Ardith Beveridge, AAF, AIFD, PFCI, CAFA, is the director of education and an instructor at Koehler & Dramm’s Institute of Floristry in Minneapolis. She has demonstrated floral design on national and cable channels and PBS stations. She creates floral designs for prestigious events, such as the annual White House Easter Egg Roll, the Tournament of Roses Parade and the Minnesota State Governor’s office. Ardith has achieved membership in the American Academy of Floriculture, the American Institute of Floral Designers, Professional Floral Communicators-International and Canadian Academy of Floral Arts. Ardith is the author of “Faux Florals in Glass,” “Fabulous Faux Florals,” “Fabulous Faux Florals for Weddings,” and “Wreaths and Wall Flowers,” and has compiled “Terminology of Floristry Techniques” and “Design Styles and Forms.” In addition, Ardith is a licensed auctioneer. She enjoys traveling and spending time with her family, especially her grandson.
In addition to operating a successful retail flower shop for most of her 45-year floral career, Carol Caggiano, AIFD, PFCI, has traveled extensively sharing her design skills, creative techniques and business knowledge with florists in more than 300 programs throughout the United States. Japan, Korea, Italy & Singapore have been part of the itinerary where she has been invited to teach and present design programs. Garden Clubs also have enjoyed Carol’s presentations, as have other community groups and organizations. As a two-time regional finalist in the prestigious America’s Cup Floral Design Competition, Carol’s achievements in floral design are well recognized. Several floral industry publications have featured her designs. As the floral design director for a floral wire service, Carol heads a group of florists who create and photograph floral arrangements available for order in florist shops nationwide. Carol has created floral designs for Presidential Inauguration events and floats for the Rose Parade in Pasadena, Calif., on New Year’s Day. She is a member of the American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communicators – International. When Carol is not designing flowers, she is spending time with her daughters and granddaughter.
Heather de Kok, AAF, AIFD, PFCI, and her family own Grower Direct Fresh Cut Flowers in Edmonton, Alberta. With 50 stores, it is Canada’s largest flower franchising company. Heather’s store is the official training store for the franchise, and she leads its hands-on workshops about floral design techniques and trends. Heather also presents floral programs for seniors, garden clubbers, nurses and children’s groups. Heather is a member of the American Academy of Floriculture, American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communicators – International. In 2010, she represented Canada in an international floral design competition in Brazil. In 2008, she participated as a designer on two award-winning floats during the Tournament of Roses Parade, was the featured designer in Toronto for Flowers Canada and served as judge in SAF’s Sylvia Cup Floral Design Competition. Besides flowers, Heather loves shoes and spending time with her family.
A fourth generation flower grower from the Netherlands, Lane DeVries is the president and CEO of the Sun Valley Group. The company has operations in California and Canada and grows tulips, lilies, irises, foliage, evergreens, and other specialty flowers. Lane immigrated to the U.S. in 1983 after his family sold its farm in Holland, and soon after, landed a job at Sun Valley. After building the company’s first Dutch glass greenhouse, he was promoted to greenhouse manager and then general manager. Three years later in 1991, he and two Dutch partners purchased Sun Valley. Lane is active in several organizations and is chairman of the California Cut Flower Commission, trustee for the American Floral Endowment and on the Board of Directors for the Society of American Florists. He lives in Arcata, Calif., with his wife Kathryn and two children.
Tim Farrell, AAF, AIFD, PFCI, is an accomplished floral designer, educator and retail shop owner for more than 25 years. Tim owns and operates Farrell’s Florist in Drexel Hill, Pa., and teaches floral design and business skills to florists across the country. His work has been featured in several national publications, and he has designed flowers for high profile events such as Presidential Inaugurations and the Academy Awards. Tim also represented the United States in an international floral design competition in Tokyo in 2006. He is a member of the American Academy of Floriculture, American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communicators – International. Tim loves traveling with his wife and three children, doing weekend home improvements, and just spending time with family and friends.
Lisa Greene, AAF, AIFD, PFCI is the marketing and creative director for Martin’s Flowers and Gifts in Methuen, Mass. Being a resident of the Merrimack Valley for over 20 years, she has become "Florist Lisa" to many flower aficionados. As a teacher and speaker, Lisa has worked with such institutions as the New York Botanical Gardens, North Shore Community College, Ashworth College and the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts. In 2005, Lisa was a member of the team that provided flowers for the presidential inauguration. Originally from Belchertown Mass., Lisa currently resides on Boston's North Shore with her husband and son. Lisa is a member of the American Academy of Floriculture, the American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communicators-International. When not working with flowers, Lisa enjoys crocheting jewelry of wire and stained glass artistry. The Greene family shares its home with a Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
Toviana Jackson is a second-generation florist of Dandelions Flowers & Gifts in Eugene, Oregon. Although she grew up working in her family’s business, she pursued her bachelor’s degree in history and lived throughout the United States before settling back in Eugene in 2005. As the marketing director and special events coordinator at Dandelions, Toviana shares her love of flowers and her community with others. She and her husband have three children whom can often be seen at their store with her as she passes on the joy and beauty of flowers to them. She also enjoys camping, gardening and playing with her rambunctious Labrador.
Leanne Kesler, AIFD, PFCI, is the director, president, and with her husband David, co-owner of Floral Design Institute, Inc., in Portland, Ore. Together, Leanne and David have built Floral Design Institute into the largest privately held floral design school in the world. Leanne is a floral designer, speaker, educator and floral business consultant. Her expertise encompasses care and handling, color, principles and elements of floral design, weddings and trends. She has held leadership posts in the American Institute of Floral Designers and Northwest Florist’s Association, and she is a member of Professional Floral Communicators - International. Outside of the floral industry, you will often find Leanne working out at the gym or running through the city of Portland preparing for the next half marathon and burning calories so she can enjoy her second favorite past time, fine foods and wine.
Mandy Majerik, AIFD, PFCI, is truly a modern age flower child. Although staying true to her Alabama Southern roots, Mandy has made her move into the national limelight as one of the floral industry’s rising stars. Weddings and events are her area of expertise, landing her favorable spots in floral industry magazines such as Floral Management and Florists’ Review, and floral enthusiasts publications such as International Floral Art (a yearbook of original and innovative designs), and numerous wedding publications. This third-generation floral designer is an active member in several associations such as the American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communicators-International. Mandy enjoys traveling the country presenting industry floral shows as well as working with brides all over the Southeast making their wedding dreams come true. Mandy resides in Birmingham, Ala., sharing her time between her floral workshop, Hothouse Design Studio, and her loft with Jasper, her spoiled cocker spaniel.
Actively involved in the floral industry for over 35 years, Joyce Mason-Monheim, AIFD, PFCI, has appeared as a guest speaker and floral designer at hundreds of schools, colleges, floral venues and events throughout the country. She has received numerous industry design awards from local, regional and national events. Joyce is active in many prestigious floral trade organizations, including the American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communicators - International. She has designed at the Rose Parade and Presidential Inaugurations, and her floral designs have been published in multiple floral trade magazines as well as Martha Stewart Weddings. Joyce is married with two children and lives in Tucson, Ariz.
Floral expert, speaker and author, Sharon McGukin, AAF, AIFD, PFCI, is known for her captivating style of floral ‘edutainment,’ educational tips with entertaining insights, and Southern charm. Sharing her 40 years of experience, Sharon travels across the U.S. and Canada on a regular basis presenting hands-on floral demonstrations and has designed flowers in almost every state as well as internationally. She actively participates with Professional Floral Communicators – International and the American Institute of Floral Designers and is a member of the American Academy of Floriculture. Sharon is the author of “Flowers of the Heart: A Bride's Guide to Choosing Flowers for her Wedding.” She lives in Carrollton, Ga., and enjoys cooking big Southern meals for relaxed gatherings of family and friends. Sharon and her husband, Tim, especially enjoy visits from their adult children, grandchild, and even the grand-dogs. They also enjoy gardening fruits, vegetables and, of course, flowers.
Stephen Rittner, Ph.D., is director of The Rittners School of Floral Design in Boston. He is a third generation in the floral field, and for more than 30 years has taught professional floristry to thousands of students. Stephen received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Tufts University and his doctorate from Boston University in liberal arts, science and education. His particular interest in education is in curriculum development and differing ways of presenting information to facilitate learning. He has authored or co-authored books on floral design, been published in floral trade magazines, and produced over 100 instructional videos and over 80 instructional ebooks on floral design.
Shelby Shy began her career in the floral industry when she was 14. After graduating from the University of Kansas with a bachelor’s of science with an emphasis in business communications and marketing, Shelby took a detour from flowers to work in merchandising for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Five years later, she returned to her family’s business and became the third-generation florist of Shirley’s Flowers and Gifts, Inc., in Rogers, Ark. In 2007, Shelby took on the roles as the shop’s manager, marketing director and senior wedding consultant. Shelby is active in the floral industry, serving on the Society of American Florists (SAF) Convention Committee and board member of the Arkansas Florists Association. She also presents educational seminars at SAF and state floral conventions across the country. Shelby lives with her husband and two children in Bentonville Ark., where she loves spending time with family and friends and doing anything outdoors with nature.
Brian J. Wheat, AAF, PFCI, is the CEO of Lafayette Florist & Greenhouses, Inc. in Lafayette, Colo. Brian runs this third-generation family business, which started in 1949. With more than 25 years in the floral industry, Brian is a Colorado State University Master Gardener. He is a member of Professional Floral Communicators – International and the American Academy of Floriculture. His business and civic contributions include past-president of the Garden Centers of Colorado, past board member of the Colorado Greenhouse Growers, U.S. Air Force veteran, 18-year board member of the Lafayette Chamber of Commerce, Rotarian and a Rotary Paul Harris fellow. In addition, Brian is an accomplished artist who produces the weekly cartoon “The Flower Guy,” which is published online and in his local newspaper, “Wallflower” canvas art and teaches classes in gardening and illustration. Brian lives just outside Boulder, Colo., with his wife Lori and son Tanner. He enjoys sports, traveling, art, movies, volunteering, gardening and singing karaoke.
J. Robbin Yelverton, AAF, AIFD, PFCI, CF, is co-owner of Blumz…by JRDesigns Floral & Event Professionals in metro Detroit as well as a floral designer and educator with more than 30 years experience. The National Alliance of Floral Associations, Mississippi Florist Association and Michigan Floral Association have recognized Robbin with Designer of the Year accolades. As an award-winning designer, Robbin presents educational floral design programs to professionals at the American Institute of Floral Designers National Symposium, regional and state floral trade associations as well as wholesale and retail audiences. He is a member of the American Academy of Floriculture, American Institute of Floral Designers and Professional Floral Communicators-International, and Robbin is a Michigan Certified Florist. Robbin credits his grandmothers who shared their love of African violets, which through a twisted and winding road, led him to being who and where he is today.
Society of American Florists
Jennifer Sparks oversees the Society of American Florists’ consumer education, marketing, and research programs. Having been with the Society for almost 20 years, Jennifer feels fortunate to be able to see all aspects of the industry at work -- how floral products get from the field, to the florist, to the people who ultimately benefit from the true power of flowers. She experiences daily the research-proven benefits of flowers creating instant delight and happiness. Jennifer lives in Lorton, Va., and loves the beach, collecting sea glass, hiking, gardening, and spending time with her husband, two children, and Shetland Sheepdog.
Society of American Florists
Jenny Scala is the director of marketing and communications for the Society of American Florists. In addition to being responsible for communications about the association’s marketing programs and the floral industry’s speakers bureau, she coordinates the industry’s longest running, live national annual floral design contest, the Sylvia Cup Design Competition. With more than 10 years experience with SAF, Jenny talks with flower growers, florists and floral designers from all across the country and around the world and has participated in floral efforts decorating Presidential Inauguration events. She sends floral gifts to family and friends, and loves it when her husband surprises her with flowers. Jenny lives in Alexandria, Va., near George Washington’s Mount Vernon, and enjoys monthly potlucks, book club meetings and Kennedy Center performances.
Society of American Florists
Sharon provides administrative support for the Society of American Florists’ consumer marketing and research and information departments, and the Professional Floral Communicators-International. Sharon lives near George Washington’s Mount Vernon, and enjoys gardening, biking, the shore, and spending time with her husband, son, and spoiled English bulldog, Daisy.
Live Like a Flower: Open Up and Grow New Buds
Christine Arylo is a transformational teacher, speaker and best-selling author. After earning her MBA and climbing the corporate ladder, she chose to devote her life to creating a new reality for women and girls, one based on self-love and true feminine power instead of the relentless pursuit of having to do, be and have it all. She is the best-selling author of two books, "Choosing ME before WE" and "Madly in Love With Me," "The Daring Adventure to Becoming Your Own Best Friend," and the co-founder of Inner Mean Girl Reform School, which has helped over 23,000 women transform their inner critics. She is also the founder of the international Day of Self-Love, February 13th. She is affectionately known as "The Queen of Self-Love." Christine has been featured on CBS, ABC, FOX, E!, The Huffington Post, and on radio shows and stages around the world, including TEDx. To find out more about Christine, go to www.ChooseSelfLove.com.
Live Like a Flower: Pollinate
Jayme Barrett, the leading authority on inspired living and best-selling author of “Feng Shui Your Life,” empowers individuals to design their lives for increased balance, energy and motivation. Specializing in techniques for personal fulfillment, prosperity and integrated health, Jayme is passionate about helping people create a blueprint for happiness in their homes and lives. She has appeared on numerous national television shows and been featured in dozens of print publications. To learn more, visit www.jaymebarrett.com.
Live Like a Flower: Grow Roots
Vanessa Diffenbaugh is author of the novel “The Language of Flowers,” a New York Times best seller, which has been translated into more than 40 languages. She is also the founder of the Camellia Network, a nationwide movement to support youth transitioning from foster care. The network’s name emphasizes the belief in the interconnectedness of humanity: each gift a young person receives will be accompanied by a camellia, a reminder that the destiny of our nation lies in the hands of our youngest citizens.
Live Like a Flower: Live Colorfully—Dare to be Different
Kelli Ellis, author of “Do I look skinny in this house?,” is an award-winning, internationally known celebrity interior designer and design psychology expert. Kelli splits time as an author, brand ambassador, educator, life coach, speaker, professional blogger and on-camera designer. She is the featured designer on TLC’s long-running “Clean Sweep,” star of HGTV’s “Takeover My Makeover” and “Celebrity Holiday Homes” and Hulu's “Las Vegas Homemakeover.” In addition, Kelli has guest appeared on NBC, CBS and ABC and has been featured in, “CA Home + Design,” “LUXE,” “The New York Times,” “Veranda,” “LV Luxury,” “Riviera, Angeleno,” “OC Magazine,” and “Las Vegas Luxury.” The web knows Kelli on eHow.com as the resident interior design expert giving advice to millions everyday. Visit www.kelliellis.com.
Design & Environmental Psychologist
Dak Kopec holds a doctorate degree in environmental psychology, two master’s degrees (architecture and community psychology), and an undergraduate degree in health sciences. He is certified by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing as a Master Certified Health Education Specialist, and certified by the Environmental Health Association as a Healthy Homes Specialist. Dak has served twice as a visiting lecturer at Virginia Commonwealth University in Doha Qatar and as visiting professor at the University of Hawaii in the schools of Architecture and Medicine. He is the director of the Boston Architectural College’s Master of Design Studies in Design for Human Health. Dak’s publications include several journal articles, three books, and two monographs.
Live Like a Flower: Live Beautifully and Be Grateful for Rain
Vicki Norris, president of Restoring Order® - a professional organizing service for homes and businesses, has turned her passion for order into a lifestyle brand helping consumers lighten up so they can live their true priorities. Vicki is a veteran and pioneer in the field of life management. Since 1999, she has taken her professional organizing company from a sole proprietorship to a six division company with a range of offerings for every organizing need and budget. In addition to being a professional organizing expert, Vicki is a keynote speaker and trainer, author of “Reclaim Your Life,” “Get Organized for Good” and “Restoring Order to Your Home,” blogger, business owner, product designer and distributor, and entrepreneur. Visit www.VickiNorris.com to get inspired!
Live Like a Flower: Soak Up the Sun
MJ Ryan is one of the creators of the New York Times bestselling “Random Acts of Kindness” series and the author of “This Year I Will…,” “The Happiness Makeover” and “Attitudes of Gratitude” among other titles. Dubbed “an expert in human fulfillment and change,” she specializes in coaching individuals and teams around the world, and speaks on cultivating positive emotions for greater success and happiness. Her website is www.mj-ryan.com.
Jeanne Benedict, host of DIY Network's “Weekend Entertaining,” is a party expert, chef and author of four books including “The Sophisticated Cookie” and “Celebrations.” She shares easy, uncomplicated ways to use flowers to make a statement at parties and get-togethers.
Stefanie Fauquet is the owner and editor of the mom and lifestyle blog, MommyMusings.com. For the past seven years, she has shared her adventures of life, food and travel — basically all of her favorite things — with readers near and far. Stefanie is mom to an 8-year-old daughter, and she resides with her family in the Tampa Bay area.
Jenny Ingram, the voice and personality of jennyonthespot.com, lives on a peninsula in the greater Seattle area. She is a mother of three, wife, friend, and former history teacher who awkwardly stumbled into the blogging scene in 2004. Part lifestyle blog, part mom blog, part art, craft, food, and photography blog, Jenny On the Spot is about taking on life and telling life's stories through words, pictures, humor and of course, video. Jenny considers coffee a food group and would say sparkle is her favorite color. And green. But please, don't make her choose between green and sparkle. That could get ugly.
Alicia Peiffer is the mom of two preschool-aged boys. She blogs at Making Time For Mommy about parenting children with Special Needs, causes she supports and products she recommends. She is the coordinator of cbSocially for Collective Bias where she spends her days immersed in social media. She enjoys spending time with her family, shopping, drinking Starbucks and list making.
Linda Vertlieb is the blogger for FrugalPhillyMom.com, a family friendly local resource for deals, events, tips, reviews and giveaways. Linda is a mom to a girl and new baby boy and married to a Philadelphia firefighter.
Melissa is a Chicago-based sustainable fashion designer, art print/card designer, and the blogger behind Bubby and Bean: Living Creatively. Her blog focuses on “all the wonderful things,” such as design, fashion, home decor, DIY projects, travel, music, photography, green living, fun food and drink, and other musings about life, love, and learning. Melissa is the head designer for eco-fashion label Mountains of the Moon, and she loves animals (with an especially weak spot for dogs), traveling, summertime, margaritas, the colors grey and yellow, minimalist design, vintage and sustainable fashion, live music, avocados, Audrey Hepburn, estate sales, and all things lemon.
Society of American Florists
Katie Hendrick reports on flowers trends for industry professionals as a contributing editor of the Society of American Florists’ Floral Management magazine. Katie held an editorial internship with Southern lifestyle magazine Garden & Gun. She enjoys tennis, running, cooking and cheering for her alma maters' sports teams, the Wake Forest Demon Deacons and the Florida Gators.