In June, during the U.S. Open golf championship, the
whole world became familiar with Sid Patterson’s greatest
accomplishment. Remember that frequent camera shot from the 18th green
showing a solid canopy of green stretching eight miles to the downtown
skyscrapers? No person or organization did more to create that canopy
than Sid Patterson and the all-volunteer organization he founded 25
years ago, Up With Trees.
The numbers are mind-boggling – 13,000 trees at 345 sites in
every part of Tulsa, with another seven to eight hundred trees added
each year. Any Up With Trees volunteer will tell you that Sid Patterson
has participated in nearly every one of those plantings.
In 1994, the Tulsa World reported that Sid, a past street
commissioner, was famed for presiding over numerous improvements to
Tulsa’s expressway system and he was influential in starting the city’s
heralded stormwater management program to control flooding. “But,” the
newspaper added, “His accomplishments in concrete are rivaled by Up
With Trees’ beautification benefits.”
As recently noted by a regional urban forester with
the U.S. Forest Service in Atlanta, there are other urban tree-planting
groups around the country, but none is better run than Up With Trees.
Tulsa's Mayor Susan Savage told us, “Sid Patterson’s name means trees
to me. Sid is a dedicated man with a vision, a passion to beautify
Tulsa. Along the way, he's pulled friends, families, businesses, the
entire community into his plan, leaving a wonderful legacy for
generations to come."
Sid has been a member of the Oklahoma Urban and Community
Forestry Council since its founding. KOB honored him three years ago
with our Individual Achievement Award for Beautification &
Landscaping. Sid also has been recognized by the Southern States Urban
Forestry Council and has received the National Conservation Award from
the Society of the DAR.
A month before he and Beverly celebrate their 55th wedding
anniversary in November, Sid will be inducted into the Tulsa Historical
Society Hall of Fame.
| Sid (far right) with a few of his many fans who attended the KOB awards banquet August 3, 2001
He has been described as firmly rooted and unafraid to branch
out. But we’ll “leaf” those puns to others. Tonight we are here to
place him in the sterling company of Joanne Orr and Pen Woods as only
the third person to receive Keep Oklahoma Beautiful’s Lifetime
Achievement Award because SID PATTERSON IS GOOD NEWS FOR OKLAHOMA’S URBAN FORESTS!
Posted on 05/01/2001
by Sonny Wilkinson filed under