Trotta Is the 2006 TOCA Environmental Communicator of the Year

Today’s turfgrass manager must always consider the environment when making management decisions, said Turfgrass IPM Specialist Kevin J. Trotta, recipient of the 2006 Turf & Ornamental Communicator’s Association (TOCA) Environmental Communicator of the Year award. If the turf industry wants to be perceived as stewards of the environment, “we must be stewards of the environment,” said Trotta, who received the award sponsored by Advan LLC at the TOCA annual meeting in Napa, Calif. He is the eighth recipient of this award.

The TOCA Environmental Communicator of the Year award is given annually to an active green industry member for outstanding efforts in communicating the benefits of environmental stewardship to a particular audience within the turf and ornamental industry.

Trotta is an educator, speaker and writer about Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and is an expert in the practical application of those sustainable and environmentally friendly practices in turfgrass management. Trotta began his career in the green industry as a lawn and landscape contractor. He also served as an assistant golf course superintendent before becoming head groundskeeper for the North Rockland Central School District in Garnerville, N.Y., in 1988. Trotta holds a B.S. degree in landscape horticulture from the State University of New York and a M.A. degree in environmental studies from City College of New York.

Martin Petrovic, professor of Turfgrass Science, Cornell University, said Trotta “practices what he preaches on the North Rockland Schools site. He is extremely knowledgeable and up to date on all the IPM practices that can be used and uses them.” Petrovic also said, “Having a good message is part of being a good communicator, but being able to deliver the goods is just as important. Kevin’s talks are funny, entertaining, full of useful information that one can and should use. He takes complex concepts and makes them easy to understand, while giving them practical easy-to-use information . . . In short, he is a superb communicator with environmental protection and action in the forefront.”

Kim Heck, CEO of the Sports Turf Managers Association, nominated Trotta for the award, because he is an ambassador for environmental stewardship in the green industry. “His passion for protecting the environment and providing safe and beautiful sports fields for athletes and fans has gained him recognition as a leader in integrated pest management. It is his personal mission to share his knowledge, experience and research with others through presentations, articles and community outreach.”

Den Gardner, executive director of TOCA, said Trotta was an ideal candidate for the communicator award. “His ability to communicate, and to do it well, is an inspiration to all of us,” Gardner said.

Previous winners of the award include Mark Welterlen, Grounds Maintenance magazine; Bill Love, W.R. Love Golf Architecture; Tim Doppel, Atwood Lawncare, Inc.; Doug Fender, Turf Producers International; Allen James, RISE; Ron Dodson, Audubon International; and Jeff Gullickson, Spokane Country Club, Spokane, Wash.

Frank Standfuss presented the award to Trotta in Napa. Standfuss is area sales manager for the award’s sponsor: Advan LLC. Additional information about Trotta is available at

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