Phil Pellitteri, Ray Guries and Gene Smalley honored by Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council

Three CALS scientists were recently recognized for their contributions to urban forestry by the Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council. Ray Guries, emeritus professor of forest and wildlife ecology, and the late Eugene B. Smalley, UW-Madison emeritus professor of plant pathology, were awarded the 2016 Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council Lifetime Achievement Award. The organization’s 2016 Distinguished Service Award went to Phil Pellitteri, emeritus distinguished faculty associate of entomology.

The Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council was established in 1991 to advise the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the State Forester on the best ways to preserve, protect, expand and improve Wisconsin urban and community forest resources.

The award ceremony took place on April 5, 2016 in Russell Laboratories. The awards were presented by adjunct professor of forest and wildlife ecology Bruce Allison, a founding Council member and past chairman.

The Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council shared this information about the awardees:

Distinguished Service Award 
Phil Pellitteri, UW-Madison Distinguished Faculty Associate Emeritus

Phil Pelletteri (left) with his award in hand.

Phil Pellitteri is recognized for his extensive career contributions to the field of urban forest health through his work as the UW-Extension entomologist and head of the UW-Madison Insect Diagnostic Lab for 35 years. He is an icon in the insect world, has mentored and inspired thousands of students and professionals and provided advice to countless citizens throughout Wisconsin. Throughout his career, Phil has enthusiastically shared his extensive knowledge of insect problems threatening Wisconsin’s urban forests by contributing to numerous publications, speaking at conferences, participating in workshops, working with the news media, and educating students, professionals and the general public.

Lifetime Achievement Award
Raymond P. Guries, UW-Madison Emeritus Professor of Forest and Wildlife Ecology, and
Eugene B. Smalley (deceased), UW-Madison Emeritus Professor of Plant Pathology and Forestry

Ray Guries at the award ceremony alongside Joan Smalley, Gene Smalley’s widow, who accepted the award on his behalf.

Raymond P. Guries and Eugene B. Smalley are recognized for their more than 30 year commitment to develop elm cultivars that are resistant to Dutch elm disease. Through their efforts, several cultivars were developed and elements of their research and testing program have been successfully integrated into current protocols that accelerate the selection of plant material. Ray and Eugene also strongly believed that their most important “product” was the training of graduate students and the discovery of basic facts about elm biology. Unlike other scientists whose research results in ideas to be disseminated in journals, they also produced a tangible product: the disease-resistant, ornamentally attractive elm. With their vision of beautiful trees gracing urban boulevards they inspired many others to continue research and development for urban tree species with the hope and expectation of discovering truly superior trees for our communities.