Staff & District Foresters


Danielle Fitzko

Program Manager

1 National Life Drive, Davis 2Montpelier, VT  05620-3801


Contact Danielle if you have questions about:

  • Program Administration
  • Canopy Grants
  • Partnerships
  • Green Infrastructure
  • Recognition Programs

Danielle fondly remembers 2003 when she moved to Vermont to take on the role of coordinating the state's UCF program. Living in Maryland beforehand, she and her husband Mark made a pact on New Year’s eve to move to VT within the year to live the green mountain dream. What she didn't know was that not only would their dream come true, but she would actually land her dream job too. Danielle received her B.S. from Pennsylvania State University and her M.S. from the University of Maryland focusing on urban forestry. Her passion for urban forestry started in Maryland where she worked as a Horticulture Educator for the Extension Service coordinating a multi-county Master Gardner Program. There she spent her days helping Marylanders solve a range of plant problems from turf and houseplants to vegetables and trees. At night, she spent her time advocating for smart growth principles in her own community. One day an 'ah ha' moment happened when she realized she could combine her passion for trees and smart growth with urban and community forestry. She now spends her days developing and supporting program to help Vermont communities realize the value of trees in the heart of our communities.

Kate Forrer

Community Forestry Specialist

University of Vermont Extension 327 US Route 302, Suite 1, Barre, VermontBerlin, VT  05641


Contact Kate if you have questions about:

  • Town forests
  • Our Vermont Woods
  • New Programing Opportunities

Kate started planting trees from a young age. She can still remember being given a small pine seedling in elementary school. Unfortunately, she planted it under a full canopy of towering oaks and though the tree was short lived, her passion for trees and forests only grew. Kate received a BA in Environmental Studies from Bates College in Maine and a MS from University of Vermont in Forestry. In 2006, she joined the Urban & Community Forestry Program. Since joining UVM Extension as an Urban and Community Forestry Outreach Specialist, Kate has taken on various roles from providing technical assistance to communities and volunteer groups in planning and caring for the forest in which we live to coordinating the SOUL Tree Stewards program to working with partners to develop The program has allowed her to put her passion for Vermont’s trees and forests together with her love of working with people. Always up for a challenge, Kate’s newest project involves creating Vermont's first online forestry learning center- a place for landowners, municipalities, professionals, and educators to learn, connect, and become engaged. The project seeks to foster more collaboration.

Elise Schadler

Technical Assistance Coordinator

University of Vermont Extension, 140 Kennedy Drive, Suite 201South Burlington, VT  05403


Contact Elise if you have questions about:

  • Public tree inventory and Management Plans
  • Public policies and ordinances regarding trees
  • Tree care, selection, planting, and protection
  • Vermont Tree Warden Statutes and responsibilities
  • Tree City/Tree Campus/Tree Line USA

Elise is our Technical Assistance Coordinator and has been with VT UCF since 2012. Raised in a small Ohio neighborhood of tree forts, Elise received her B.A. from Indiana University before joining the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps for a pivotal year of introduction to the country's varying natural landscapes as well as social, economic, and environmental issues. She spent the next three years directing a community-based tree planting program in Camden, NJ with the NJ Tree Foundation and eventually ventured north to pursue her M.S. from the Rubenstein School of Environment & Natural Resources at the University of Vermont. She quickly fell for the land, people, and flavor of Vermont and is happy to be able to continue her development as a professional urban forester in this magical state. She is an ISA Certified Arborist, Tree Risk Assessment Qualified, and a graduate of the Municipal Forestry Institute. When not working Elise fills her time with seasonal outdoorsyness, coordination of large backyard dinners and community storytelling events, dance, music, and spending as much time as possible with the good friends, good family, and good pets that fill her life.

Gwen Kozlowski

Outreach & Education Coordinator

140 Kennedy Drive, Suite 201South Burlington, VT  05403

802-651-8343, ext 506

Contact Gwen if you have questions about:

  • Forest Pest First Detector Program
  • SOUL Tree Stewards Volunteer Program
  • Teens Reaching Youth (TRY)- Forest and Trees Program
  • Energy Savings Trees Program
  • Vermont Arbor Day Conference

Gwen has returned to Vermont to join the VT UCF team as the Volunteer Coordinator. She completed her undergraduate degree in Natural Resources at UVM. Since then, Gwen has worked throughout New England in the field as a researcher and in communities as an educator. She is passionate about helping connect people to the important natural resources all around us, whether it's an urban park or rural landscape. She was most recently the Stewardship & Education Manager at the Lowell Parks & Conservation Trust, an urban land trust located in Massachusetts.

Meredith Whitney

Forest Pest Outreach Coordinator

140 Kennedy Drive Suite 102South Burlington, VT  05403

802-651-8343 Ext. 507

Contact Meredith if you have questions about:

  • Invasive forest pests
  • Education & outreach events on invasive forest pests
  • Community planning and preparedness
  • Private campground outreach support
  • and our bi-monthly newsletter

Meredith was born and raised in Central Vermont and considers herself lucky to love the place in which she grew up. Meredith graduated from the University of Vermont with a B.S. in Forestry and a passion for outreach and education. Since graduating, she has enjoyed working in the field of conservation and outdoor recreation in Vermont and Montana. When she isn’t in her role as Forest Pest Outreach Coordinator, she is out finding ways to adventure, doing yoga, relaxing at home, or spending time with friends and family.

Bonnie Woodford

Education & Technical Assistant

1 National Life DriveMontpelier, VT  05672

Contact Bonnie if you have questions about:

  • Big Trees 
  • Greening Schools on Arbor Day 

Bonnie was raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico where she found her love of the earth as an avid skier and open water swimmer. She moved to Vermont during high school and from there went on to Paul Smith’s College to receive her B.S. in Environmental Science. Since then she has been working in the Mad River Valley, cultivating an appreciation for Vermont's rural landscapes and people. Wanting to do more to preserve and improve the quality of life for Vermonters she began her service term with ECO AmeriCorps this past fall. Over the next year, Bonnie’s service will focus on enhancing VT’s Big Tree Program and supporting a variety of education, outreach, and technical assistance programs to support Vermont communities.

District Urban and Community Foresters

Our district foresters provide technical assistance across the state, review and inspect grant-funded projects, and support Program staff in outreach and education.

Addison, Chittenden, Franklin, and Grande Isle Counties

Matt Leonard
Department of Forests, Parks, & Recreation
111 West Street
Essex Junction, VT 05452

Rutland and Bennington Counties

John Lones
Department of Forests, Parks, & Recreation
271 North Main Street, Suite 215
Rutland, VT 05701

Caledonia, Orleans, and Essex Counties

Neil Monteith
Department of Forests, Parks, & Recreation
1229 Portland Street, Suite 201
St. Johnsbury, VT 05819

Lamoille, Washington, and Orange Counties

Dave Wilcox
Department of Forests, Parks, & Recreation
324 N. Main Street
Barre, VT 05641

Windsor and Windham Counties

Rick White
Department of Forests, Parks, & Recreation
100 Mineral Street, Suite 304
Springfield, VT 05156

Program Guiding Principles and Tenets of Collaboration