EAW 2023 San Diego, CA,
Who is Speaking?

Rory Anderson is an insurance broker at Rancho Mesa Insurance in San Diego, California. What is most unique about his career as an insurance professional is that he focuses on working with tree care companies.

They are building a network of like-minded tree care companies that value their dedication to the industry as well as the resources, relationships, tools, and strategies that are specific to the industry, which will make companies more competitive by way of better managing their total cost of risk. He is a second-generation insurance professional and grew up watching his dad dedicate his career to helping businesses with risk management and insurance. With a degree in business from California State University Long Beach, his dedication to the tree care industry, and his passion for helping businesses of all sizes, he is well-equipped to provide you with the most innovative and comprehensive solutions possible.

Megan is a professional trainer with an infectious enthusiasm for safety, as well as 20+ years of industry experience. ISA Certified Arborist, TCIA Certified Tree Care Professional, & SPRAT lvl 1 Rope Technician are a few of the qualifications she currently obtains, as well as both an Associates Degree in Forest Technology and a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry. She has worked for industry leading companies such as Husqvarna, Wright Tree Service, and SAI Communications before moving on to train independently,  at her company Upward Training & Development LLC.

Peter has been a member of the ANSI Z133 Committee since the late 80’s. He has been directly involved in OSHA standards-writing, enforcement actions, and alliances since 1994, serving on stakeholder groups or advisory committees to create responsible OSHA rules for arborists in California, Maryland, and Virginia, as well as federally.

Alison Herrell is an arborologist with Rainbow Ecoscience. She provides plant healthcare protocol training and technical support for Rainbow¹s clients (landscape and arborist professionals around the country). She holds a B.A. in Biology from Valparaiso University and an M.S. in Environmental Science from Indiana University. Alison is an ISA certified arborist, TRAQ holder, and pesticide applicator in OR and WA with over 10 years of experience, including tree climbing, plant healthcare applications, research, education, and sales.

Her lifelong love for nature blossomed into a profession after witnessing the Florida Tree Climbing Championship in 2008. Fueled by newfound inspiration, she pursued expertise in tree care, obtaining various certifications in the field.

Today, Danae thrives in her dream role, as an At-Height Business Developer at Redwing Rigging Solutions, providing innovative climbing and rigging equipment to small companies and large national accounts. Her work fosters safe and efficient tree care practices across the country, a perfect unity of her love for the outdoors and dedication to safety.

Danae’s story is a reminder that when passion meets profession, extraordinary things happen. Her journey in the tree care industry continues to be one marked by love, learning, and a ceaseless pursuit of excellence

A high-level leader in the tree care industry that worked for one of the largest commercial green companies in the US, Larry started in middle management and moved up to senior leadership, becoming the youngest vice president in the company’s history. He sold 80 million in commercial tree care in 11 years and helped create the sales structure for a 100M P/L within a 2.5B company. He left in 2020 with two other business partners to start the Arbor Group, one of the fastest-growing tree care companies in Southern California, with sales of seven million in 2022, after just two full years in business. He is passionate about people and trees and wanting to drive the industry to a higher level of success.

Drue Morris is currently the municipal arborist for a small city in Washington State where she works on development review, environmental regulations, and vegetation management for wildfire risk reduction. She holds an A.S. in Horticulture from Milwaukee Area Technical College with accompanying certificates in greenhouse production and arboriculture techniques. Drue is an ISA Certified Arborist Municipal Specialist, TRAQ holder, and Certified Tree Care Safety Professional.

Bob has more than 40 years of experience in the green industry, including many years as a practicing arborist. As the senior vice president of TCIA’s business support programs, Bob provides direction for TCIA accreditation programs, the Tree Care Industry Association Foundation (TCIAF) loss control program, workforce development, and all business support programs, including networking meetings and events. In addition, Bob serves as the secretary for the ANSI A300 tree care standards. Bob has served TCIA and its members since 1997.

Andrea Starbird came to arboriculture as a second career from a seemingly unrelated background. She has worked as both a consultant and sales arborist and currently works as an urban forestry consultant. Earlier this year, she co-founded the Seattle Arborist Association. Andrea is an ISA Certified Arborist Municipal Specialist and Qualified Tree Risk Assessor with expertise in development and residential consulting, advanced tree risk assessment as well as interpreting and writing tree code.

Pat has 20+ years of leadership experience building and growing teams of all sizes, specializing in startups and turnarounds. From the military to oil & gas, steel mills, food & beverage manufacturing, and now tree care, Pat’s success across multiple industries stems from a people-centric approach focused on culture and operational excellence. He has designed and implemented both safety and leadership development programs for multiple companies. Pat is a graduate of the US Military Academy and former Army Combat Engineer officer with deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq. He currently lives in Overland Park, Kansas with his wife and twin daughters, where he spends his free time learning all he can about arboriculture.

Former president; CEO Chippers Inc. 2010-2021; former chair & director TCIA Board 2015-2021; former Vistage Member & Lifetime Achievement Award Winner; TCIA Women in Tree Care Peer Group Leader (current); and TCIA Foundation Trustee.

Les is a safety professional with over 13 years of experience in the field. Since 2017, Hollis has served as a corporate safety director at Mountain F. Enterprises, Inc. (MFE), where he oversees safety programs and manages a safety department of 39 personnel. Prior to this role, Hollis was a safety coordinator, estimator/project manager, and business development specialist at MFE. Hollis has also held roles at Mountain Clearing & Brushing, Bjorkman Forestry, and Mountain Forestry. He has various certifications in arboriculture. He is the task chair of the Electrical Hazard section for ANSI Z133 Committee, and a member of the Utility Arborist Association Safety Committee. He is highly skilled in data analysis, GIS software, team management, strategic planning, communication, decision-making, conflict resolution, time management, writing, problem-solving, and critical thinking.

Joseph was born and raised in rural Ohio and moved to California in 2005. He likes to travel with his wife and enjoys surfing, yoga, and camping. He started his career as an arborist in 2006 and started Coastal Tree Care in 2013. In 2019 their company became accredited through TCIA. In 2022, they acquired another local tree care company, Rancho San Diego Tree Service, and in 2023 they merged together to become Rancho Coastal. They now have 30 employees and three locations.

Mark Shipp has spent nearly 30 years dedicated exclusively to serving the tree care and vegetation management industry.

Mark was the Founding Broker for the TCIA-endorsed insurance program, ArborMAX in the early 2000’s, and sat on the executive board for many years. He also helped architect the TCIA Accreditation program. Counterintuitive to other brokers focused solely on rate, Mark’s chief objective with the 200+ tree care companies he works with nationally has been to instill a safety culture within the organizations to help them manage their risk more effectively. This strategy has made a significant impact on those organizations, and significantly reduced their total cost of risk over the long run.

Due to his thought leadership, Mark was recently invited onto the Utility Arborist Association’s Safety Committee. Made possible by his expertise and representation in the industry, Mark has been a ‘market maker’ and built several exclusive programs for HUB Arbor Group clients which include proprietary offerings for General Liability, Auto, Excess Liability, and Contractor’s Equipment.

Most recently, Mark successfully launched a first-of-its-kind homogenous group captive for qualified tree care companies, Ascend.

After graduating with a Forestry degree from University of Wisconsin Stevens Point in 2003 and working as an arborist for a parks department, Eric joined his family’s insurance agency and began helping tree care companies grow and properly protect themselves. Seeing a need for a more specialized approach for the tree care industry, Eric and his team created the ArboRisk program around two basic principles:

  • To help every arborist get home safe each night.
  • To help tree care companies grow and professionalize.

Eric is a past president and recent recipient of the Wisconsin Arborist Association’s Honorary Life Membership Award as well as a member of TCIA, ISA and multiple ISA chapters.

Tom is a dynamic and versatile insurance program leader with the rare combination of specialty insurance and technology expertise. Tom leads NIP Group’s specialty programs division and has driven the development and growth of many differentiated insurance programs to address the unmet needs of customers and brokers. He has directed the large-scale transformation of the division’s underwriting platform with an all-embracing use of targeted data analytics to take on the right mix of risks and gain an edge over the market in pricing, risk selection, execution quality and speed. Tom is known for being full of energy and igniting passion to get the job done. Tom graduated from Monmouth University and is very active with his alma mater.

Mike is originally from the Philadelphia area and relocated to Hartford, Connecticut area about 25 years ago. He graduated from Shippensburg University with B.S. and B.A. in Marketing. He worked for two Philadelphia state Senators and a U.S. Congressman for five years before getting into the insurance field. He has 25 years’ of experience in the insurance industry with over 20+ in Commercial Lines Underwriting. He has 19 years at the Hartford working on the Arborist & Landscape Program in some shape or form in program management, management and is currently the program lead and executive underwriter for the Arborist & Landscape Program.

Mark has been married for 22 years to Kristen Park. He has a 15-year-old son Ryan and black lab named Kyla. His interests include skiing, golfing, and the weather. He is a big-time Philadelphia sports fan and sports fan in general.

We will be taking next year to reinvent EAW!

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Connect with
the TCIA Mobile App!

Download the TCIA mobile app and set up/log in with your TCIA account to keep the conversations going. Access Tree Care Industry-specific highlights on the newsfeed, message other tree care professionals on the app, and set up your agenda to never miss a thing. The app is free and a great resource for anyone attending the TCI EXPO 2021!

Connect with
the TCIA Mobile App!

Download the TCIA mobile app and set up/log in with your TCIA account to keep the conversations going. Access Tree Care Industry-specific highlights on the newsfeed, message other tree care professionals on the app, and set up your agenda to never miss a thing. The app is free and a great resource for anyone attending the TCI EXPO 2021!


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