September 15, 2013
Alan White takes a front row seat as a participant and observer
“The primary reason for joining LO was to associate our new business at the time with a group of like-minded professionals where I could learn and be part of something bigger,” recalls White.
The owner of Turf Systems in Burlington, says, “I remember my first meeting being with Tony (DiGiovanni), who suggested early in the pesticide debate that I attend one of the Lawn Care Sector Group meetings to learn what was going on and share my ideas with my peers.”
Since those days, White has been involved with almost every aspect of the association from branding, to trade shows, to government relations, training, sector groups, Chapters, board of directors and most recently representing LO on the CNLA board of directors.
He says that he doesn’t have just one favourite, but many memories of his time spent volunteering in the association. “There are so many people I have met along the way,” says White, “while representing the lawn care sector not only here at home, but nationally and internationally. I really enjoy having the opportunity to demonstrate to the public the incredible contributions that turfgrass plays in our day-to-day life right beneath our feet.”
For White the number one benefit that he receives from volunteering is the opportunity to learn from others. “By volunteering, you have an opportunity to have a front row seat with some of the best minds in the industry,” says White. “These are people who genuinely not only care about the success of their own businesses but also that of the collective group.”
White advises those interested in volunteering with Landscape Ontario to remain focused on the fact that we are businesses representing business success through professionalism, mentoring and a collective effort to make this one of the healthiest industries in Ontario.
The hard work and leadership that Alan White has provided over the years was verified when he received the IPM Leadership Award during Congress 2013. The award recognizes leadership and contribution toward the healthy growth of the industry. The recipient is decided by a vote among peers.
Having represented Landscape Ontario, a lot of White’s volunteer time will now be directed toward the CNLA’s Board of directors. Yet, it’s not a big leap for him. He has represented Canada during the development of an international foundation Project EverGreen to protect and enhance urban green spaces in the U.S. and in Canada. The most recent project was the St. James Park in partnership with Landscape Ontario and the Sod Growers of Ontario.
Over the years that are too many committees to name them all, but even still, White maintains his enthusiasm for volunteering. “It is this work that has allowed me the ability to participate at the early stages of change and/or innovation.”