Elizabeth Skrzat & George Gonzalez

Rip Out Your Lawn & Plant Trees: Navigating the Politics of Tree Planting in a Drought, 

Wednesday May 4th, 1:45pm, Urban Forestry/Risk Breakout (Main Street USA)

We all know it’s hard to get politicians and the public to see the magic in our urban forest, at that becomes especially difficult during a drought. How do we answer the question “Why trees NOW?” Learn from LA’s tree program as it adapted to a drier reality while addressing anxiety among the public (and public officials) with effective messaging, as well as a new tree list and new standards.

Elizabeth SkrzatElizabeth Skrzat  is the Program Director for City Plants, the City of LA’s tree planting arm. She has a Masters in Public Administration from USC. Liz started at Million Trees LA in 2012 working on communications and drove its transition to City Plants under the new mayoral administration. She was named Program Director in the spring of 2015.

George Gonzalez  George Gonzalezwas the Chief Forester for the City of Los Angeles from 1998 to 2015, where he oversaw the maintenance of 700,000 street trees. He was a tireless supporter of tree planting and the Million Trees LA, then City Plants project during the latter part of his tenure. He started at the City in 1985 and has been employed in the tree care profession for over 37 years.