Karl Schimmel, left, LaWN president, presents the 2011 Person of the Year award to Dr. Doug Soldat.

Racing Season Starts Strong for Propane

The 2012 NMRA/NMCA Drag Racing season started out strong for propane as Don Bowles won the first race, running his Roush Propane Mustang in Bradenton, Fla. His 2005 Roush Stage 3 Mustang was converted to run on liquid propane. This car, along with a 2010 Roush Stage 3 driven by teammate Susan Roush-McClenaghan and sponsored by AmeriGas/Metro Lawn, is an offshoot of the kits that Roush Performance uses to convert gasoline-powered Ford pickups and vans to run on clean-burning propane.

LaWN Announces Person of the Year

The Lawns of Wisconsin Network selected Dr. Doug Soldat as its 2011 Person of the Year. He is an assistant professor in the department of soil science at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Soldat holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in soil science from UW Madison, as well as a doctorate in horticulture from Cornell University. Launches New Web Store has launched an online ordering site serving professional turf managers with top-quality products. The cyberstore offers a full range of the gear, tools, clothing and footwear, accessories, cleaning supplies, irrigation, pest control, soil testing and safety equipment used daily by turf managers. A division of Progressive Grower, Inc. of Wareham, Mass., offers a direct purchasing solution on turf management supplies.

Irrigation Foundation Launches Career Link

The Irrigation Foundation launched the Irrigation Career Link, an online job board at The job board allows employers and job seekers to access career resources that provide information on a variety of topics, upload résumés and create job alerts based on user-defined criteria, and post open positions or internship opportunities for a 30 or 60-day time period. Career resources and job seeker tools are available free of charge.

Stens Sends Relief Team to Tornado-Stricken Towns

In response to the series of tornadoes that hit southern Indiana on March 2, Stens sent a relief team to Scottsburg and Henryville, Ind. Stens employees Chris Roos and Ryan Schwartz volunteered to assist Scott’s Hardware, located in Scottsburg, with post-storm cleanup. The team spent a full day in Scottsburg, then a second full day in Henryville, offering chain sharpening service to local volunteers.

JCB of Twin Cities Joins Dealer Network

JCB’s North American dealer network continues to expand with the addition of JCB of Twin Cities. Located north of the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area, the 30,000-square-foot dealership in Ham Lake, Minn., is newly remodeled and equipped with JCB’s full line of equipment.

Pro Products Holding Summer Photo Contest

Pro Products, the makers of Rid O’ Rust Exterior Rust Stain Remover, is holding a summer photo contest. “Show Us Your Rust” is running now through September 2012. All photo submissions will receive a voucher for a free gallon of liquid rust stain remover and one grand-prize winner will be awarded an Apple iPad2! The contest is open to contractors and property owners, and all types of rust photos are welcome. If there is a stain that has already been remedied using Rid O’ Rust, before and after pictures are welcome as well. To enter, visit

U.S. Lawns Adds Four Franchisees

U.S. Lawns announced the addition of four new franchisees to its network of more than 250 landscape management franchises nationwide. Franchisees attend six days of training at the U.S. Lawns home office in Orlando, Fla. The new franchisees are Darrick Stirling, Kansas City, Mo.; Jason Thompson, Waterloo, Iowa; Bruce Maloomian, Dover, Del.; and Rick Collins, Akron, Ohio.

Charles Whitt

Becker Underwood Welcomes New Communications Manager

Charles Whitt has joined Becker Underwood as communications manager for the company’s U.S. and Mexico-based operations. He comes to Becker Underwood from Bunting Magnetics Co., where he was vice president of marketing and communications for the past four years. Whitt holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Missouri and an MBA from the University of Rochester. Offers Free Tools for Schools

FMC Corp. offers free tools for schools on to aid in fire ant control. Find guidance on assessing risk, determining thresholds, creating a plan and sharing information.

John Deere Turf Care Recognized for Environmental Efforts

The North Carolina Department of Environment & Natural Resources recognized John Deere Turf Care in Fuquay-Varina, N.C., as a 2011 Environmental Steward. The state’s Environmental Stewardship Initiative, designed to promote and encourage superior environmental performance by North Carolina’s regulated community, began in 2002. An Environmental Steward is an organization that has demonstrated environmental leadership through its commitment to exemplary environmental performance beyond what is required by regulation.

New Holland Sponsors Career Days, Competition

New Holland Construction was a major sponsor of the Professional Landcare Network’s 36th annual Student Career Days. The annual conference and career fair allows students to compete in events that are directly related to the skills necessary for a career in the green industry. New Holland also sponsored the tractor loader backhoe competition held during the three-day event.

Employees at Schiller Grounds Care’s facility in Johnson Creek, Wis., reached a safety milestone.

Schiller Achieves Safety Milestone

Schiller Grounds Care, Inc. achieved a workplace safety milestone in its Johnson Creek, Wis., facility, reaching 4 million man-hours without a lost time injury. It took the employees just under 12 years to work that many hours. The Liberty Mutual Group awarded Schiller its Silver Safety Excellence Award for safety excellence in the workplace.

Toro Breaks Ground on Distribution Center

The Toro Co. announced that it is partnering with Ryan Companies to build a 450,000-square-foot distribution center near Des Moines, Iowa. Toro will ultimately lease the facility from Ryan once construction is completed later this year. At that time, Toro will transition distribution operations from its current facilities in Lakeville, Minn., and Beatrice, Neb., to the new Des Moines facility, which will employ about 20 people.

Curtis Now ISO 9001:2008 Registered

Curtis Industries LLC announced the company has demonstrated that its quality management system is now compliant with the requirements of the ISO 9001:2008 standard. The company’s system was awarded official registration by TUV USA, member of TUV NORD Group. Curtis began the process over a year ago to implement all the necessary documentation and systematic changes to meet all mandatory criteria to receive certification.

TrynEx International celebrated its 15th anniversary.

TrynEx Celebrates 15 Years

TrynEx International celebrated its 15-year anniversary on March 2, 2012. Established in 1997, TrynEx was formed from a small lawn care and snow removal company. The company began by manufacturing a limited line of spreaders and broom attachments. TrynEx now offers a diverse line of professional-duty products aimed at boosting efficiency and reliability.

Arysta Receives Approval of XONERATE

Arysta LifeScience North America, LLC announced that XONERATE herbicide has received federal approval from the Environmental Protection Agency for use on turfgrasses to provide control of Poa annua. XONERATE contains the active ingredient amicarbazone in a water-dispersible granule formulation. It is absorbed by leaves and roots for systemic control of Poa annua and inhibits photosynthesis in sensitive plants by interfering with normal electron transport.

Agri-Inject Names New CEO, Director

Agri-Inject, Inc. announced that Erik Tribelhorn has returned to the company as chief executive officer. He began working for Agri-Inject in 1992, and left in 1999 to work for Quality Irrigation, where he spent 12 years.

Neal Saxton was named director of global sales. He has been with Agri-Inject for six years and previously managed sales in the western and southeastern U.S. In 2011 he served as interim general manager for the company.