January 2018

SportsTurf provides current, practical and technical content on issues relevant to sports turf managers, including facilities managers. Most readers are athletic field managers from the professional level through parks and recreation, universities.

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Page 48 of 59

www.spor 49 January 2018 // chapter of STMA and state conferences affords individuals the opportunity to speak one on one with other professionals and hear about their challenges and how they were able to overcome them. We must always keep looking to the future and trying to invent newer and more effi cient methods. ST: What advice would you give to someone looking to start his or her journey or what piece of advice do you wish someone had given you when you were starting out? CRAWFORD: The two pieces of advice I would give to someone who is beginning their journey in our industry would be fi rst, check your ego at the door. Good ideas can come from anyone, crew members, vendors, other professionals, so you must be open to other ideas to help increase your chances of success. The second piece of advice would be to not become complacent. There are always cultural practices that can be done to help improve your fi elds. ST: You know a lot of sports turf managers. What are they saying are the biggest obstacles to overcome for them to be successful today? CRAWFORD: I believe that our challenge is the same as it has always been, trying to make the safest most aesthetically pleasing fi eld while maximizing play and revenue. With the newer bermudagrass varieties and technology I believe that our natural grass fi elds can handle the increasing demands for play. ST: How has your career benefi tted from being a member of STMA? CRAWFORD: By being an STMA member I am stating to people in the industry that I am a professional and I want to learn from other professionals. The sharing of information is facilitated by STMA in their local fi eld days as well as national conferences. The connections and friendships that you develop will benefi t you and help you throughout your career! ST: How do you think the profession and industry will change in the next 10 years? CRAWFORD: I truly believe that the new bermudagrass varieties can handle as much play as synthetic fi elds. The vigor with which these new bermudagrass varieties grow and recover, coupled with grow light technology, and grow blankets, allows natural grass to handle just as much play as synthetic fi elds. ST: How has social media impacted your work? CRAWFORD: Social media is a great way of promoting your successes as well as challenges that you and your team experience. I have watched many different videos on Twitter that have inspired some problem solving ideas. I also love to read all kinds of different articles that pertain to our industry. ST: What are your passions and interests outside of work? CRAWFORD: My passion is soccer and spending time with my family. Most of my free time is spent taking my daughter to different soccer events or watching soccer games on TV. If I am lucky occasionally I might be able to sneak in a fi shing or hunting trip. /ST/

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