Football Groundsman and Pitchcare founder Dave Saltman has been awarded the 2007 Professional Excellence on a Global Scale Award by The Ohio State University.
Each year, a panel comprising of Pam Sherratt, Dr. Karl Dannenberger and Dr. John Street from The Ohio State Turfgrass Programme selects the sports turf professional or educator they feel has made a huge contribution to sports turf - not just in their own country but on a global scale.
Pam Sherratt said the award is richly deserved: "This is a global award because we know that sports turf is a global industry and many of the true pioneers are from outside the USA. We are trying to acknowledge the true leaders in sports turf who are bettering the industry by making it more professional and more respected- not just in their own country, but Worldwide.
The work Dave has accomplished with Pitchcare has been phenomenal. It personifies everything we wanted this award to recognise and he's done it because he has a genuine desire for our industry to be respected by our clientele and because of his determination to help everyone in the industry who needs advice. The award is not just for the services he has provided for groundsmen and greenkeepers, but for drawing attention to the industry and raising awareness of just what it is we do."
Dave began his career as a landscape gardener and designer and built award-winning gardens at the Chelsea Flower Show before being asked to relay the turf at Queens Park Rangers' Loftus Road ground in 1988. Since then, he's been involved in the construction, renovation and maintenance of all grass sports surfaces, including many Premier, league and non-league winter sports grounds in the UK. A former football 'Groundsman of the Year' and lecturer for the Football Association, Dave launched Pitchcare.com, an online magazine for groundsmen and greenkeepers in 2001.
During the last three years, he's also been Head Groundsman then Project Manager at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales and currently holds a similar position at Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club.
Today, Pitchcare has more than 26,000 members in 112 countries and its team of 10 staff provides the industry with a constantly updated interactive website, the bi-monthly Pitchcare magazine, a comprehensive online store and an extensive range of training courses.
Dave will receive his award when he speaks at The Ohio Turfgrass Programme Conference & Show in December.
Previous winners have been Martyn Jones from the National Turfgrass Foundation in 2005 and Mike O'Keeffe from the Ohio State International Internship Programme in 2006.