By: Rachel Comte, Principal, Arborist, Urban Planner at Urban Canopy Works

Original version published on LinkedIn on June 22, 2021

Over the years, it has seemed that every project we work on there are more and more women running urban forestry efforts across the country. This has been very energizing for me as I watch the balance of labor in a traditionally male-dominated industry start to turn to more balanced representation. To do my part and advance other women in the industry, share ideas, I am excited to participate in the Women’s Forest Congress.

Did you know there is less than 20% representation by women in the forestry sector, and this discrepancy is even more significant for women of color? The Women’s Forestry Congress was formed from the belief that this lack of female perspective is leaving a void, limiting professional participation by more women, and limiting opportunities to think about forests in new ways. There was a need for a forum developed by women, for women.

The Women’s Forest Congress envisions a world where there is equity and empowerment in our forest community.

  • All women are empowered and provided a sense of belonging
  • The influence and impact of all women are manifest in our relationship with forests
  • There is equity for all women in leadership positions, workforce, and stakeholders of the forest community.

I have attended (virtually) a few events already and can tell you what a great group of talented women this has brought together. If you are a woman working and/or passionate about trees in your communities, or simply want to make an impact on the future of forests, I invite you to participate in this forum also. I believe you will truly benefit from the networking, support and encouragement provided – join us. For more information, go to and get involved!