People on the Move: Promotions and hirings from The Greenery, Gothic Landscape and more

March 2, 2021 -  By
Melissa Brock (Photo courtesy of The Greenery)

Melissa Brock (Photo courtesy of The Greenery)

The Greenery added Melissa Brock to the position of director of business development.

In this new position, Brock will be responsible for overseeing the business development team. Her main focus will be to continue to build relationships with clients to generate opportunities for company growth in all markets served by The Greenery including Hilton Head Island, S.C., Bluffton, S.C., Beaufort, S.C., Savannah, Ga., Greenville, S.C., Daytona, Fla., and surrounding areas.

“Brock is someone that every company wants working for them; she’s dedicated and driven and strong in customer relations,” said Lee Edwards, CEO of The Greenery. “We are excited to have her bring new business to our growing company.”

Brock has been with The Greenery for 10 years.

Gothic Landscape recently named Roger Zino, currently vice chairman of the company and veteran of the landscape business, as CEO of the company.

Jon Georgio, Gothic’s current CEO, will remain chairman of the board. Georgio will continue to be active in his areas of passion, including a continued focus on distinctive customer relationships and the company’s unique family culture.

Ron Georgio, the founder of Gothic’s maintenance division, will assume the role of vice chairman, serving in a key governance and special project capacity. Nada Duna will continue in her role as chief operating officer of the maintenance division, which has enjoyed expansion over the past four years and is seen as a key growth area for the company.

Zino previously served as president of ValleyCrest Landscape Maintenance, CEO of ValleyCrest Companies and as vice chairman of Brightview during the company’s integration. Prior to ValleyCrest, he was a partner at McKinsey & Co. and served a range of diversified businesses.

Zino has a BS/BA degree in accounting/computer science from Georgetown University, an MBA from the Harvard Business School and is currently a candidate for his Certificate in Horticulture from UCLA Extension in June 2021.

Clayton Whitesides has joined Takeuchi-U.S. as its Central Midwest regional manager.

Effective Feb. 22, Whitesides will manage all sales development and activity within that territory, which includes Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana and West Texas.

As a regional manager for Takeuchi, Whitesides’ primary focus will be achieving market share objectives in that four-state region through numerous dealer activities, such as development, recruiting, goal setting, sales planning and performance evaluations. He will also be responsible for inventory control, program promotion and communication, forecasting and national and direct rental account support.

Whitesides comes to Takeuchi from Doosan Infracore North America of Suwanee, Ga., where he began his equipment industry career as an inside sales coordinator. From there, he became a district sales manager responsible for a six-state dealer network comprised of eight independent dealerships with 14 locations.

Takeuchi-U.S. also welcomed Ian Poole as its new inside sales representative.

Poole will be responsible for sales development and support for Takeuchi’s dealers and direct accounts. Additionally, he will support Takeuchi’s regional business managers in their efforts, including dealer development and recruitment, inventory control, forecasting, program promotion, communication and more.

Ruppert Landscape recently promoted Brian Kinsella to lead the company’s King of Prussia, Pa., location as branch manager.

Kinsella attended Rowan College at Gloucester County and is a Certified Landscape Technician. He has been with the Ruppert organization for more than 13 years, having joined right out of college as a crew member in the company’s Toughkenamon, Pa., location.

He worked his way up to the level of enhancement manager and served in this role at both the King of Prussia and Toughkenamon locations at different times.

He was recognized with the company’s Branch Impact Award in 2018 for his dedication and contributions to the Toughkenamon team. In 2019, he took part in Ruppert’s Associate Branch Manager leadership development program, which was designed to prepare talented team members to take on future opportunities. That opportunity arose in late 2020, as an opportunity presented itself in the King of Prussia branch with the existing branch manager, Tim Schofield, transitioning to the role of division project manager.

As branch manager, Kinsella will be responsible for the overall welfare of the King of Prussia branch, including the safety and development of his team, strategic planning and budgeting, training, customer service and day-to-day operations.

Ruppert Landscape also honored employees as the company presented its annual awards at the conclusion of its first virtual Management Development Days (MDD) conference.

Typically, MDD is a two-day training event where managers from across the company come together to learn from one another and celebrate accomplishments. With the challenges presented by the pandemic and keeping employees’ health and safety top of mind, company leadership decided to opt for a virtual program this year, which was presented to more than 500 employees on Feb. 19. The program featured 2020 highlights from company leadership, a look at the next five-year plan, a Q&A with CEO Craig Ruppert and more, culminating in the annual awards ceremony. The winners include:

  • Clyde Vadner Merit Award: This award recognizes the individual who has contributed continuous, consistent, long-term hard work, dedication and job skill that has helped to shape the company. This award is named in memory of Clyde Vadner, who early on in the company’s history played an integral role in developing the training program, which has helped develop the many leaders who make up the organization today. This year’s recipient is Michael Vispi, branch manager in the Lilburn, Ga., landscape management branch, who has been with Ruppert for more than 17 years.
  • Achievement Award: This award recognizes the employee who has made a significant contribution in 2020 through outstanding job execution and high-quality results. This year’s recipient is Paul Pestun, director of business development in the landscape construction division, who has been with Ruppert for more than eight years.
  • Distinction Award: This award is presented in appreciation for exemplary dedication and devotion to the principles and ideals of our company. This year, the Distinction Award was collectively presented to team members of the accounting and payroll department.

The Davey Tree Expert Co. named Jess Divin to district manager of Davey’s East San Antonio Residential/Commercial (R/C) services office.

Divin started his Davey career in 2007 in Boulder, Colo., where he held positions of climber, crew leader and plant health care technician until 2012. Divin left Davey for a period of time to work as an urban forester park ranger superintendent until returning to Davey in 2019 as a sales arborist.

Divin is an International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Certified Arborist and holds qualifications in tree risk assessment, Texas oak wilt and fire risk reduction through ISA. He also holds a Texas Department of Agriculture pesticide applicator license.

Divin earned a bachelor’s degree from Colorado State University in natural resources management and rangeland ecology.

Sarah Webb

About the Author:

Sarah Webb is Landscape Management's former managing editor. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Wittenberg University, where she studied journalism and Spanish. Prior to her role at LM, Sarah was an intern for Cleveland Magazine and a writing tutor.

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