5 Questions: Brian Boase

Photo: Brian Boase
Photo: Brian Boase
Brian Boase
Photo: Brian Boase

Brian Boase

Owner, MIL-SPEC Landscaping, Clarksville, Tenn.

1. How did you get into the business?

I retired after 22 years in the Army. I knew I didn’t want to work inside. There are some startling statistics of guys my age, in their 40s, who retire from the military, then have a heart attack within the first two years. Because you go from this high op-tempo, where you’re always on the go. You’re in Afghanistan, you’re in Iraq, you’re training. Then suddenly you’re just … retired. You’re always moving to nothing. I decided I wanted to keep my body moving. We started out mowing. My wife, who is also a veteran, I talked her into leaving her fancy corporate job to take this adventure with me. When I retired, I asked myself, ‘What do I enjoy?’ I actually enjoy mowing, buzzing around. It started morphing from there.

2. What does the name MIL-SPEC Landscaping mean?

MIL-SPEC is a shortened version of ‘military specification,’ which means the military has some exacting standards when they have companies create vehicles or firearms. Or, say a phone case is MIL-SPEC drop tested. It’s these exacting standards that meet some durability standard. Sometimes, it becomes a conversation starter, an ice-breaker, ‘MIL-SPEC, what does that mean?’ But, for anyone who has been in the military, it’s a little bit of a parody … because veterans will laugh, we tend to break MIL-SPEC stuff a lot. You give a soldier a MIL-SPEC Humvee? They’re going to break it eventually.

3. What’s your favorite tool to get the job done?

I could talk about our excavator or our skid-steer, but believe it or not, without Jobber, all of that stuff is useless. They listen to us, the end user, and make changes based on that. It does everything we want it to do. On the pandemic side is where it’s really come into play — everything can be done remotely. Quotes, billing, contracts, schedules, everything can be done in Jobber. It’s like having an office assistant who works nonstop in the background, 24 hours a day. It allows us to interact in the digital realm, especially with our older clients.

We even have some clients we’ve never met — we’ve done it all through Jobber.

4. What do you like about Clarksville?

Clarksville is home to Fort Campbell. The 101st Airborne, the Screaming Eagles, that’s who is here. If you’ve ever seen Band of Brothers, that’s us. That’s where I retired out of. When I retired, I decided to stay. There are a lot of veterans here. It’s growing like crazy now. We have some manufacturing here, but it’s still very much a good ol’ southern country town. Everybody waves at each other.

5. What do you and the family do for fun?

We have 7 acres, and my friend who I served with, he retired and became a veterinarian. He told me, ‘You should refer to your place as the Ark’ because anything you think of that you could rescue, we have them. Cats and dogs, ducks, geese, French guineas, rabbits, a bearded dragon. We’ve turned our property into this little sanctuary. And, we like shooting. I have three teenage girls. We have a shooting range here, and we love plinking away back there.

Photo: Seth Jones

Seth Jones

Seth Jones is is editor-in-chief of Landscape Management, Golfdom and Athletic Turf magazines. A graduate of Kansas University’s William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Seth was voted best columnist in the industry in 2014 and 2018 by the Turf & Ornamental Communicators Association. He has more than 23 years of experience in the golf and turf industries and has traveled the world seeking great stories.

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