William Spencer Rosenfeld

February 6, 1952 ~ April 1, 2018 (age 66)

William Spencer Rosenfeld, born February 2, 1952, of Lake Burton, Georgia, died April 1, 2018.  He died peacefully and pain free, surrounded by his family, at his home on the lake that he loved.

Spencer was born in Chicago, Illinois, and grew up in Paoli, PA. He received a BS in Biology from  Albright College and later earned a Masters Degree in Forestry, Tree Pathology, and Entomology from Duke University. He moved to Atlanta in 1981 and founded Arborguard Inc., where he was President and CEO before selling to the Davey Tree Company in 2017.

Spencer was a member and formerly sat on the Board of Directors of the Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA). Arborguard was the first company in Georgia to receive TCIA accreditation. He also served on the boards of the Metro Atlanta Landscape and Turf Association (now the Georgia Urban Ag Council), the International Society of Arborculture, the American Forestry Association, Historic Oakland Cemetery, and the Ben Franklin School. He was a member of the prestigious American Society of Consulting Arborists.

Throughout his long and prolific career, Spencer had a hand in many of the projects that have shaped Atlanta in the 30+ years of his service. He was involved in the tree preservation planning for the Beltline and the Canopy Walk and other projects at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens. He was instrumental in forming the Piedmont Park Conservancy, worked closely with Trees Atlanta, and was the recipient of the Kim Coder Education Award, the highest award given by the Georgia Arborists Association. He helped preserve trees during the building of the campus of the UPS headquarters, the Concourse (“King and Queen”) office Park, and the Galleria shopping complex.  

Spencer loved trees, and his pro bono work around the city is evident everywhere he began “tree watch” projects in Atlanta neighborhoods. He would organize neighbors to meet on Saturday mornings and plant seedlings along sidewalks to ensure the future of shady, beautiful streets in town. He would convince mayors, homeowner association leaders, and city planners that trees mattered, added value, and protected the air we breathe. And he was convincing.

His many accolades aside, Spencer was a generous, giving person professionally and personally. He cared about the people who worked for him, and loved the city that he helped to keep green and lush. For years to come, Atlanta will bear the fruits of his dedication and hard work in preserving the beautiful green canopy that sets Atlanta apart.

Spencer is survived by his wife, Genny; children Michael and Matthew (Rosenfeld), Jamie, Jesse, and Drew (Schwartz); and brother Richard Craig Rosenfeld.

A memorial service will be held Wednesday April 18, 2018, at 11:00 am in Lions Square at Oakland Cemetery, followed by a reception at the Bell Tower.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to Trees Atlanta or Historic Oakland Cemetery.


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