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Episode Summary

In this episode, we sit down with Tana Byrd, Star Quintero, Nicole “Carni” Benjamin-Harden , Maria Tranguch, and Betsy Park to talk about climbing competitions and the connections that they have made by participating in them.

About our Guests

Tana Byrd is a Tree climber, hugger, planter, and admirer of all trees.

Star Quintero began climbing in college and worked in a variety of places that eventually led her to Texas.  After the birth of her son a couple of years ago, she decided to take a leap and start her own tree care company. Star is a practicing arborist and owner of Morning Light Arbor Care.  She has been working as an arborist and climber for over ten years.

Maria Tranguch is an International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Certified Arborist,  a Tree Risk Assessment Qualified Arborist, and an ASCA Registered Consulting Arborist with over 14 years of experience in the environmental field.  Maria has been practicing arboriculture in the field for seven years.  Today she is the Founder and Principal Consultant of Legacy Land Consulting, a tree and land consulting practice and an assistant instructor with the Women’s Tree Climbing Workshop.   Maria is interested in forging new pathways in how we care for land and trees and supporting the changing demographics of the tree care industry.

Betsy Parks has worked in Arboriculture for eight years. She is an ISA Certified Arborist and has earned her TRAQ qualification. Betsy and her husband have a small business in Eastlake, Ohio, where she works as the General Foreman and Climber.

Nicole Benjamin-Harden started working in the tree care industry in August of 2015 with Heartwood Tree Service in Charlotte, NC. In 2018 she and her husband started 2 Dog Crew, LLC a small tree company and subcontractor service to venture west to California to work on beetle kill, fire mitigation, and line clearance work in the High Sierra’s near Shaver Lake, CA. Currently, they’ve done 3 “Cali tours”, where Nicole has been a production climber, as well as a safety officer & auditor, and trained coworkers on SRT/SRS, crane work, and advanced rigging. As a contractor she primarily works with companies in the Charlotte, NC area; she also travels for tree work on zipline courses along the Appalachians and occasionally plans out-of-state work vacations with her husband and almost 2-year-old daughter.

Additional Episodes

Check out our conversation with Matthew Meckley in “Having an Escape Plan“!

Check out our conversation with Megan Kacenski in “Overcoming Expectations“!

Our Sponsors for this episode are:

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