GRANTS PASS – City of Grants Pass Urban Forester Tony Mecum has been honored by the Oregon Department of Forestry and the nonprofit organization Oregon Community Trees with their coveted Individual of the Year Award.
“The Individual Award from Oregon Community Trees is a great honor, but one that, despite the award’s name, is not based on one person’s efforts. I would not be successful without the collaboration, advocacy, and hard work of my colleagues within Parks and other city divisions, as well as the Urban Tree Advisory Committee and active constituents,” said Mecum.
The award is one of only three honors bestowed by the awarding organizations each year to recognize outstanding contributions of organizations and individuals across the state of Oregon.
“We could see from the volume of material submitted with his nomination that, in just one year, Tony has become a well-respected resource to Grants Pass staff, city council, the Urban Tree Committee and the public,” said Oregon Community Trees Vice President Teresa Gustafson.
Mecum joined the city staff in late 2019, returning to the community where he grew up as a child to put his skills to use as an urban forester.
“It’s been an honor to return to the community that raised me while having a career that allows me to give back. I am happy that Grants Pass has received recognition from the Oregon Department of Forestry and the Oregon Community Trees organization for the work we’ve all been part of to make Grants Pass a thriving town,” he said.
Some of Mecum’s accomplishments noted in his nomination include establishing the city’s first citywide tree inventory, creating a prequalified arborist list for local landowners, increasing the city’s approved tree species list, and establishing an urban forestry page for the city’s website.
“Trees do so much more than make a street, park, or yard beautiful. They perform an astounding number of functions that produce benefits for the entire community, and they perform these functions around the clock. To be part of the management of our city’s great urban forest asset is truly rewarding,” said Mecum.
For additional information, visit: https://www.grantspassoregon.gov/449/Grants-Pass-Urban-Forestry.