Awards roundup: Gachina Landscape Management earns two Merit Awards for Excellence

Shelter Creek COA has many roses and rose trees that required hand pruning. Photo: Gachina Landscape ManagementShelter Creek COA has many roses and rose trees that required hand pruning.
Photo: Gachina Landscape Management

Gachina Landscape Management, based in Menlo Park, California, has received two Merit Awards for Excellence in Commercial Landscape Management at the 48th annual Awards Dinner held by the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP).

The Awards of Excellence recognize exceptional landscape maintenance, design/build, lawn care and interiorscape projects.

Gachina’s work at Shelter Creek COA earned it one of the awards as it has maintained the mature 35-acre property that has 17 acres of landscaping and water features. High trellises and shrubs had to be hand pruned as no hedge trimmers are allowed on the site. Meanwhile groundcover ivy had to be consistently edged so it would not overtake pathways. A proactive water management strategy also has helped the landscape look its best.

The other landscape management project Gachina was recognized for was Oak Creek Apartments. This site is home to many of the professionals and staff associated with Stanford University/Hospital and crews ensured that acres of turf remained uniformly mowed and beautiful annual color thrived through the seasons.

Gachina conducted turf conversions and installed the smart WeatherTrak ET based controllers, and has been working to restore swaths of turf to its former green self after it was left to go brown during the California drought.

STMA recognizes 2017 “Field of the Year” winners

The Sports Turf Managers Association (STMA) has selected the winners of the industry’s highest honor, the 2017 “Field of the Year” awards.

The Pleasantview Championship Field in Boulder, Colorado, is managed by John Cogdill.The Pleasantview Championship Field in Boulder, Colorado, is managed by John Cogdill.

“Each year our Awards Committee independently selects the safest and most playable natural grass playing surfaces exemplifying the sports turf manager’s hard work and dedication,” said Kim Heck, CEO of STMA. “With an increase in applicants year over year, we are ecstatic to see the growing number of outstanding sports turf managers continually raise the bar with the fields they prepare and maintain.”

A panel of 13 judges scored entries based the appearance, playability, utilization of innovative solutions, effective use of budget and implementation of a comprehensive agronomic program. Judges were not required to award a field in each category.

Several of the winners have received the honor multiple times in a row, including Will Rogers, Shane Hohlbein, John Cogdill, Steve Barnard and Chris May.

The awards will be presented during the 29th annual STMA Conference & Exhibition in Fort Worth, Texas on Jan. 16-19, 2018.

The full list of 2017 winners is listed below:


  • Baseball – Parkview Field at Ft. Wayne Tincaps (Fort Wayne, Indiana): Keith Winter, Head Groundskeeper
  • Soccer – Moneygram Soccer Park Field 8 at FC Dallas (Frisco, Texas): Troy Crawford, Director of Grounds

College and University

  • Baseball – Cleveland S. Harley Baseball Park at University of South Carolina Upstate (Spartanburg, South Carolina): Travis Dill, Sports Turf Technician
  • Football – Historic Grant Field at Georgia Tech University (Atlanta, Georgia): Chris May, Director of Athletic Grounds
  • Soccer – Osborne Stadium at Liberty University (Lynchburg, Virginia): Brian Hinkley, CSFM, Athletic Field Manager
  • Softball – Patricia Wilson Field at Stetson University (DeLand, Florida): Steve Barnard, Field Maintenance Technician
  • Sporting Grounds – 5/3 Bank Stadium at Kennesaw State (Kennesaw, Georgia): Shane Hohlbein, CSFM, Sports Turf Manager

Schools and Parks

  • Baseball – McLean County PONY Baseball (Bloomington, Illinois): Andy Ommen, Head Groundskeeper
  • Football – Cowboys Field at Jim Warren Park (Franklin, Tennessee): John Wagnon, Athletic Crew Chief
  • Soccer – Longfellow Park at Park District of Oak Park (Oak Park, Illinois): Travis Stephen, Sports Field Manager
  • Softball – Blue Eagle Softball Complex at Clover School District (Clover, South Carolina): Will Rogers, CSFM, Sports Turf Manager
  • Sporting Grounds – Pleasantview Championship Field at City of Boulder (Boulder, Colorado): John Cogdill, Manager

JCB presented “Pillar of the Industry” award

The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) awarded JCB a “Pillar of the Industry” award for the Savannah-based company’s contributions throughout the past year to help the equipment manufacturing industry.

Photo: JCBPhoto: JCB

“As a leading construction and agricultural equipment manufacturer, we’re grateful at JCB for the opportunity to promote policies that support manufacturing jobs and help America’s manufacturers to compete on the global stage,” said Richard Fox-Marrs, president and CEO of JCB North America. “And we’re especially proud to have supported AEM’s ‘I Make America’ campaign, which has struck a chord with our state and federal leaders, and our workforce, and helped remind all Americans that a strong manufacturing base is a national asset to be valued.”

The ‘I Make America’ campaign is a grassroots project that advocates policies that will support manufacturing jobs and America’s equipment manufacturers globally. This year was themed ‘Our Products. Our Jobs’ and included the first-ever I Make America fly-in where member companies visited with congressional offices to make their voices heard.

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