2023 Board of Directors:
Kyle Albee, Bill Allen, Jennifer Cassidy, Nathan Hoffmann, Jacob Holzberg-Pill, Steve Rivard, Thomas Roland, Margaret Skinner, and Warren Spinner
- President – Margaret Skinner
- Vice-President – Tom Roland
- Treasurer and Webmaster – Jennifer Cassidy
- Scribe and Communications – Steve Rivard
Board Member Bios
Kyle is a 7th generation Vermonter who grew up in Waterbury Center and graduated with business degrees from Champlain College and Saint Michaels. For the past 25 years, he has worked as the Senior Underwriter at North Star Leasing in Burlington. His love of trees sprang from walking the woods nightly after school and experiencing the relaxing effect trees will have on our soul. Kyle joined Branch Out Burlington! over 15 years ago. He is a believer in the saying “Grow Where You are Planted.” Kyle, utilizing his business acumen, helped found the Branch Out Burlington! Tree Sale now entering its 15th year. Over this period, thousands of 6-foot branched bare root trees have been sold or given away to individuals and nonprofits all over Chittenden County and beyond. In fact, Kyle’s willing to bet that if there is not a Branch Out Burlington! tree in your yard there’s one planted very close by.
Kyle lives in South Burlington with his wife Starr and in his free time, takes care of the Branch Out Burlington! seedling nursery, and roams the woods of the Northeast Kingdom from their camp in West Charleston.
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.
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.
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.
A Buckeye (no, not a horse chestnut) by birth, Tom Roland grew up in southern Ohio. As a child he frequently explored local forests with his father, an amateur arborist and fine woodworker. In 1978, after residency training in Utah, he moved to Charlotte, Vermont. There, he and his family purchased 20 acres, built a home and planted over a hundred trees. A young Bill Allen (BOB! Board member) helped them create a beautiful landscape including a katsura (now 40-ft tall), a buckeye, pin oaks, white oak and tulip trees. After retirement as a radiation oncologist at UVM, Tom and Molly moved to Burlington where he still enjoys gardening and landscaping, hiking and biking, and playing pickle ball with his two grandsons. He and his wife have two children and four grandchildren, all excellent tree climbers. He is honored to be a BOB! Board member and appreciates the opportunity to help fulfill its mission.
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.
Former Board Members: