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BCLNA honours exemplary members at 2020 awards gala

February 4, 2021  By BC Landscape & Nursery Association

The BC Landscape and Nursery Association honoured some of their most exemplary members at the annual awards gala last November.

Hosted by Bill Mackenzie and Lynda Krabbendam, the virtual event took place on Nov. 27, 2020, and recognized some of the most deserving individuals in BC’s horticultural industry. Here were the winners.

Brian Minter

Garden Communicator of the Year: Brian Minter, Minter Country Garden Ltd.


This award is presented to an individual providing outstanding communication to the public on garden and landscape topics. In addition to letting the public in on the next hot garden trend, Brian Minter readily advises on available resources, clearly presents the benefits of the horticultural industry and warns about potential risks, as he did when the Japanese Beetle arrived in the Lower Mainland. Most importantly, Minter encourages the public to care about horticultural life. He regularly writes for newspapers, presents on radio and TV and is a frequent keynote speaker at industry-related events.


Gary Jones

Educator of the Year: Gary Jones, Kwantlen Polytechnic University

This award is presented to a person who works primarily within horticulture, educating the industry and/or public about the sector, its products or services. A faculty member at the School of Horticulture at KPU, Gary Jones has inspired young minds for decades and educated the next generation of horticulturalists. He is also a regular contributor to Greenhouse Canada magazine, drawing on national and international perspectives in identifying and communicating about horticultural issues that matter.


Brent Mooney

Member of the Year: Brent Mooney, Golden Spruce Nurseries Ltd.

The BCLNA Member of the Year is presented to an individual whose services or contributions to the industry and to the Association have been exemplary. In this extraordinary year, Brent Mooney stepped up in a way that personifies the term “exemplary.” His tireless research uncovered financial support programs for BCLNA members and his networking skills brought in industry experts to help members through the impending crisis precipitated by COVID-19. As a first-year board member, he jumped into the deep end with no hesitation.


Victor Kulla

Young Member of the Year: Victor Kulla, Huckleberry Landscape Design

The importance of bringing young industry members into BCLNA association can’t be overstated. They have the ability to look at issues from a new perspective. They bring new ideas to the table. Hopefully their knees don’t ache when the weather turns cold. This year’s recipient has only been with the BCLNA for a few years, but he’s already into volunteer-mode, as well as committing time to advancing his industry skills and education. The BCLNA is looking forward to working with him for a long time, and are pleased to present him with the Young Member of the Year Award for 2020.


Heike Stippler

Volunteer of the Year: Heike Stippler, Heike Designs Inc.

This Award honours a member who has provided significant time away from their business, whether it’s assisting with training sessions, meeting the public at an event or serving on a committee. Meanwhile, they manage to keep their own business running, their clients satisfied and their staff productive. For Heike Stippler, volunteering has always had two benefits – the betterment of the industry and giving back to the community that has helped her build her business. The differing perspectives of BCLNA members, whether retailers, growers or fellow landscapers, have enabled her to continuously learn new things and achieve higher personal growth.


John Folkerts

Lifetime of Service: John Folkerts, Linnaea Nurseries Ltd.

Throughout his years in the industry, John Folkerts has always been passionate and supportive of the ornamental nursery sector in BC. From his early years at Reid-Collins while he was BCLNA President, until now with Linnaea Nurseries, Folkerts’ life has revolved around horticulture, the nursery and family. Folkerts is known as a knowledgeable, engaged industry mentor providing information and expertise to those new to the industry. While Folkerts is not quite finished working in his present role, BCLNA’s past presidents chose to honour him in 2020 as an industry leader for his appreciation for high quality and standards, in his kind and generous way.


Supplier of the Year: Mertin Chevrolet GMC Buick Cadillac Ltd.

The Supplier of the Year award is presented for outstanding service by an individual or company that supplies non-green goods or services to the industry. BCLNA members benefit from the support of a wide range of suppliers who help the membership in many ways, from discounts, to sponsorships to assistance at association events. This year’s award winner, Mertin GM, goes beyond the available member discounts to provide a much-appreciated bonus.

Congratulations to all the 2020 winners. For the winners of the landscape project awards, visit the BCLNA website here.


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