An in-house publication
January 2017

From the President's Desk

Happy New Year! I want to thank everyone for making 2016 such a success for the entire synthetic turf industry and Synthetic Turf Council (STC). As we begin 2017, STC looks to solidify its place as the preeminent organization representing the synthetic turf industry. This could not have happened without having dedicated board members, committees and members that have put the industry's best interests front and center. There are many opportunities to volunteer based on your interests. If you are thinking about serving in a volunteer capacity, please contact me. The effectiveness of the STC starts with its volunteer leadership.

Every association can deliver better results, and the improvements we are making in governance, management and strategy will enable us to do just that. In a few weeks, we will meet to develop the framework for an STC organization strategic plan. I want to thank everyone for filling out the recent membership survey. Your responses will help inform the development of the strategic plan and improve the services we provide you. We anticipate having a strategic plan ready to present to the membership during the fall Annual Membership Meeting in Nashville, TN.

STC Staff:

Dan Bond, CAE, President & Chief Executive Officer

Melanie Taylor, Director of Operations

Maria Donovan, Member Services Coordinator

In This Issue:
Important Reminder:
Register today for the upcoming 2017 Spring Membership Meeting in Las Vegas on March 13-15. We have a great lineup of industry experts and hot topics. Book your hotel room at the Tropicana Las Vegas as the STC has a special room rate of $99 per night.
Policy makers and the general public know they can trust the STC to provide impartial industry information. Based on STC's strong reputation, we are sought out for comment on industry issues. This has not been more evident than with regard to the issue of recycled rubber. STC has played an important role in educating policymakers, the media and general public about the facts about synthetic turf, and we will continue to do so. 

With a strong reputation, solid management and dedicated volunteers, the STC is positioned for continued growth and relevance in the marketplace. It's an incredible time to part of the industry and I feel honored to have the opportunity to serve. Thank you all.
Call for Volunteers in 2017

STC's committees and task forces are developed to identify and address challenges facing the industry and work with STC staff and Board Directors to provide knowledge-based solutions in the interest of advancing the synthetic turf industry and the Synthetic Turf Council's member programs and services. By volunteering on a committee or task force, members enhance their own professional development and benefit their companies.  

STC Standing Committees:
  • Advocacy
  • Education
  • Ethics
  • European Section
  • Landscape & Recreation
  • Marketing
  • Membership
  • Program
  • Technical Guidelines
  • Golf
If you are interested in serving on one of our Standing Committees in 2017, please contact Dan Bond, STC President & CEO, at  or call 443-640-1067 x143.
STC Announces New Board of Directors and Officers for 2017

At the Annual Membership Meeting in Tucson, the STC introduced its newly elected Board Directors, which then met to elect the Officers. Congratulations and the STC's gratitude to the following:

Chairman Amy Brackin, Account Executive, Liberty Tire Recycling LLC
Vice Chairman Brad Borgman, National Sales Manager, USGreentech
Secretary Mike Cobb, Chief Executive Officer, InnovaNet Group
Treasurer Catherine Eiswerth, Manager, Landscape Architecture, R.F. Binnie & Associates
Director-at-Large Stefan Diderich, Manager External Affairs, Mattex
Immediate Past Chairman Robert Thomas, President, ProGrass

Kevin Barker, VP Sales & Marketing, Controlled Products/Synthetic Turf International LLC
Phil Barlow, Consultant, Shaw Sports Turf
Donna Kent, Marketing Director, ForeverLawn Inc.
Luke McCoy, Landscape Architect, Kaestle Boos Associates, Inc.
David Nardone, Principal, Stantec Sport
Ryan Paris, VP of Operations, AstroTurf
Laith Ross, Principal, RossTarrant Architects

The following completed their terms of service on the STC Board of Directors, and were warmly recognized and thanked for their valued contribution to the STC and the industry:

Jake Alexander, Genan Inc., 4 years of service, including 2 years as Treasurer
Zach Burns, The Motz Group, 3 years of service, including two years as Secretary
Craig Honkomp, Sportworks Field Design, 4 years of service, including 1 year as Vice Chairman and 1 year as Treasurer
Heard Smith, AstroTurf, 4 years of service
STC Welcomes New Staff Members

Melanie Taylor, Dan Bond, and Maria Donovan at the Stringfellow Management Group (SMG) Holiday Luncheon in Forest Hill, MD
Dan Bond joined STC as President & CEO in August 2016. Dan has over eight years of association management experience in senior leadership roles, and earned his Master of Science in Management from The Catholic University of America and undergraduate degree in Political Science from Furman University. He holds the Certification Association Executive (CAE) credential.

Dan serves on multiple volunteer boards of directors and is an active member of ASAE: The Center for Association Leadership. When he isn't working, he enjoys spending time with his wife Michelle, daughter Emma and son Liam. His extraordinarily wonderful family allows him to find time during family trips to visit U.S. Presidential homes.

Maria Donovan serves as the Member Services Coordinator for the Synthetic Turf Council. In this capacity she coordinates member services including membership renewals, new member processing and event registrations and provides administrative support to STC's Director of Operations. Maria joined STC with over ten years of association management experience in meeting planning and membership services with the Association of Government Accountants and the Association of Official Analytical Chemists International. She earned a Bachelors degree from St. Bonaventure University. Outside of STC, Maria can be found on the beach or on the sidelines of one of her son's baseball games or golf matches. She is an avid baseball fan on an ongoing quest to visit all of the nation's ballparks. Look for her as a background extra in a popular political drama on Netflix.

As part of the management change and growth strategy for the STC, Stringfellow Management Group (SMG) was hired in August 2016 as its Association Management Company. SMG will manage the STC from its Maryland headquarters, and will continue to have a local presence in the Atlanta, Georgia area. 

Please be sure to update your records with STC's new contact information:

Synthetic Turf Council
9 Newport Drive, Suite 200
Forest Hill, MD 21050

Phone: 443-640-1067
Fax: 443-640-1031

Dan Bond, CAE, President & CEO
Washington, D.C. 
Ph. Ext. 143
Melanie Taylor, Director of Operations
Atlanta, GA
Ph. Ext. 142
Maria Donovan, Member Services Coordinator
Forest Hill, MD
Ph. Ext. 137
REGISTER NOW: 2017 Spring Membership Meeting 
The 2017 Spring Membership Meeting will attract over 200 industry leaders and feature exceptional networking, Exhibitor Showcase with tabletop displays, and unmatched education with concurrent sessions on industry-related topics, including:
  • Overview of Irrigation Systems as it Relates to Synthetic Turf
  • Novel Infill Based on Renewable Feedstocks
  • Yarn & Fiber Characteristics & Chemistry
  • Innovative Uses for Synthetic Grass on Rooftops
  • Components of an Effective Marketing Campaign
  • Pet Turf Protocols for Disease Prevention & Odor Control
  • "STC Talks" about Your Great Ideas - Talented STC members will give a 10-15 minute talk about their great and powerful ideas on topics in the synthetic turf industry, business community, or just life in general.
Please encourage non-member companies to be at the meeting, either as a new member, or first timer guest. For more information or to request a membership packet, please contact Maria Donovan, STC Member Services Coordinator, at or 443-640-1067 x143.

Thank You to Our Meeting Sponsors:


Shaw Sports Turf ProGrass


Industry Calendar: Where's STC? 

STC Leadership & Strategic Planning Session
January 24-25, 2017
Orlando, FL

STMA Conference & Expo
January 24-27, 2017
Orlando, FL
Visit STC at booth #111

ASBA Winter Meeting
February 24-26, 2017
Riviera Maya, Mexico

2017 STC Spring Membership Meeting
March 13-15 2017
Las Vegas, NV

AMI's Grass Yarn and Tufters Forum
March 27-29, 2017
Madrid, Spain
Dan Bond to present

2017 STC Annual Membership Meeting October 16-18, 2017
Nashville, TN
RSVP for this event

Where will your company be in 2017? Send us your trade show calendar and we will try to make plans to meet you there!
STC and SFA Issue Statement in Response to EPA Status Report

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The  Synthetic Turf Council ("STC") and  Safe Fields Alliance ("SFA") issued the following statement regarding the December 30th, 2016 Environmental Protection Agency Status Report on the Federal Research Action Plan on artificial turf:

"We understand that last Friday's announcement marks incremental progress by the EPA on its Federal Research Action Plan. However, we cannot overstate the pressing need for the Agency to share clear and concise findings as soon as possible in 2017 in order to provide answers and eliminate uncertainty for parents and policymakers."

Read More (Source: Business Wire)
Share this Tweet:
@SynTurfCouncil it's time for EPA to bring clarity to the situation #soundscience #recycledrubber 
Leading Recycled Rubber and Synthetic Turf Industry Group Members Voluntarily Move to Adopt Key Safety Standard

WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Leading members of the recycled rubber and synthetic turf industries today announced that they are jointly cooperating to ensure all synthetic turf and playground infills meet new ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) toy standards for heavy metals to further ensure safety for youth athletes.

Read More (Source: Business Wire)
Act Global Acquires UBU and Turfscape Brands

AUSTIN--Act Global has acquired the UBU and Turfscape brands from Turf Industry Holdings. UBU is best known as the synthetic turf chosen by 14 National Football League teams, numerous NCAA teams and other top-tier venues throughout the United States. This prestigious group of installations includes NRG Stadium in Houston, host venue of the upcoming Super Bowl LI on February 5.

Read More (Source: Act Global)
Creative Synthetic Turf Use for Airports

Article by Donna Kent, ForeverLawn Inc.--AIRPORT BUSINESS, OCTOBER 2016--Many airports have become familiar with synthetic turf while constructing pet relief areas to meet requirements of the Service Animal Relief Act that took effect on Aug. 4. What airport administrators many not realize, however, is the limitless potential that artificial grass has to create a multitude of deluxe services throughout airports, both indoors and out.

Read More (Source: Airport Business)
SportGroup Holding Consolidates Position in Artificial Turf Market with Pittsburgh's ProGrass

OCTOBER 2016--SportGroup Holding, announced that it has acquired Pittsburgh-based ProGrass, one of the nation's leading brands of artificial turf. By adding ProGrass to its existing portfolio of companies and brands (which includes APT, Astroturf, Melos, Polytan, Poligras and Rekortan), SportGroup expands its North America presence and further consolidates its position as a global leader in the sport surfacing market. The acquisition will strengthen SportGroup's proven combination of its worldwide existing contractor network and directly targeted activities to new levels for the better of the industry.

Read More (Source: APT)
Welcome, New STC Members!

Organization Name Key Contact Membership Category
Join Date
BC Pavillion Corporation Christopher Grootendorst Buyer/End-user
Camp Bow Wow Damien D'Emic Buyer/End-user
City of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada Leanne Nadwidny Buyer/End-user
City of Worcester, DPW & Parks-Parks, Recreation & Cemetery Robert Antonelli, Jr. Buyer/End-user
Columbia University Athletics Erich Ely Buyer/End-user
European Turf Group BV Arnoud Fiolet Specialty Manufacturers & Services
General Sports Surfaces, LLC Hector Puentes Builders & Installers
Indiana University Kelley School of Business Mark Ege Student
Joe Wadkins Consulting Group Joe Wadkins Independent Professionals & Consultants
Klass Services Inc. Jeremy Pimental Base Contractors
Locust Valley Central School District Mark Dantuono Buyer/End-user
Martin Brothers Construction Shae Moseley Base Contractors
Nik-Tufting BV/Signgrass Leon V. Zijl Material Manufacturers & Suppliers
Pro VetLogic Professional Products Larry Shively Specialty Manufacturers & Services
Realturf USA Carlos Bataller Material Manufacturers & Suppliers
Rockford Park District Fred Ekberg Buyer/End-user
Rocky Top Sports World Jordan Ogle Buyer/End-user
Small Sided Soccer Association (SSSA) Alan Georgeson Allied Organization 1/6/16
Support in Sport Group (IRL) Ltd. George Mullan Builders & Installers
Town of Castle Rock Bob D. Maloney II Buyer/End-user
Turfgrass Barclay Payne Builders & Installers
University of Tennessee William Strunk Professor/Teacher/Resear
Washington County School District Kevin Holyoak Buyer/End-user
World Rugby Marc Douglas Allied Organization

We Have a Winner!

Congratulations Todd Smith, Academy Sports Turf, the winner of the $100 Amazon Gift Card Prize in our recent Membership Survey contest.  

Thanks to everyone who participated in the survey, which will help support discussions at our January 2017 strategic planning workshop. A full update on the important STC initiatives will be given at the Spring Membership Meeting in Las Vegas on March 13-15.
Meet Tara Borders

This is Tara Borders, the 11 year old granddaughter of Greg Parker. She was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) in August of 2014, shortly after her 9th birthday. She's now back in middle school going about 60% of the time as the chemo makes her tired. But despite her challenges, she still has time to enjoy all her favorite things - ice cream Sundays (with chocolate and no nuts), In-n-Out Burger, and seeing Taylor Swift live in concert (as a VIP, of course).

The day after Thanksgiving she'll receive her last lumbar puncture and chemo through the port in her chest. This will be surgically removed in early December. Then she'll be down to monthly blood tests for 6 months before the cycle starts to elongate. Her prognosis is favorable but their have been some long-term impacts from steroids to her bones that may require a knee or hip replacement by the time she's 20. 

Tara's favorite charities are Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation and Make A Wish
Keeping up with Norris

Here is a recent photo of Norris standing next to his son Kirk Legue's hot rod at a classic car show this past summer. Kirk built it and has won first place many times at various shows. 

If you have news you would like for the STC to post on its website and noted in this e-newsletter, please add Melanie Taylor, to your distribution list. Thank you for your interest!