FNGLA Executive leaders engage with U.S. Rep. Kat Cammack, center, during a 2024 association visit to Washington D.C. to advocate for Florida horticulture.

President's Letter: A Year of Outstanding FNGLA Accomplishments

June 6, 2024

The mission of the Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association is to promote and protect the future of Florida's nursery and landscape industry. As president of the organization this year, I have had a front-row seat, and played an active part in everything FNGLA has done and accomplished. As a member, you should feel satisfied that much promotion was accomplished. Although we can't be everywhere, rest assured that our members, leaders and advocacy team have "shown up" to keep pressure on and be seen by officials and lawmakers throughout the state.

This year once again saw the production of two highly successful trade shows as FNGLA staff worked together with other industry leaders. The Landscape Show and the Tropical Plant International Expo were both wildly successful and brought together a record number of exhibitors and attendees. Members from all FNGLA Divisions showcased their wares and talents. FNGLA memberships continued to increase this year. And educational opportunities were expansive as seminars, FNGLA Certifications and programs such as The Knowledge College continue to remain strong.

After years of continued pressure and meetings, FNGLA 2024-25 President-Elect Phillip Hisey received approval from Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) leadership for a new Irrigation Design Standard.

FNGLA’s Miami-Dade Chapter was part of a collective group that worked successfully to keep harmful government regulations in Miami-Dade from becoming law. Association leadership also provided aid to members dealing with labor issues by teaming up with employment and immigration law firm Ogletree Deakins and másLabor, provider of comprehensive H-2A and H-2B services. Through the efforts of FNGLA CEO Tal Coley and staff, communications, public relations and the dissemination of news and information to our members and the public has improved through the use of media outlets and op-eds.

Our Association advocacy efforts in Tallahassee and Washington D.C. remain solid as Jim Spratt, ever vigilant, remains a strong ally for our members as a well-respected and valued voice at the state Capitol. FNGLA’s Executive Board went to Washington D.C. to meet with lawmakers to discuss industry needs at local levels.

My year as president has nearly ended and it seems that the time has just sailed by. The adage, "time flies when you're having fun" certainly applies to me. This has been a great year as I have spent the last 11 months meeting and spending time with some of the greatest people in the green industry - our members. Through countless meetings and hours on the phone, I have had the opportunity to see more of the inner workings of members' businesses. I can see continued growth and success. I am confident that, with the leaders and ideals currently in place, FNGLA will continue to be an advocate and guiding force for us all.

I will truly miss all the opportunities that have been afforded to me as president. The level of respect which has been shown to me wherever I have traveled this year is both humbling and heartwarming. But I know it is a direct reflection of the quality of our members throughout the state, and the respect they have for FNGLA. As I have said before, it has been one of the greatest honors and experiences of my life.

I would like to send a special thank you to both Tal Coley and Linda Adams for their time and counsel, and to my fellow Executive Board members Eric Smith, Phillip Hisey, and Marcella Lucio-Chinchilla for their wisdom and support. Last, but not least, the deepest gratitude and thanks go to my wife, Kathryn, for all of her encouragement and support, and for unselfishly giving me the opportunity to serve FNGLA at this level. I hope to see you all in Naples in a couple of weeks at FNGLA Annual Convention! That reminds me: thanks to my fellow FNGLA Royal Palm Chapter members and Ed Bravo who have been hard at work planning this event.

Phil Buck sig

Phil Buck
Crawford Landscaping (Yellowstone Landscape)
FNGLA 2023-24 President

Not an FNGLA Member?