RISE Appoints New Leadership, Hands Out Awards During 26th Annual Meeting

RISE Appoints New Leadership, Hands Out Awards During 26th Annual Meeting

RISE New Governing Board 2016

Incoming and outgoing RISE Governing Board members were recognized during the association’s annual meeting August 29 – Sept. 1 in Williamsburg, VA. From left: John Johnson, outgoing Board member, PROKoZ, Inc.; Dan Stahl, immediate past chairman, OHP, Inc.; Jonathan Sweat, incoming chairman, BASF Corporation; Aaron Hobbs, RISE president; James Guard, outgoing Board member, Monsanto Company.

Almost 200 members and guests of RISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment) attended the trade association’s 26th annual meeting in Williamsburg, VA, in late August.


Reflecting the spirit of Colonial Williamsburg and the 2016 election year, the meeting’s theme was “Red, White & YOU: Revolutionary Pathways.” Attendees were encouraged to share photos and posts to social media using the hashtags #redwhiteYOU and #RISEam.

During the meeting, RISE Governing Board members and officers were appointed, long-time industry professional Tom Delaney was recognized as the 2016 RISE Grassroots Excellence Award honoree, and RISE member volunteers were honored with the Strategic Driver Award.

“This year’s annual meeting marked the second year of performance on our five-year strategic plan 20/20 Vision,” says Aaron Hobbs, RISE President. “Our members’ enthusiasm is high, and we had great engagement here in Williamsburg as we worked together to set objectives for 2017 and beyond. Our work ensures a vibrant future for our industry, so we can continue to deliver cutting-edge solutions to solve people’s pest and plant health problems.”

New Governing Board Members And Officers

During the annual meeting, the RISE Governing Board met and appointed new members. Beginning their terms as officers are Jonathan Sweat of BASF Corporation, Chairman, and Pramod Thota of FMC Corporation, Vice Chairman; while Darren Horst of Central Garden & Pet, will continue serving as treasurer.

Frank Bates of SiteOne Landscape Supply, and Paul Simons of Dow AgroSciences LLC, are beginning three-year Board terms. Completing their terms were James Guard of Monsanto Company, John Johnson of PROKoZ, Inc., and Dan Stahl of OHP, Inc., who finished his term as chairman and will now serve as the Board’s immediate past chair.

Others continuing their terms include:
• Jeff Alvis of AMVAC Environmental Products
• Donald Chew of PBI/Gordon Corporation
• Bill Culpepper of SePRO Corporation
• Gilles Galliou of Bayer
• John Gertz of Primera Inc.
• Frank Jusich of Central Life Sciences
• Scott Reasons of Syngenta
• John Smith of WinField Solutions

In his remarks as the new chairman, Sweat said, “As we amplify our voice in the conversation and build upon our successful advocacy model and strategic plan, we’re forging a revolutionary pathway for our industry.”

Tom Delaney RISE Award 2016

During its 26th Annual Meeting on Aug. 31, RISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment) gave Tom Delaney its 2016 Grassroots Excellence Award for his outstanding leadership in grassroots development for RISE at the local and state levels. Pictured from left: Dan Stahl, RISE Governing Board immediate past chairman; Aaron Hobbs, RISE president; Tom Delaney, RISE 2016 Grassroots Excellence Award honoree; and Jonathan Sweat, RISE Governing Board chairman.

Tom Delaney Receives Grassroots Excellence Award

RISE also took the opportunity to recognize Tom Delaney with the 2016 Grassroots Excellence Award for his outstanding leadership in grassroots development at the local and state levels.

RISE partnered with Delaney in 2006 in an effort to build a national grassroots network to address lawn care issues. He’s been a long-time member of the RISE Legislative Affairs Committee, and represents the industry on EPA’s Pesticide Program Dialog Committee. He recently retired after 27 years with the National Association of Lawn Care Professionals.

“Tom has been one of our industry’s most active grassroots builders and supporters, and he was always ready to engage the lawn care industry and help RISE reach lawn care operators across the country,” said Stahl.

The RISE Grassroots Excellence Award is presented annually to an individual, group, or allied association that demonstrates outstanding efforts and contributions to furthering the mission, vision, and goals of the specialty pesticide and fertilizer industry with public policy and advocacy through grassroots engagement.

Recognizing RISE Members’ Volunteer Engagement

The Strategic Driver Award recognizes RISE members for their work in advocacy, community building, investing for the future, and organizational strength — the four drivers that make up the association’s five-year strategic plan. In addition to their professional jobs, these honorees volunteer on behalf of the entire industry.

Frank Wong of Bayer, was recognized for his grassroots engagement in Montgomery County, MD, with the Community Building Strategic Driver Award. The members of the association’s Communications Committee were awarded the Investing for the Future Strategic Driver for their work in attracting the next generation of engaged volunteers and refreshing the association’s brand.

The Strategic Driver Award for Organizational Strength was awarded to Karen Larson-Clarke, for her work with the Regulatory Affairs Committee, and the members of the Regulatory Affairs Committee were recognized with the Advocacy Strategic Driver Award for increasing EPA staff knowledge about pesticides and their work on Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA) 4.

In addition to members being recognized, Karen Reardon, RISE Vice President of Public Affairs, was acknowledged for her decade of service with the association. Prior to that, she was with CropLife America for 10 years.