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Largest Class in Years Graduates from D.I.T.S.

Posted: April 1, 2014

(Kent, Ohio) – The Davey Tree Expert Company announced the graduation of nearly 60 Davey employees from the Davey Institute of Tree Sciences. As Davey’s flagship training program, D.I.T.S. has been an annual tradition for more than a century.

The month-long training program includes classroom and field exercises in climbing and safety procedures, tree and plant care, disease and pest diagnosis, management practices and team building.

R.J. Laverne, manager of education and training at Davey, pointed out that the program underscores Davey’s commitment to training. “Not many companies have departments dedicated to education or college degree programs partnered with a university,” said Laverne. “Our goal is to help Davey employees work smarter, be efficient and profitable and provide greater service to clients, all while working safely.”

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This year’s class included sessions on how to spot invasive species such as the Asian Longhorned Beetle and Emerald Ash Borer. Students also learned about how to preserve trees during construction and heard management presentations from their respective service lines as the program drew to a close.

As part of the D.I.T.S. graduation banquet, Laverne announced that Valerie Locker received the Golden Oak Award, which is earned by the student with the highest academic performance.

Attendees were drawn from Davey operations across North America and had to be nominated by their field managers and approved by corporate management to be admitted into the prestigious program. This year’s participants included: Patrick Adolph; Aleksi Aleksiev; Mitchell Bauer; John Bekelesky; Andrew Berg; Matthew Betz; Terry Bohner; Patrick Boyle; Bobbie Budell; Jon Corzine; Carolyn Dares; Michael Dawes; Michael J. DiGiacomo; Nicholas Dios; Joseph Dove; Cody C. Finch; Brian Garnett; Tyson Geldseth; Chris Gill; Chad Gregg; James L. Herrick, Jr.; Jason M. Hipp; Russell S. Holman; Mike Iatzko; Tyler Johnston; Stephen M. Jones; Logan Keck; Robert Kraker; Tracy Layne; Bernd J. Lecjaks, Jr.; Devon Lipa; Valerie Locker; Gordon Matthews; Andy Mays; Ryan McCartney; Jackson McClain; Mark Moreau; Zachary T. Moulton; Brian Parris; Joseph Payne; Miles Peart; Derek Phillips; Alfonzo Robles; Kevin Roskos; Andrew G. Roth; Darrin Salvador; Kraig Shamblin; Alex Singeltary; Ryan Statham; Mitchell Stevenson; Craig Stone; Jon Streich; Seth A. Stygar; Carlos A. Varela; Kyle Vincent; Richard Wiland and Patrick Milo Worden.

The Davey Tree Expert Company, with U.S. and Canadian operations in more than 47 states and five provinces, provides a variety of tree care, grounds maintenance and consulting services for the residential, utility, commercial, and government markets. Founded in 1880, Davey has been employee-owned for 35 years and has more than 7,300 employees who provide Proven Solutions for a Growing World. For more information, visit www.davey.com.

Photo caption: Valerie Locker (middle), consulting arborist with Davey Resource Group, shows her Golden Oak Award with Greg Ina (left), vice president and general manager at The Davey Institute, and Pat Covey (right), chief operating officer at Davey Tree. Locker won the award for achieving the highest academic performance in the 2014 D.I.T.S. class.

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