SAF Presents 2014 Awards
The Society of American Florists 130th Annual Convention in Marco Island, Florida, earlier this month was a busy time for recognizing some key members of the industry.
SAF Alex Laurie Award
John Dole, Ph.D., head of the department of horticultural science at North Carolina State University, is the 2014 recipient of the SAF Alex Laurie Award. This award recognizes Dole as a top teacher and researcher who is a sought-after mentor within the classroom and floral industry.
Dole’s current research focuses on cut flowers, including new cultivar evaluations, production, postharvest and marketing analysis. He teaches both undergraduate and graduate level courses and his publications include six books and more than 60 refereed publications and 250 trade journal articles.
SAF Gold Medal Award
SAF has honored David Clark, Ph.D., a professor in the University of Floridas (UF) department of environmental horticulture, with its Gold Medal Award. The award recognizes the originator or introducer of a widely distributed plant or flower that has become established as an outstanding product of significant horticultural and commercial value.
Since starting his work with coleus 11 years ago, Clark has nearly eliminated early flowering and introduced new colors, color combinations and leaf shapes. In addition, he’s made varieties more tolerant of heat, drought and sun exposure.
Paul Ecke, Jr. Award
David Armellini, president and CEO of Armellini Express Lines Inc. in Palm City, Florida, was named the 2014 SAF Paul Ecke, Jr. Award honoree. The award recognizes devotion to the profession, industry and community.
Armellini used his companys 18-wheeler to deliver supplies to those affected by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and Hurricane Sandy in 2011. He continues to expand the company, making it the largest transporter of fresh cut flowers, while introducing new tracking technologies and innovations.
Tommy Bright Award
SAF presented Joyce Mason-Monheim with the 2014 Tommy Bright Award for lifetime achievement in floral presentation. As a speaker and freelance designer, she has formalized educational programs and certifications for floral designers at the state and national level over the past 15 years.
SAF has recognized three companies that have been in business for 100 years or more with the Century Award. Honorees include : George Didden Greenhouses in Hatfield, Pennsylvania, C.J. Sanderson & Son Florist in Woodbury, N.J., and the Texas State Florists Association.