Campus Life

UWF celebrates Arbor Day with tree rededication ceremony in memory of Margaret Crosby

The University of West Florida held a tree rededication ceremony in memory of Margaret Crosby on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2022, in celebration of Arbor Day.

In 1968, Crosby, wife of UWF’s first president Dr. Harold Crosby, was a founding member and first president of the UWF Faculty Wives Club, later named the UWF Women’s Club, and now the UWF Women’s Study Collective. 

“At UWF, we are committed to making our 1,600-acre campus a beautiful place for students to learn and a centerpiece for the community to celebrate Florida’s natural beauty,” said UWF President Martha D. Saunders. “Honoring Margaret Crosby as we celebrate Arbor Day seems like a perfect pairing.”

A dogwood tree was first planted in honor of Crosby on Dec. 1, 1993, exactly 29 years prior to the day of the new rededication ceremony. A red maple tree replaced the dogwood, which had completed its life cycle. The tree was planted outside UWF’s psychology building, adjacent to the UWF Camelia Garden.

University leadership, UWF Women’s Study Collective members and representatives from the community were in attendance for the tree planting and plaque dedication ceremony. 

“The replanting of this memorial tree in celebration of Arbor Day signifies UWF’s commitment to honoring those who came before us, and providing opportunities for those who follow,” said Jeff Etheridge, UWF’s interim superintendent of buildings and grounds. 

Since 2019, UWF has been recognized annually by the Arbor Day Foundation program, Tree Campus Higher Education, which honors colleges and universities and their leaders for effective campus forest management and for engaging staff and students in conservation goals.

To obtain the distinction, UWF met the five core standards for an effective campus forest management, including establishment of a tree advisory committee, a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program, an Arbor Day observance and sponsorship of student service learning projects.

To learn more about the program, visit