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News & Press: OTF News

A Greener Future Indeed

Tuesday, December 15, 2015  
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Last week's OTF Conference & Show and OSU Green Industry Short Course was a resounding success! Thanks to all of you that attended and participated in this annual gathering of industry professionals.

The 2015 version of the Conference & Show solidified our position as one of the top regional events of its kind in the country. Attendance this year was the largest in nearly a decade, with more than 2,300 participants, including over 1,600 educational registrants. 

A re-invented event schedule included the return of Monday workshops, nearly 200 hours of education sessions and seven hours of dedicated tradeshow only time. The tradeshow saw a modest increase of 5% in exhibitors and 3% in show square footage, but exhibitors realized a dramatic increase in show floor traffic during open hours.


Keynote address presented by Syngenta

Ohio State head wrestling coach, Tom Ryan, shared a passionate message about our ability to make a choice every day we wake up. Will we let obstacles get in our way and impact every aspect of our being, or will we choose to take it in stride, persevere and seek joy in we do?

Life is full of ups and downs, both personally and professionally, the only thing you can control is how your respond. Thanks to Coach Ryan for his inspiring message and for bringing along some championship hardware!

11 Students Receive Financial Assistance

Congratulations to our 2015 Scholarship recipients:

James Buzard, Ohio State - R.D. Baker Memorial Scholarship
Amanda Folck, Ohio State - R.D. Baker Memorial Scholarship
Gail Gu, Ohio State - OTF Scholarship
Brian Malin, Clark State - OTF Scholarship
Nathan McKinnis, Ohio State - R.D. Baker Memorial Scholarship
Devin Rice, Ohio State ATI - OTF Scholarship
Robert Ruman, Ohio State ATI - OTF Scholarship
Michael Sanders, Ohio State - Don Sweda Memorial Scholarship
Steven Shavel, Ohio State - R.D. Baker Memorial Scholarship
Tanner Turner, Ohio State - R.D. Baker Memorial Scholarship
Rebecca Wicker, Ohio State - OTF Scholarship

Meet the recipients, click here for the scholarship video

Collegiate Turf Bowl

Teams from Clark State Community College, Ohio State ATI and Cincinnati State Community College participated in the annual Turf Bowl competition, testing students turfgrass knowledge.

Congratulations to all participants and to our winning team from Ohio State ATI of Marq Fairbanks, Max McLain, Bob Duling and Charlie Mader.

High School Turf Bowl

Teams from Knox County Career Center, Tolles Career and Technical Center, Patrick Henry High School and Ohio Hi-Point Career Center competed in the High School Turf Bowl competition. We are grateful for the opportunity to expose the industry to these young students! 

Congratulations to all participants and to our winning team from Knox County Career Center, Morgan Hunter, McKenzie Hunter, Josiah Grimm and Hailey Fultz.

Award Winners

OTF is pleased to continue the tradition of recognizing excellence with the industry. We understand how much time and dedication is required to excel in the industry and our 2015 award recipients epitomize what it means to be dedicated to your craft.

Lifetime Achievement Award

Mr. David Willoughby, Ohio State ATI (Retired)

Professional of the Year

Mr. Jim Scott, Knox County Career Center

Environmental Stewardship

Mr. Zachary Wike, Beavercreek Golf Club

Idea Sharing At Its Finest!

With more than 1,600 educational registrants, almost 100 instructors from around the world and four days to network and share ideas, the OTF Conference & Show and OSU Green Industry Short Course served as the place to be for the region's green industry professional to develop their skills.

Education rooms were full of people itching to learn about the latest practices, products and theories which can have an immediate impact on their programs. These sessions were more than just presentations, they were an interactive experience, where attendees often traded comments, asked questions and shared experiences during the program.


Attendees and exhibitors alike left the event energized, full of ideas, having made new contacts and ready to get 2016 off to a great start.

Survey results indicate that 92% of attendees are planning to return in 2016 and would recommend the event to their peers. Additionally, 93% of responding exhibitors have indicated that they plan on returning in 2016 as well.

Mark your calendars...the 2016 OTF Conference & Show and OSU Green Industry Short Course will take place the week of December 5th in Columbus.

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