March 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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FIELD OF THE YEAR 40 SportsTurf | March 2017 DeFeo: More testing for playing surface. I have seen a lot of small portable equipment coming onto the market that will give you instant data on your soil and turfgrass. Traditional methods have been taking physical samples and sending them to a lab. Now technology has evolved to give instant data on site to sports turf managers. I will also be working with a European company that measures fi eld playability. I'm looking forward to putting more quantitative data on how the fi eld is playing. SportsTurf: What's the greatest pleasure you derive from your job? What's the biggest headache? DeFeo: My greatest pleasure in sports turf is working with the local coaches and helping them on their fi elds. Secondly, I have the pleasure of being a part of Murray Cook's traveling grounds crew; I have met many great individuals across the globe. Really no headaches. I truly enjoy what I do. Sometimes extra events are hard, but I try to understand that my job is just one po- sition on the team. It takes an entire front offi ce to be successful. SportsTurf: What's the best piece of turf management advice you have ever received? DeFeo: It's not your fi eld! SportsTurf: Are you yet involved in "sustainable" management practices? If so, what are you doing? DeFeo: I try to be as sustainable as possible. We have our own nursery to replace wear in position spots. With warm- season grasses we can rotate usage within the nursery and grow back what we used during the season. I also have an ET manager and base irrigation run times off of this data. Lastly, we aerate as much as possible to promote healthy turfgrass and less demand on chemicals. SportsTurf: How are using social media at work? DeFeo: Social media has been great to me. When I fi rst started I only new a handful of local turfgrass managers. With social media I am able to connect with people in our industry on a global scale. SportsTurf: How do you see the sports turf manager's job changing in the future? DeFeo: Our industry is always changing, but for the good. Even with sports turf managers' having more responsibilities and events, I see better and better fi elds every year. The bar is constantly being raised and I'm seeing more minor league facilities getting closer to MLB standards. Emily DeFeo, Tazio and Anthony pose with the Cubs' Commissioner's Trophy Anthony with his son Tazio

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