The Chair's Award

The Chair's Award is presented by the current chairperson of the Board to recognize outstanding contributions to the Association.

Nominations for the Chair’s Award are made by the President and the Board of Directors of the TCIA. The recipient is honored at TCIA’s annual Winter Management Conference.

Current winner

Chair’s Award goes to Bill Weber

The following is the text of Peter Sortwell’s presentation of the Chair’s Award at Winter Management Conference in Maui, Hawaii, in February.

Each year, the TCIA Chair has the privilege of recognizing a member of our industry who is providing exemplary service to the tree care industry with the Chair’s Award.

The criteria for this award is quite vague: Chair’s Award – recognizes people, usually from within our active member companies, who give considerable time and energy to our industry. Selected annually by the Chair.

Who in this room doesn’t do that?

Giving it considerable thought, I began thinking about entrepreneurs. Many of us in this room are entrepreneurs. As entrepreneurs, we know and understand the risks of starting a business from scratch.

It is extremely stressful, there is a fair amount of fear and there are many sleep-less nights. It takes strength, determination, self-reliance and focus. You are leader keeping all the plates spinning be-cause there is nobody else to spin them for you.

I began thinking of all the entrepreneurs in this room and one person stuck out in my mind. This person really pushed the envelope. He went from being an arborist to being one of our vendors. He went into a business that was totally new to him; a business that is very difficult to succeed in; a business that he knew very little about and one that has very many moving parts.

I remember his first booth at TCI EXPO. I took one look at his 10-by-10 booth and thought, “that poor S.O.B. is not going to make it.”

But being a persistent entrepreneur with a “failure-is-not-an-option” attitude, he has clearly made it. His strong market-ing savvy, commitment to excellence and outstanding customer service has created a successful business that we all can, and do, appreciate.

His business has contributed to our industry greatly. He has helped our industry in marketing, image, safety and overall professionalism.

Please welcome up to the stage the man who 20 years ago begged us to buy his pants so he could move out of his parents’ basement, Bill Weber, team captain of Arborwear


Past winners

  • 2016 Walter Money
  • 2015 Peter Becker
  • 2014 Chris Frank
  • 2013 Howard Eckel
  • 2012 Mark Garvin
  • 2011 Terrill Collier
  • 2010 Tony Gann
  • 2009 Dr. Michael Raupp
  • 2008 Bob Rouse
  • 2007 Dave Zerfoss
  • 2006 Penny Judd
  • 2005 Cynthia Mills
  • 2004 Jerry Morey
  • 2003 Tom Tolkacz
  • 2002 NAA Staff
  • 2001 Robert A. Bartlett, Jr.
  • 2000 Pat Felix and Peter Gerstenberger
  • 1998 50-Year Member Companies: Alpine the Care of Trees, Inc.; Forest City Tree Protection Co., Inc.; Gustin Gardens Tree Service, Inc.; H. A. Morrison, Arborist; Ira Wickes / Arborists; K. P. Soergel & Associates, Inc.; Neville Landscape & Tree Service; Swingle Tree Company; Walgren Tree Experts, Inc.
  • 1997 Peter Sortwell
  • 1996 NAA Board
  • 1995 Rusty Girouard
  • 1994 NAA Staff