Dave Napier’s Transformation Story

The Tree Trust mission to transform lives and landscapes is realized in every life our programs touch. Tree Trust alumnus Dave Napier has forged a successful career, and his experience as a Tree Trust summer youth worker set him on the path towards that success. This is Dave’s Tree Trust story.  

How did your experience as a Tree Trust youth worker influence you both personally and professionally? 

“Working as a youth in a Tree Trust program taught me how to be responsible, have a good work ethic, [and learn] time management and money management. These important values also affected my behavior in my family life at home with my parents. I started at 15 as a youth worker and made a 40-year career out of my experience. I was hired at Dodge Nature Center as a member of the seasonal grounds crew and worked my way up to become Building and Grounds Director.”  

Tree Trust is grateful for the support of The Dodge Nature Center over the years, and we want to thank you for this partnership.  

“You have a great program. I saw the value firsthand that Tree Trust brings to youth. The approach Tree Trust takes to train the crew leaders is so valuable. I watched crew leaders make youth pull out a post and redo it because it wasn’t up to standards.  

Based on your experience in the Summer Youth Employment Program what advice can you offer to youth exploring careers in the skilled trades & green industry?  

“Take everything you have learned. These skills will be important as you move forward in life.”  

Please consider sharing your Tree Trust story

We know there are many stories like Dave’s from past participants in our programs. We are proud of the accomplishments of all those we have worked with over the years. If you would like to share your Tree Trust story with us, please visit our Tree Trust story submission page!  

Dave Napier currently serves as the mayor of West St. Paul and was our keynote guest speaker at our 2022 Summer Youth Employment Program celebration, where Tree Trust celebrated the accomplishments of 136 youth in this year’s program.