MILWAUKEE, WIS. – Dr. Brian Horgan, department of horticultural services at the University of Minnesota, has been named the 2015 Turf & Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) Environmental Communicator of the Year.
Horgan was named at the annual TOCA conference held recently in Milwaukee. The program, sponsored by Project EverGreen is in its 17th year of recognizing individuals in the Green Industry for outstanding communications efforts regarding environmental issues.
“Brian, through his daily work with students and industry stakeholders in the industry, epitomizes this award,” said Den Gardner, executive director of TOCA. “His commitment to environmental communications to consumers across the country and beyond helps spread the word on the importance of preserving turf and ornamentals for generations to come.”
Horgan’s research interests focus on the fate and transport of pesticides and nutrients, water conservation strategies and low-input turfgrass systems. He also was the impetus behind the creation and development of TROE Center (Turfgrass Research, Outreach and Education) research facility on the University of Minnesota – St. Paul campus and a new initiative referred to as “Science of the Green.”
Horgan said he was honored by the award. “I feel blessed to work in such a wonderful industry. I truly have the best job in the world.”
Horgan was nominated for the award by Cindy Code, executive director of Project EverGreen. “Brian has extremely good insight on the benefits of green spaces,” Code said. “Through his work at Minnesota and through various industry speaking opportunities, he shares research with audiences nationwide and communicates the environmental benefits of turf, trees, shrubs, sports turf and so on in an intelligent and meaningful way. He’s a true ambassador for the green industry.”
Previous winners have included: Mark Welterlen, Bill Love, Tim Doppel, Doug Fender, Allen James, Rod Dodson, Jeff Gullickson, Kevin Trotta, Helen Stone, Allied Golf Associations of Colorado, Drs. Larry Stowell/Wendy Gelernter, Christopher Gray, Anthony Williams, Dr. Frank Rossi, Phil Fogarty and Dr. Brandon Horvath.