, always fascinated by views and trees. She received a Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture at University of Guelph in Ontario, and worked in Newfoundland for several years, then as the Garfield Weston landscape architect at the Royal Botanical Gardens in Ontario. She returned to Vermont and continued to work as a landscape architect until her retirement. She has served on the boards of the UVM Horticultural Farm and Branch Out Burlington, and is currently a member of the Shelburne Town Tree Committee.