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ISA Awards of Distinction

The ISA Awards of Distinction, presented by Bartlett Tree Experts, are the highest honors given by ISA based on nominations submitted by members and industry professionals. Nominations are reviewed by the ISA Awards Committee, and the committee submits a roster of recommended award recipients to the ISA Board of Directors for approval. The ISA Awards of Distinction recipients are announced at the ISA Annual International Conference.

Award Nominations

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2018 ISA Awards of Distinction. Submit your nomination online. Deadline is 16 February 2018. If you have questions, please email

Award Categories

Award of Merit

This is the highest honor bestowed by ISA, which recognizes a career of outstanding, meritorious service in advancing the principles, ideals, and practice of arboriculture. Nominees must be members of ISA. Past Recipients

Alex L. Shigo Award For Excellence in Arboricultural Education

Recognizes the important role that education plays in enhancing the quality and professionalism of the arboriculture industry through sustained excellence in arboricultural education. Nominees must be members of ISA. Past Recipients

Sharon J. Lilly Award of Achievement

In recognition of sustained outstanding efforts or contribution to the advancement of ISA. Nominees must be members of ISA. Past Recipients

Honorary Life Membership

Granted to members of ISA who have contributed materially and substantially to the progress of arboriculture and have given unselfishly in their efforts to support arboriculture. Past Recipients

R.W. Harris Author’s Citation

Granted to authors for sustained excellence in the publication of timely information pertaining to the field of arboriculture. Past Recipients

L.C. Chadwick Award for Arboricultural Research

Recognizes individuals whose research has contributed valuable information to arboriculture. Past Recipients

Millard F. Blair Award for Exceptional Contribution to Practical Arboriculture

In recognition of individuals whose service has made a substantial contribution to practical arboriculture. Past Recipients

Early-Career Scientist Award

Granted to individuals who show exceptional promise, with high potential to become an internationally-recognized scientist. Past Recipients

Honorary Membership

Recognizes individuals who are NOT ISA members, but who have continued interest and outstanding service in promoting arboriculture. Recipients of this award receive a 12-month ISA membership.

2017 Award Recipients

  • Award of Merit: Rex Bastian
  • Alex L. Shigo Award for Excellence in Arboricultural Education: Zhu H. Ning
  • Sharon J. Lilly Award of Achievement: Y. Star Huang
  • Honorary Life Membership: Jon Hickey, Sr.
  • R.W. Harris Author’s Citation: Andrew Koeser
  • L.C. Chadwick Award for Arboricultural Research: Susan Day
  • M. F. Blair Award for Exceptional Contribution to Practical Arboriculture: de Gourét Litchfield
  • Early-Career Scientist Award: Anders Busse Nielsen
  • Honorary Membership: Bamidele Folorunsho Oni

Past Award Recipients

View a complete list of previous award winners


2016 Awards of Distinction Winner Bios


2015 Awards of Distinction Winner Bios


2014 Awards of Distinction Winner Bios

2014 Awards of Distinction Video Bios


2013 Awards of Distinction Winners

2013 Awards of Distinction Video Bios


2012 Awards of Distinction Winners

2012 Award Winner Video Bios

For More Information

To learn more about this awards program, contact ISA at

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Tuesday, January 16, 2018 11:37:04 AM (CST/ISA Headquarters Time)
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