February 2017

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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10 SportsTurf | February 2017 FIELD SCIENCE always a boss first, but also was always a friend when you needed one. Her approach to dealing with coaches, administrators, and co-workers while still creating world-class playing surfaces is something I have always tried to imitate. Mike Andresen, CSFM, is not only my current supervisor, but also a man that I go to often for many things. The way he thinks through everything in life has taught me much. Many times what he says is so far from what I was thinking I am surprised and in awe of the wisdom he has to offer. ST: What's your philosophy on hiring and training in your current position? Van Loo: My current staff is all students. I try and find students that I think have the passion to be field managers someday. I try to also find students that aren't afraid to work. The training aspect is something I am still figuring out. The students have such a difference in experience when they get here, I have to almost start at different points with each student. A lot of the time I let the more experienced students train the new students. My goal with all my students is that they are prepared to be a turf manager when they leave here. I try and put all of them in a position to lead before they leave. It's the only way they learn how to lead in their own way, making mistakes while they are here. Allowing mistakes to happen is important in learning how to do it right the next time. I also don't hide anything; if they have a question I try and answer it. I try and also learn from them, this might be the most difficult thing for me. Accepting new and better ways to do something that we have been doing for years a different way, sometimes the "old dog" doesn't want to change. ST: What are your current job responsibilities and how do you approach both on-the-field issues as well as off-the-field ones? Van Loo: My current responsibilities are Jack Trice Stadium, three and a half practice grass football fields, softball, practice soccer, track and field throws Game day at Iowa State's Jack Trice Stadium. " I have really enjoyed working with Tim as he has ascended through the various board positions to the office of the President. When he first joined the board, I contacted Mike Andresen, CSFM, who was actually on the Board when I was first hired. I told Mike that he really has mentored Tim well and that Tim is always so well prepared and has a calm leadership style. Mike let me know that he came that way to Iowa State, no mentoring required! I know that 1-year terms for Presidents can be challenging. However, each President lays such good groundwork for the next that it really is a seamless transition from my perspective. Jeff has done an excellent job prepping Tim, and I know Tim will be successful in leading STMA through 2017, and beyond. " — Kim Heck, CAE, CEO, STMA

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