MEMBERS of the Institute of Chartered Foresters have elected Sharon Durdant-Hollamby FICFor as the new president.

Sharon succeeds Alastair Sandels FICFor, who has completed two years in the role. She is the first chartered arboriculturist, and only the second female, to hold the position of president.

Sharon qualified as a professional member of the Institute in 2009, was promoted to fellow in 2014 and has significant experience in the sector. She is managing director of Sharon Hosegood Associates, an arboricultural consultancy providing advice on managing trees on development sites, in the wider landscape and within the community.

She also hosts and produces Tree Lady Talks, a podcast series that covers all things trees, nature, outdoor spaces and well-being through conversations with fascinating people from all walks of life.

READ MORE: Event report: Trees, People and the Built Environment 4

Sharon commented: "It is a privilege and honour to be president of the Institute at a time when the pressures of climate change and biodiversity loss are major global concerns. As arboriculturists and foresters, we can help meet these challenges, and we will make sure that all members are heard, supported and can thrive. I look forward to working with the Institute in progressing our new technical membership class, as recently voted in by members.

"This is also a time of increasing research, innovation, and a greater understanding of how nature makes us feel better. We are working with other professions and allied organisations to push trees up the agenda to make a difference on the ground and to people’s lives. There is much work to do and not enough skilled people to do it, so we will continue to let others know that working in arboriculture and forestry is a great career choice; not just for young people, but for career changers as well.

"This is a pivotal time to work with trees. Right now, our work has never been more important. We can guide the change, we will make the difference. It’s not just trees we need – it’s people working with trees."

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