Penn State Debuts Online Master’s Degree

Penn State now offers a Master of Professional Studies in turfgrass management, the first-ever online master’s degree in this field. Offered by the College of Agricultural Sciences online through Penn State’s World Campus, the 30-credit master’s degree program completes the turfgrass management portfolio that includes two certificates, an associate degree and a bachelor’s degree. For additional information, visit

George Brown

Ruppert Promotes Brown

Ruppert Landscape promoted George Brown to the position of area manager in the landscape management branch in Forestville, Md. Brown brings over 10 years of industry experience to his new position and is a graduate of SUNY Cobleskill. He began his career with Ruppert in 2008 as a field manager.

New England Grows Announces Speaker Lineup

More than 30 ground-breaking educational seminars are planned for New England Grows, scheduled for February 2-4, 2011, at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center in Boston, Mass. The speaker lineup includes Stephen Stimson, Richard Hartlage, Dan Snow, John Stilgoe, Mark Chisholm and Whitney Cranshaw. In addition to a host of horticultural and design topics, important business issues like effective marketing, social media and customer retention will be addressed.

Lawn Dawg Participates in Renewal & Remembrance

Lawn Dawg participated in the Professional Landcare Network’s Renewal & Remembrance at Arlington National Cemetery. Hundreds of landscape and lawn care professionals from across the nation bring their crews to the site to spend the day servicing the landscape.

Converted Organics Announces New Distributor

Converted Organics, Inc. announced that Atlantic Golf & Turf, Turner Falls, Mass., will serve as its new East Coast distribution partner within the golf course market. The company will distribute LC 1-1-1 and 6-0-0 Turf Blend fertilizers in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

Dan Obringer, president of Echo, presents opening remarks before the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

Echo Celebrates Shindaiwa Warehouse Opening

Echo, Inc. cut the ribbon on its new 129,000-square-foot warehouse expansion in Lake Zurich, Ill. The new warehouse was built to accommodate additional space requirements resulting from the company’s recent merger with Shindaiwa, Inc., and to support the future growth of the Shindaiwa brand in North America and Latin America. Joining in the ribbon-cutting ceremony were dealers, employees, vendors, Lake Zurich city officials and other special guests.

Back row, from left, Ken Shave, president Dallas Steiner, Trevor Ryan and Brian Carr. Front row, from left, inside sales and marketing manager Wayne Ressler, Brian Godwin, T.J. Clark and national sales manager Kevin Holland.

Ventrac Sales Force Expands

Ventrac announced the expansion of its sales force with the addition of several new members. With over 31 years of experience in the sales and outdoor power equipment industry, T.J. Clark, Brian Carr and Ken Shave have joined the current Ventrac sales team. They will be responsible for increasing sales and growing the Ventrac dealer networks throughout their designated territories.

From left, Mark Hall, SnowEx director of marketing and sales, and John Fiorini, John M. Fiorini, Joe Nolan and Estelle Blush, all with Meadowbrook Parking Area Contractors.

SnowEx Gives Away Spreaders at SIMA Symposium

SnowEx gave away two free SR-210 wireless spreaders at SIMA’s 2010 Snow & Ice Symposium. The winners, drawn at random from a group of show attendees who registered at SnowEx’s booth, were John Fiorini of Fioland Contracting, West Babylon, N.Y., and Scott Carson of Piscataqua Landscaping Co., Inc., Eliot, Maine.

JCB Adds Dealer, Opens Factory

JCB’s North American dealer network has expanded with the addition of Darr Equipment Co.. Darr has eight branch locations in northeast Texas and Oklahoma.

JCB continued its investment in global excavator production capability with the opening of its newest factory in Brazil. The construction of the factory took seven months and includes a new training area to enhance the service backup provided to excavator customers in the region.

Deere Offers New Standard Warranty

John Deere increased standard warranty coverage on new construction equipment in the U.S. and Canada. The free, basic warranty has changed from six to 12 months. Deere’s basic, no-deductible 12-month warranty “travels” with the machine if the equipment is sold to another party.

Brian Kile

Fecon Announces Territory Manager

Fecon announced Brian Kile as northeast and mid-Atlantic regional manager. He comes to Fecon with a strong background in heavy equipment sales.

Groundskeeper & IFMA Release Guide

The Groundskeeper and the IFMA Foundation announced the release of “Sustainable Landscaping,” a practical guide on how to introduce and advance sustainable practices in landscaping. The guide, sixth in the foundation’s sustainability guide series, is available as a free download at or It provides an overview of several key areas, including design, construction, maintenance, guidance on making the business case for sustainability and case studies.

Ditch Witch Signs on as Challenge Sponsor

Ditch Witch (the Charles Machine Works) has signed on as a major sponsor of the 2011 Association of Equipment Manufacturers Construction Challenge presented by Volvo Construction Equipment. Ditch Witch will sponsor one of the two finals challenges of the student competition taking place at CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2011.