Ramona Fry, Element Design
RLA, LEED AP BD+C, CLARB Certified Landscape Architect
Ramona is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with almost 20 years of experience in site project design and management. She is a Principal and Senior Partner at Element Design, a landscape architecture, civil engineering and planning firm located in Lexington and Louisville, with a wide variety of experience in project types. Her practice has focused primarily on public work for the Commonwealth of Kentucky, various colleges and universities across the region, and municipalities. Her more recent project design experience includes the Elizabethtown Sports Park, Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington Convention Center and Town Branch Commons.
Ramona particularly enjoys public park and recreation and open space projects. Public open space projects have the greatest potential to reach the greatest number of people and enhance quality of public life in an open and equitable manner. They also often have tight budgets, many needs and a wide variety of operational concerns. Design for these public spaces must be very creative, well detailed and mindful of maintenance requirements; these are the complex and exciting public projects she most enjoys tackling with a collaborative team.
Following the path of the channelized Town Branch Creek in downtown Lexington, Town Branch Commons is a new multi-modal linear park reinterpreting the native Bluegrass landscape in the urban environment. The design weaves multiple elements, including water and stormwater treatment features, native stone and native plant material to create this contemporary interpretation of the Bluegrass. While presenting a unique opportunity to showcase the native landscape downtown, the urban environment also presents a unique challenge to the design team in thoughtfully selecting and arranging these landscape elements to create a unified space that is functional, educational, beautiful and sustainable.
Ramona’s presentation will present a high-level overview of the design concept, and focus on the selection of materials and details to successfully execute the vision for Town Branch Commons.
Dr. Daniel Herms, The Davey Tree Expert Company
Dan Herms is Vice President of Research and Development for The Davey Tree Expert Company. Prior to joining Davey, Herms was a professor in the Department of Entomology at The Ohio State University from 1997-2017. His research and outreach programs focus on the management of insect pests of trees in forests, urban forests, and ornamental landscapes, including effects of climate change, and was a member of the Ohio State University climate change outreach team. He received his B.S. in Landscape Horticulture from Ohio State University, his M.S. in Horticulture and Entomology from Ohio State University, and his PhD from Michigan State University in Entomology. Prior to joining Ohio State University, he worked at The Dow Gardens in Midland, MI for 13 years where he directed the pest management program. He is a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Dr. Paul Cappiello, Yew Dell Gardens
Dr. Paul Cappiello is currently the Executive Director of Yew Dell Botanical Gardens in Crestwood, KY. Dr. Cappiello is highly regarded as a lecturer, writer, plant collector, teacher, researcher, garden designer and gardener. He is known locally, nationally and internationally for his work on selection, introduction and evaluation of new ornamental plants for the landscape. He and TN nurseryman Don Shadow co-authored the first major
book devoted exclusively to Dogwoods. Among his numerous awards are honors from the International Plant Propagators’ Society, Garden Club of America, American Society
for Horticultural Science and the Kentucky Nursery and Landscape Association. He was named the 2013 recipient of the American Horticultural Society’s Liberty Hyde Bailey Award and in 2015 was honored with the Award of Excellence from National Garden Clubs, Inc.
Julie Beale, Plant Pathology University of Kentucky
Researcher and Diagnostician
Julie Beale is an agricultural research specialist and plant disease diagnostician in the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Kentucky.
Dr. Nicole Ward Gauthier, UK Plant Pathology
Nicole Ward Gauthier holds a faculty appointment in the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Kentucky. She is responsible for outreach and research of diseases of ornamentals, fruit crops, and hemp across the state. As part of her Extension duties, Nicole provides growers with disease management recommendations including the identification, biology, and management of pathological organisms. Her publications range from traditional fact sheets to spray guides and social media updates – all of which are intended to provide growers and other professionals with quick disease management solutions. Dr. Ward Gauthier earned her BS in Horticulture Science and her PhD in Plant Pathology from Louisiana State University. She also owned her own landscape business in Louisiana, in which she installed landscapes, irrigation, low voltage lighting, and water features. She joined the UK College of Agriculture in 2011.
Dr. Daniel Potter, UK Dept. of Entomology
Dr. Daniel Potter is Professor of Entomology at the University of Kentucky. For over 40 years, his research has informed practical management strategies for many pests of urban landscapes, as well as best management practices for reducing adverse side-effects of pesticides. He is a frequent keynote speaker at major trade conferences, and he has taught workshops for landscape professionals all over the world. His industry recognitions include the U.S. Golf Association Green Section Award, the Professional Land Care Network’s Leadership Award, and the American Nursery and Landscape Association’s Distinguished Achievement Award.
Joyce Bender, KY Invasive Plant Council
Joyce Bender managed the state nature preserve system for the Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission for 31 years. She is from Ohio where she received her undergraduate and graduate degrees. She began her career with the Ohio Division of Natural Areas and Preserves in 1980 and worked for The Nature Conservancy in Ohio and Minnesota prior to her arrival in Kentucky in 1986.
Joyce began working on invasive species in 1991 and was a founding member and officer of both the Kentucky and Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Councils. Joyce was recognized for her efforts in protecting and teaching about Kentucky’s natural heritage by the Kentucky Natural History Society, The Kentucky TNC chapter, The National Board of Wild Ones and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Kentucky Environmental Quality Commission and just received the Natural Areas Association’s highest honor for land management, the Carl N. Becker Stewardship Award.
Joyce’s focus in retirement continues to be maintaining high quality examples of Kentucky’s natural areas and engaging the public so that they find the connection that inspires them to value these places and carry on the work to keep them safe.
Gerald Huseman, BASF Corporation
Gerald Huseman is a Senior Sales Specialist II- T&O (Michigan, Indiana & Ohio excluding Northeast Ohio) for BASF. After 31 years of service with BASF, Gerald plans to to retire at the end of this year, and plans to work as a consultant in the industry.
Prior to BASF, he worked for both TruGreen and Farmland Industries Coop Management in Northern Illinois.
Gerald earned his Associate Agribusiness/Mgt degree from Spoon River College, his B.S. in Agribusiness from Western Illinois University, and completed Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University’s Turfgrass Ecology & Management Short Course.
In his free time, Gerald enjoys golf, coaching youth sports, lawn care/landscaping, and cooking.