New arborist competition goes off - 28th Oct 2013

Mat Miller acting as quiz master at the NAOTY

New Arborist of the Year competition could go off shore


October 24th saw the start of the 2013 New Zealand Arboricultural Association (NZAA) annual conference and the finals of the inaugural New Arborist of the Year competition.

The competition, a brainchild Otago Polytechnic’s Mat Miller saw arborists new to the industry competing in a range of practical skills and theoretical challenges.

Preliminary events were held in conjunction with each of the four NZ Regional Tree Climbing competitions. From the thirty-five entrants the four finalists were: Callum Hay from Auckland, Stephen Griffith from the Waikato, Jamie Hartley from Wellington and Sam James from Christchurch.

The final competition was held over two days and saw the contestants demonstrating their skills and knowledge in plant identification, aerial rescue, knot tying, work-site set up and a quick-fire general knowledge quiz. Apart form the watchful eyes of the NZAA conference attendees, the President of the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Terry Flanagan and the ISA’s Director of Educational Goods and Services, Sharon Lilly also watched on.

Both Terry and Sharon were very impressed, with Sharon commenting that she is considering taking the competition to an international audience, through the ISA. ‘The competition encompasses the many aspects of arboriculture while encouraging excellence and the involvement of those new to the industry’.

Stephen Griffith took out the prize of New Zealand’s Young Arborist of the Year competition.



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