Officers of the Southern Nursery Association (SNA) who will serve for the 2015 – 2016 term were elected during the 117th annual meeting held at the Georgia International Convention Center in Atlanta, Ga., during SNA 2015. The election, open to all active SNA members, determines representation from the four geographic regions of the association:

Chapter 1 – Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia

Chapter 2 – Florida, Georgia and South Carolina

Chapter 3 – Arkansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Oklahoma and Tennessee

Chapter 4 – Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas

Michael Hobbs, Warren County Nursery, McMinnville, Tn., was elected president succeeding Richard May, May Nursery, Havana, FL.

The complete slate of 2014-2015 officers is as follows:

Michael Hobbs, President, Warren County Nursery, McMinnville, TN

Dusty Knight, Vice President/Treasurer/Director Chapter 4, Plantation Tree Company, Selma, AL

Norman Cole, III, Director Chapter 1, Cole Nurseries, Pipestem, WV

Joseph Napoli, Director Chapter 2, Athens Wholesale Nursery, Athens, GA

Rickey Minton, Director Chapter 3, Triangle Nursery, McMinnville, TN

Richard May, Immediate Past President, May Nursery, Havana, FL

Newly elected SNA President Michael Hobbs is President of Warren County Nursery, McMinnville, TN. A third generation nurseryman, Michael has been active in the industry for more than 40 years. Founded by his father and mother, Leslie and Frances Hobbs, in 1950, Warren County Nursery is a wholesale field growing operation and greenhouses for liner production offering a complete line of bareroot seedlings, cuttings, liners, vines, wildflowers, fruit and nut trees, balled & burlap shrubs, shade trees, ornamentals and evergreens. Warren County Nursery has over 400 acres in production and over the past sixty years has become recognized as a supplier of native plants used in wetlands and reforestation plantings.

Hobbs has served on the Tennessee Nursery & Landscape Association Board of Directors and served as president in 1979 and 1990. He was awarded the Tennessee Nursery & Landscape Association Wholesale Nurseryman of the Year in 1990. He received SNA’s David E. Laird, Sr. Memorial Award in 1980, and served on the SNA Trade Show Committee in 2005. Hobbs has also served on the Horticultural Research Institute’s Board as well as many other industry committees.

Locally he has received the Jaycees Distinguished Service Award (1980) and served as McMinnville Jaycees President (1982).

The new industry leader joining the SNA Board this year is Rickey D. Minton, Owner of Triangle Nursery, McMinnville, TN. His other business interests include Principal Partner in Litewire Data, LLC, and Owner of Red Road Business Park.

Rickey received his BS in Agriculture at Tennessee Tech University and MA in Divinity from Liberty University. He served as president of the Middle Tennessee Nursery Association (1988) and president of the Tennessee Nursery & Landscape Association (1991).  He received the Tennessee Young Farmer Award in 1992 and in that same year he received SNA’s David E. Laird, Sr. Memorial Award.  Minton has also served as the AAN Governor for Tennessee (1994) and the SNA Trade Show Chairman (1994). He is a Founding Member of the Tennessee Urban Forestry Council (1989).

On the local level, is served as McMinnville City Councilman (1998-2002), was named Tennessee Jaycee Man of Year (2000), and is a McMinnville Rotary Club International Service Director. Rickey is a minister and missionary to Haiti and Africa, a prison ministry leader, and director of Lighthouse Men’s Shelter.

Rickey is married to Greta Porter Minton. They have two sons and daughter-in-laws, Zachary and Kati, and Wesley and Victoria, and one grandson Lake.

“The SNA membership recently voted in a strong group of industry leaders to guide the association through this time of resurgence, said Karen Summers, SNA Executive Vice President. “This 2015-2016 board represents a group of individuals with a broad variety of perspectives and experience that can be leveraged to our advantage as we work to rebuild our membership base and the SNA Regional Marketplace. With the guidance of these knowledgeable leaders I am very confident we will emerge stronger and better. As a regional association we are very fortunate to be able look around the region for strong leadership that has served their state associations well and put those talents to work for association and the industry,” she added.