A Passion for Trees and Education
Even at an early age, Monika Buczko enjoyed being outdoors.
“I have always had a passion for nature and our environment,” she said. “Even as a young teenager I enjoyed being outside and climbing trees. I have always wondered and tried to understand nature and how trees and plants work.”
However, nature wasn’t her only passion, Buczko also has a passion for teaching, which eventually led to her earning a degree in special education.
Eventually, she returned to her love of trees and started a tree care company with her husband, Robert, called ProClimb Tree Care based in Pennsylvania.
“Combining our two passions and need to understand trees, providing proper health care and management and educating people, led us to establishing our own business in 2007,” she said. “I started helping in every aspect of the business and studying every chance I had to become an arborist.”
In many ways, Buczko found a way to combine her two passions, nature and education, through her work at her tree care company. Buczko, said one of the things she enjoys most about her career are the opportunities she gets to educate the public about trees and how to properly care for them.
“Every single time I have a chance to explain to our customers how trees work, the benefits of trees and change their minds not to remove trees is extremely satisfying,” she said. “I take my time to explain why topping and flush cuts hurt and mutilate trees. Every time we donate tree work to the community and when I volunteer and share my knowledge at elementary and middle school is important to me.”
Over the course of her career, Buczko became an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist®, earned the Tree Risk Assessment Qualification, became a TCIA Certified Tree Care Specialist, a TCIA Tree Care Safety Specialist, EHAP Certified and TCIA PHCT Certified.
“Education should never stop,” she said. “Every day there is something new to learn about trees.”
However, her success has not been without its challenges. Buczko said she’s had to deal with many customers underestimating her abilities.
“Being confident in my knowledge and patience,” she said. “We have had numerous customers, even nowadays, asking for ‘the guy’ to come over and assess and evaluate their trees or give an estimate. Oftentimes people would even hang up, but those who stay on the phone, hear me out and realize that I actually know a lot about trees.”
Although the industry remains male dominated, Buczko doesn’t let that hold her back from achieving her goals.
“Females are capable of doing any type of job, achieving and accomplishing just as much as men,” she said. “It’s important to spread awareness and let society know that.”
As the arboriculture industry continues to grow, Buczko believes “awareness and education” will help create more diversity within the industry.
“I did a presentation at an elementary school and at the end one girl approached me and said, ‘I really love that you didn’t let anything stop you, I want to be like you,’ and she was completely correct,” she said. “Just because an industry is perceived as male doesn’t mean women can’t try and achieve.”
Check out the other Women in Arboriculture profiles.