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Professional Grounds Management Society Recognizes UCM with Honor Award

By Jeff Murphy, November 9, 2020

UCM Campus Grounds

WARRENSBURG, MO – A tribute to the efforts of those who contribute to the University of Central Missouri’s beautiful campus, the Professional Grounds Management Society® (PGMS®) has named UCM recipient of an Honor Award in the society’s 2020 Green Star Awards® Competition. The award was announced in the University and College Grounds (Large 500+ Acres) category for exceptional grounds maintenance during the society’s 2020 Virtual Awards Competition in October.


The Green Star Awards® program brings national recognition to grounds maintained with a high degree of excellence, complementing other national landscape award programs that recognize outstanding landscape design and construction. In this year’s competition, PGMS® presented three Grand Awards, its highest honor, as well as 14 Honor Awards and three Merit Awards in eight categories of competition.


According to the PGMS® website, the Grand, Merit and Honor Awards cover all types of private, public, commercial and industrial landscapes. To qualify for entry, a landscape must be at least two years old and under an organization’s continuous maintenance for at least two years.


Awards were presented as part of the 2020 PGMS® School of Grounds Management, which was scheduled to take place during the GIE+EXPO in Louisville, Kentucky.

The goals of the Green Star Awards® program include:

  • Bringing national attention to grounds manicured with a high degree of excellence;
  • Recognition for individual professional efforts leading to high maintenance standards and high-quality appearance of the landscape;
  • Challenging those who are responsible for grounds maintenance nationwide to achieve a higher level of excellence, and to help PGMS® extend its mission in promoting well-maintained landscapes throughout the United States.

Entries were judged on the basis of a PowerPoint that was submitted by each organization participating in the awards program. This process included before and after photographs demonstrating how different grounds maintenance and landscaping were handled. A “Grounds Program Summary” also was submitted focusing on how the grounds department allocates resources to accomplish established goals. Judges considered how grounds maintenance crews handled issues such as holiday decorating, pest control, sustainability, landscape enhancements, seasonal plantings, snow and leaf removal, irrigation repair and maintenance, sports field support, fountain repair and maintenance, and much more.


UCM also was recognized by PGMS® in 2016, 2017, and 2018. The grounds department, which contributed to this recognition, is part of UCM’s Facilities Planning and Operations Division, and includes nine full-time and three student employees. According to Kevin Courtwright, grounds supervisor, these employees provide support for a 634-acre main core campus comprising turf, seasonal planting beds, parking lots, and sidewalks, in addition to 937 acres that encompass Skyhaven Airport, the University Farm and a four-field shooting range.


About the Professional Grounds Management Society
Serving the profession for over 100 years, PGMS® is an individual membership society of grounds professionals dedicated to advancing the grounds management profession through education and professional development. Further information on PGMS® is available online at


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