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Mayor Fischer accepts “Tree City USA” awards at Louisville Arbor Day Festival

Friday April 20, 2012

Louisville has been recognized by the nonprofit Arbor Day Foundation as a Tree City USA community for its commitment to urban forestry.  It is the 11th year Louisville has earned this recognition.  Mayor Greg Fischer accepted the award on behalf of the city at the Louisville Arbor Day Festival, held today at Shawnee Park.

Louisville also received a Tree City USA Growth Award – the first time it has achieved this award – for demonstrating progress in its community forestry program.  This award honors environmental improvement and higher levels of tree care in Tree City USA communities.

“Being named a Tree City USA for the eleventh year demonstrates that this community has made it a priority to plant and nurture trees and has made great strides in doing so,” said Mayor Fischer.  “Achieving the Growth Award recognizes that we are building on that progress and moving in the right direction.” 

The Tree City USA program is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the National Association of State Foresters and the USDA Forest Service.  Presenting the awards was Peter Barber, Urban and Community Forestry Partnership Coordinator for Kentucky’s Division of Forestry.

Joining the Mayor at Shawnee Park were members of the newly created Louisville Metro Tree Advisory Commission, 5th District Metro Councilwoman Cheri Bryant Hamilton, local tree company volunteers donating their services at the park in support of the Mayor’s Give-a-Day Week of Service and more than 100 students from Whitney Young Elementary School who engaged in environmental education activities, including tree plantings.  The program also recognized the Louisville Downtown Lions Club for its $1500 gift toward tree plantings along the Olmsted Parkways. 

“Communities that are honored with a Tree City USA designation and Growth Award make a strong commitment to planting and caring for trees, and we applaud their efforts,” said John Rosenow, chief executive and founder of the Arbor Day Foundation.  “We also commend a community’s elected officials, volunteers and its citizens for providing needed care for its trees.  They recognize that trees provide numerous environmental, economical, and health benefits for the community every day."