Success in Fort Worth!

SFMA recently hosted its 29th annual Conference & Exhibition in Fort Worth, Tex. With more than 200 exhibitors and 1,200 attendees from 14 countries. A “Seminar on Wheels Tour” at professional, collegiate and youth sports complexes in Dallas-Fort Worth complemented nearly 50 education sessions, sports turf exhibits and networking with environmental science leaders.

SAFE, the association’s charitable foundation, raised more than $23,000 through an outing at Topgolf, a “Night of Bowling” and silent and live auctions. Proceeds benefit educational programs, scholarships and grants enriching communities through safe, sustainable sports and recreation fields.

This year’s prestigious Founders Awards were given to the following:

Paul Burgess, CSFM, of the Real Madrid and Estadio Santiago Bernabeu received the 2017 Dick Ericson Award.
Paul is known for a strong work ethic and commitment to the sports turf industry, and the results are what his peers call, “world class” playing surfaces. As head groundskeeper for one of the largest sports clubs in the world, Paul has taken his position and used it to promote our industry. He achieved three certifications in 2017. He became a Certified Sports Field Manager and had two sports facilities achieve Environmental Facility Certification. All three are a first for SFMA — the first time that certifications have been achieved by a European Sports Field Manager.

Dan Bergstrom, CSFM, of BBVA Compass Stadium received the 2017 George Toma “Golden Rake” Award.
The George Toma Golden Rake Award is known as the “and then some” award, because this honor goes to an individual who goes above and beyond what is required. Dan was cited by his peers as someone who has always been willing to give time and expertise to the industry. He has given and continues to give numerous presentations — locally, regionally and nationally — and host events at his facility. In a career that is primarily in baseball, Dan has led field rebuilds at inner-city facilities and assisted many sports field managers in their careers at minor league facilities and in the Dominican Republic. His vision for the association exemplifies the George Toma philosophy.

James Brosnan, Ph.D., from the University of Tennessee received the 2017 William H. Daniel Ward.
Speaking to the mentoring capacity of Dr. Brosnan, three Ph.D. students who studied under him are now faculty members at land-grant universities specializing in turfgrass. He has authored many peer-reviewed journal articles, frequently contributes to SportsTurf magazine, and annually speaks at the SFMA conference. As an Associate Professor with an appointment in turfgrass weed science, his research and extension activities span all turfgrass specialties, but a significant portion of his efforts focus on athletic field research. He has completed multiple projects to quantify the effects of weed infestations on playability, and he works proactively to educate athletic field managers on the importance of herbicide rotations. He developed the Mobile Weed Manual, a free application for mobile devices.

SFMA’s highest honor, the Harry C. Gill Award, was awarded to Tim Moore, CSFM, of GCA Services.
Cited as one of the most influential professionals in our business, Tim’s involvement in the profession has been immeasurable: committee service, chapter involvement, serving on the SFMA Board of Directors and much more. Tim has been a champion for the Certification Program, becoming one of the first group of members to receive the CSFM designation. He has written articles that have advanced the professionalism of the industry, was a board member for the Mid-Atlantic chapter as well as the SFMA Board and served on SFMA’s Awards Committee and helped that program to mature to the level it is today.

Since 1989, SFMA hosted its annual convention in major cities across America. The 2019 and 2020 editions will be in Phoenix and West Palm Beach, Fla., respectively.