NALP Members in the News: LandCare, Ruppert Landscape, Davey Tree Expert Company, Schill Grounds Management, Steel Green Manufacturing and BrightView - The Edge from the National Association of Landscape Professionals

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NALP Members in the News: LandCare, Ruppert Landscape, Davey Tree Expert Company, Schill Grounds Management, Steel Green Manufacturing and BrightView

Read more about these NALP members and partners in the news.

LandCare Promotes Four and Hires Eight New Management

LandCare has experienced ambitious growth and, as a result, has promoted several and brought on eight new hires in management and executive roles.

Tyler Shannon, Branden Laprade and Jensen Bogan have all been promoted to branch managers of central San Diego, Atlanta west and Austin, respectively. All three have developed and demonstrated leadership and technical skills. Meanwhile, Alec Ryan was promoted to market vice president (MVP) of Texas south region. He will oversee one of the nation’s most rapidly growing markets.

Central division branches also saw exponential growth in 2022, calling for the addition of four new branch managers. Jeff Dietzel will head the new Atlanta south branch with over 14 years of experience.

Chris Carpenter will lead the Dallas east branch, while Eric Lasko will head up the Tampa branch. Jeff Billinger was hired for the Raleigh branch.

In the Northeast, LandCare hired two new MVPs and two new branch managers. Mike Harvey and Nick Carabetta are the new Northeast MVPs, bringing a combined 45 years of industry experience.

Jarod Eaton has been hired as the new branch manager for the Delaware branch and Nick Hoxter is the new Lorton branch manager.

Ruppert Landscape Promotes and Opens New Branch

Mike Felts

Ruppert Landscape has named Mike Felts as the regional vice president of the company’s landscape construction division.

Felts will oversee the Maryland and North Carolina branches. He has been with the company for 12 years and has held numerous roles. His most recent position was vice president of human relations. “We are excited to have Mike back on the landscape construction side of the business and look forward to capitalizing on his unique experience and insight to help optimize efficiencies in our Maryland, Charlotte, and Raleigh markets,” says Bob Jones, president of the landscape construction division.

Chris Bixler

Ruppert has expanded its landscape management operations to include a new location in Washington, D.C. This branch joins several existing branches in the area, including Baltimore, Frederick, Forestville, Laytonsville, White Marsh, and Silver Spring, Maryland, as well as Alexandria, Dulles and Gainesville, Virginia.

Michael Moody

“Thanks to the hard work and dedication of our team and the loyalty and trust of our customers, we have been able to grow our presence in the DMV, necessitating an additional branch,” says Doug Halsey, region vice president in the company’s landscape management division. “This market density will allow us to continue providing excellent service for our existing customers while supporting new growth in the region. Equally as important, it will allow us to provide more growth opportunities for our employees, which is part of our core values.”

This new location will be led by Chris Bixler, who was most recently the branch manager of the Silver Spring location. Michael Moody will step into the role of branch manager at Silver Spring. Moddy has been with the company since 2015.

Davey Tree Expert Company Promotes Three Vice Presidents

Chris Bast, Paul Milano and Tim Walsh

The Davey Tree Expert Company has promoted Chris Bast to senior vice president of treasury and operations support, Paul Milano to vice president of operations support services and procurement and Tim Walsh to vice president of health and safety. 

Bast joined the company in 2013 as treasurer before being promoted in 2017 to vice president and treasurer.

“Chris is a respected leader at Davey who truly engages with his employees,” says Joe Paul, chief financial officer. “We are excited to see Chris bring his energy, financial acumen and keen sense of strategy to these new responsibilities and bring about the same level of excellence we have seen in the treasury area under his leadership.” 

Milano joined the company in 2015 as a corporate fleet manager before being promoted to director of fleet operations in 2017. In his new role he will oversee key corporate fleet administrative functions and have oversight of purchasing. Walsh also joined the company in 2015. He was a safety manager and was promoted to director of corporate safety in 2018.

Schill Grounds Management Acquires GrassCor

Schill Grounds Management has expanded its service in Cincinnati and Dayton through the acquisition of GrassCor, a landscape management and snow and ice removal company.

Based in Blue Ash, Ohio, GrassCor was owned by Alex Sulfsted. He grow the business over the past 12 years to multiple locations around Cincinnati and Dayton with 100 employees. They serve over 300 clients. Sulfsted will continue to lead GrassCor’s team.

“GrassCor is a natural fit for the Schill family of companies, with a culture of integrity similar core values of being employee-centered and customer-focused,” says Jerry Schill, CEO of Schill Grounds Management. “Partnering with GrassCor allows us to provide better coverage and enhanced services in Cincinnati and Dayton — and throughout the Upper Midwest. We are very excited to welcome the GrassCor team.”

This is Schill’s eighth acquisition in less than three years. It complements the previous acquisitions of Grounds Elite, Fredericks Landscaping and Ward + Thornton Landscapes. Schill is actively seeking additional acquisitions in the Midwest and Great Lakes region, as well as the Toronto area in Canada.

Steel Green Manufacturing Moves to New Facility in Indiana

Steel Green Manufacturing has begun production at their new facility in Lebanon, Indiana. This is ahead of schedule from the expected May 2023 move.

The company now has 30,000 square feet to manufacture their line of zero-turn spreaders/sprayers. The building is more than double the size of the previous facility but is only a minute’s drive from the previous location, making for an easy transition.

“We’ve always been proud to say our machines are made in the USA,” says Brent Mills, co-founder and senior product specialist at Steel Green. “This new facility gives us room to continue building machines right here in Lebanon as we grow into the future.”

BrightView Acquires Island Plant Company

BrightView has acquired Island Plant Company, LLC, a premier resort and condominium landscaping company in Maui, Hawaii.

Island Plant Company was founded in 1986 by Thom and Beverly Foster. The company provides landscape maintenance, installation and design services to the Association of Apartment Owners and resort properties throughout west and south Maui and Upcountry.

“As we continue to execute upon our long-term growth strategy, Hawaii’s commercial landscaping business is rapidly expanding and Island Plant’s expertise perfectly complements and strengthens our operations in this market,” says Andrew Masterman, BrightView president and CEO. “Thom and Beverly’s dedication and passion for landscaping is reflected in the reputation Island Plant has earned for designing, installing, and maintaining beautiful landscapes and we’re pleased to welcome them and their team to the BrightView family.”

Jill Odom

Jill Odom is the senior content manager for NALP.