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Syngenta champions women in golf with special roundtable

To celebrate Women’s Golf Month this June, Syngenta talked to five inspirational women in turfgrass management about their careers, advice and more. These roundtable participants are just a few of the many female employees Syngenta is proud to have on its industry-leading team:
  • Melissa Barron, territory manager in Orlando, Florida - @TURFmelb
  • Lisa Beirn, research and development field scientist in Washington, New Jersey - @iamthelabrat
  • Lee Bloomcamp, territory manager in Gainesville, Florida - @LBloomcamp
  • Kimberly Gard, territory manager in San Diego, California - @GardKimberly
  • Melissa Gugliotti, territory manager in Wells, Maine - @MelGoog
Lisa Beirn, @iamthelabrat

Q: How did you begin your career in the golf industry?

Beirn: My career in turf didn’t begin until I was an undergraduate at Rutgers University. I was unsure of what I wanted to do “when I grew up,” but that changed when I took a position as a research assistant in the Plant Diagnostic Laboratory. I became fascinated by the field, and the rest is history.
Gugliotti: I came to Syngenta as an aquatics sales representative, helping lake and pond managers looking for solutions for weeds and algae. With a great portfolio and the opportunity to stay a little closer to home, I never looked back.
Gard: I dabbled in a little bit of turf diagnostics while working for one of the Syngenta legacy companies, but it was a small portion of my job at the time. I ended up being fascinated by the science and agronomics of turf, whether it was insects, diseases or weeds. 

Melissa Barron, @TURFmel
Q: Why did you fall in love with the industry?
I absolutely love the superintendents I get to work with, and I enjoy seeing how much work and effort they put into their courses. I am so impressed by how kind and hardworking they all are.
Bloomcamp: It combined my love of the outdoors with scientific knowledge, to help make golf courses and their surroundings a more beautiful and enjoyable place for golfers.
Gugliotti: My father is an avid golfer, and I grew up riding with him on his cart when he went out to play a few holes. The warm summer sunsets, being surrounded by nature and spending time with my dad on the course are some of my most lasting memories.
Kimberly Gard, @GardKimberly

Q: How has the industry evolved since you began your career?
 Barron: I came into the golf side of the industry at the height of the 2008 economic downturn, so I saw many courses struggle to stay afloat and maintain business. Luckily, I have seen so many positive changes since then, and it seems like the courses are making a turn for the better these days. 
Gard: There has been a lot of innovation. Many new products have been registered, and there’s pressure to bring new chemistries to the market faster than ever before.
Beirn: Technological advancements in the past few years have been dramatic. Remote monitoring systems and drones are some examples, but there have also been developments in DNA-based applications. I wouldn’t be surprised if one day we are sequencing entire golf courses, similar to how we are sequencing humans to learn about ancestry and diseases.
Lee Bloomcamp, @LBloomcamp

Q: Condition. Perform. Recover. is about healthy turf and a healthy you. What do you do to Condition. Perform. Recover. yourself? 

Bloomcamp: Lots of yard work, yoga, horseback riding and canoeing. North Florida is a great place to be active year-round.
 Gard: I’m trying to get all my steps in every day, especially when I’m competing with a team of coworkers. You don’t want to let anyone else on your team down. I better get off the couch!
Barron: One of my passions is yoga. I have consistently practiced for more than a decade, and I teach multiple classes in Orlando every week. Yoga has conditioned my body and, more importantly, has helped me perform mentally in all of the work and life challenges that I face. 

Melissa Gugliotti, @MelGoog
Q: What advice would you give to a woman interested in pursuing a career in the golf industry?
Beirn: Seek out great mentors. I was and am still surrounded by wonderful individuals who always encouraged and supported me along the way. 
Barron: I highly encourage women to pursue a career in the golf industry! Everyone treats me with respect and professionalism as a female, and I believe any woman can have the same experience if she knows her worth and believes in herself.
Gugliotti: Just be yourself, and know your stuff better than anyone else.

For more information about maintaining your best self and your best turf, visit www.ConditionPerformRecover.com

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