2008 Tree Steward Award: Student Category

Unlike most six year old boys who anxiously wait to open the pile of toys at their birthday party, Jensen Daly had another idea of how his friends could help him celebrate. They could help get a new street tree planted in the city. According to Jensen’s dad, John, they Googled ‘plant a tree in Burlington’ and the non-profit organization Branch Out Burlington! (BOB!) site came up. They called BOB! and with the help of the City, they were able to get a new maple tree planted in the greenbelt in front of their house. To help fund the planting, Jensen’s friends were asked to contribute up to $5 towards the tree in lieu of gifts.

John remembers when he was 11 or 12 and how he too sponsored a street tree in his hometown of Steamboat Springs, CO. To this day, it has a small plaque hanging around it. He visits his now amazing street tree that has always been “John Daly’s Tree.” He says "someday, when Jensen’s my age, he can go back and say ‘there’s my tree,' just as I still do after 25 years."

Once the tree was in the ground, all Jensen's friends received a picture of it and note thanking them for supporting his tree. The Daly family will continue to watch Jensen’s tree grow and take a picture each year on his birthday. Now, that's a gift that will keep on giving.


Intervale Road, Burlington, VT