ValleyCrest Water Blogger (5 Posts)
As the scarcity of potable water increases, it is our responsibility to protect and preserve this natural resource through the promotion of best practices in water management. ValleyCrest Takes On: Water Management hosts the ideas, discoveries and insights from water management experts who maintain, design and build the outdoor environments that touch our everyday lives. Innovators within ValleyCrest, the leading landscape services provider, are facing the issues head-on. Learn more as we monitor projects in progress, track industry trends, test irrigation and water treatment technology and share design strategies. Read, discover and take your stance in the conversation!
Alan Harris (75 Posts) Alan Harris is a water management pioneer. With roots in landscape architecture, Alan has worked with irrigation throughout his career experimenting with hydrozones and a variety of high efficiency irrigation systems. Now, over thirty years in the landscape industry, Alan continues to stay apprised of the latest technology even in a sales leadership capacity as our Director of Sales Operations for our landscape maintenance division. In addition to his contributions to this blog, Alan keeps his hand in water management as a regular contributor to Lawn & Landscape Magazine and speaker at WaterSmart Innovations Conference.
Growing up, Alan was protected from the drought that hit his local community due to access to his family water well at which time Alan learned how water distribution can impact supply. A fervent debater, Alan enjoys playing devil’s advocate when discussing topics on water shortages. He gardens and plays tennis in his spare time when he’s not participating in ASLA (American Society of Landscape Architects) or CAI (Community Associations Institute) functions. At home, Alan collects rain to water his garden. Alan on Google+
Kelly Duke (22 Posts) Not many people can say that they have dedicated their life to the landscape industry. Kelly Duke can. His diverse background ranging from maintenance to estimating, to design, along with a passionate commitment to his trade has given Kelly a lifecycle perspective to landscaping. As the leader of the ValleyCrest’s Pre-Construction Services team, he analyzes early conceptual designs to determine whether or not and how they can be built within budget while meeting long-term design and maintenance goals. Many of the projects that come across Kelly’s desk require he examine the cost and savings of baseline water use in comparison to high efficiency alternatives.
In his spare time, Kelly works on home improvement projects that reduce his household water usage and helps interested neighbors make similar upgrades. Kelly is also involved with the Design-Build Institute of America, where he contributes as a thought leader on applications of design-build for achieving project sustainability goals. In addition, Kelly volunteers as an ACE Mentor (Architecture, Construction and Engineering) to high school students in underserved schools to introduce the next generation to career opportunities in the landscape profession.
Eric Santos (5 Posts) Eric Santos has over 17-year of experience in landscape irrigation and has focused on irrigation technology and recycled water retrofits throughout his career. As the Division Leader for Irrigation and Water Management, Eric provides oversight and support of irrigation operations for the maintenance division and leads the division’s rigorous irrigation training program. Eric holds every Irrigation Association Certification in landscape irrigation and serves on the Irrigation Associations Education Foundation’s Board of Trustees and as Vice Chair of the Irrigation Associations Contractor Common Interest Group.
Eric is often found at the lake or beach wake boarding or enjoying other water sporting activities. It is Eric’s belief that a 10% reduction in water usage is simply a matter of being aware and making simple changes.
Melony MontEton (3 Posts) Melony Mont-Eton is a landscape architect with vast experience in the landscape construction industry. She enjoys working through all aspects of a project from design review to cost estimating and construction installation. A LEED Accredited Professional, Melony facilitates the successful design, development, and certification of high-performance green building projects, which requires extensive knowledge of sustainable materials and construction practices.
Melony places a high value on collaborating with all team members and clients so everyone has a clear understanding of the entire process from design through construction. Melony is a member of the USGBC (US Green Building Council) and DBIA (Design-Build Institute of America), and graduated at the top of her class with a degree in Landscape Architecture from Louisiana State University, ranked #1 in the nation in 2011 for its landscape architecture program. She paints and travels and tends her garden in her free time with her husband, who also has a keen interest in the topic with an educational background in hydraulics and hydrology.
Ben Green (5 Posts) Ben Green is our walking encyclopedia for irrigation systems, technology and materials. From basic to complex, Ben has installed irrigation systems of all types for a variety of properties. For almost 10 years now, Ben has developed from a ValleyCrest intern to become our go-to project manager for large complex landscape installations. Ben’s interest lies in the science and technology behind the tools and systems that enable best water management practices.
An avid outdoorsman, Ben spends his free time pursuing wilderness adventures. He also makes himself available to friends and family to consult on irrigation systems, repairs and tricks. Ben is a firm believer that your irrigation system is only as smart as the person who programs and monitors it.
Gregory Ray (9 Posts) What do you call a landscape architect who understands how to design memorable environments that are also constructible and highly functional spaces? The answer is Gregory Ray. Greg recently came to ValleyCrest from the home building industry where he led the landscape program for a major home builder. Prior to earning his degree as a landscape architect, Greg founded a landscape construction company to earn his way through college. With over 30 years of experience, Greg has found his passion in reintroducing an attractive native plant palette in drought prone communities throughout the Southwest and Western regions.
A native to the San Joaquin Valley, Greg learned the value of conserving water at a young age, which has become more important to him over the years as he has watched the valley transform to adopt a form less conducive to runoff capture and more water dependant. Greg is a member of ASLA (American Society of Landscape Architects). In his spare time he consults to cities and public agencies on converting public spaces to native plant material, plays soccer with his kids and enjoys the beauty of the great outdoors.
Dana Seelig (4 Posts) Irrigation design expert, Dana Seelig has studied and experimented with various approaches to irrigation design over his 30+ years in the profession of landscape architecture. In addition to overseeing the design division’s irrigation system design and development, Dana is responsible for frontend project due diligence, design development and production quality control, agency approvals and field observation services. At the leading edge of irrigation design innovation, Dana has tested new approaches that challenge the typical requirement for time-based irrigation calculations.
Dana has been exposed to the landscape business for most of his life. As a child he raised cacti and orchids with his family, a tradition he continues today, and ran a garden shop for 7 years while in high school and college. In his free time, Dana tends to his orchids, plumarias, vegetable garden, fruit trees and compost, or is found off-roading near his mountain cabin. Dana evaluates water usage for the benefit of his clients and his own assets with both the bottom line and plant health in mind. A commonly overlooked fact that Dana likes to share is the importance of evaluating water requirements for both the plants’ needs and varying soil saturation capacity.
Michael Derewenko (1 Post) Hailing from Central Florida Michael Derewenko has been in the irrigation industry since age 15. Beginning his career working for his father’s large commercial landscape company Michael quickly learned the importance of irrigating landscapes efficiently and effectively. With a strong background in pumps, two-wire systems and irrigation design, there is not much in irrigation that Michael hasn’t encountered. Now operating in Southern California as a Regional Irrigation Advisor at ValleyCrest, Michael is applying his vast knowledge of conservation-based products and experience in product development to a region that is in dire need of water resource management.
When Michael isn’t monitoring ValleyCrest’s substantial network of centralized irrigation he enjoys surfing and playing tennis and piano.
Water Management Expert (6 Posts) Managing water use on residential, commercial and institutional properties has never been more important. Our landscape and irrigation industry veterans lead the charge when it comes navigating the nation's water challenges. From smart irrigation to conservation, our water warriors keep up on trends, changing regulations and new technology. Helping clients use water efficiently is our mission.
Richard Restuccia (120 Posts) Richard Restuccia is a water management evangelist. He believes passionately in water efficiency and sees the financial and social benefits far too often to keep a secret. Richard is a spokesperson at industry events and on the Hill to provide direction and insight on landscape water management best practices. Richard puts his words into action through service on various boards and committees. Currently he serves on the Irrigation Association’s Board of Directors. As a board member, Richard serves in a variety of capacities, including government/public affairs. He is the liaison between the board and its marketing committee on the best ways to promote water efficiency and educate industry professionals on new technologies, products and services. Richard is also a regular contributor to Lawn & Landscape Magazine.
With over 15 years of focus on landscape water management solutions, Richard has experience on both the supplier and maintenance sides of the business. He has a great interest in the supply of clean water for people in developing countries and as an outdoorsman, spends his free time running, swimming and surfing. Richard has a Masters of Science in Agribusiness Management from Arizona State University.
Richard on Google+
Martha Golea (36 Posts) A seasoned communicator and passionate water conservationist, Martha Golea tracks projects in progress and reports on usage of new and exploratory irrigation technology and water management strategies. Martha also regularly contributes content on water management and conservation to Lawn & Landscape Magazine.
Martha’s commitment to water conservation was first sparked with the idea of capturing water from a leaky faucet to flush her toilet in her college apartment. She has also lived in a home that was 100% desert landscaped in Phoenix and she still found ways to use water from leaky fixtures. An artist, localvore and cyclist, Martha spends her free time exploring Chapel Hill, the city she now calls home.Martha on Google+