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UNF horticulturalist receives FNGLA Outstanding Educator of the Year Award

Rhonda Gracie standing next to a bush of blooming rosesRhonda Gracie, horticulturalist and landscape designer at the University of North Florida, was selected as the 2022 recipient of the Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association (FNGLA) Outstanding Educator of the Year Award.

Gracie has helped with the implementation of nine Florida-friendly gold-level certified gardens, UNF’s Bee Campus USA designation, and 26 transformational educational garden exhibits. She has won 11 awards and certifications, including UNF Duval County School Employer Partner of the Year.

Along with being a member of numerous professional boards and committees, Gracie has taken part in 18 interagency/departmental collaborations, and conducted 104 educational classes, workshops and tours, serving 2,661 students and educators. She has managed an average of 1,920 volunteer on-the-job training service hours for Alden Road Exceptional Learning Centers CBVE and Project Search programs, with a total of 6,817 service hours by volunteers who receive an educational component from all volunteer work.

FNGLA's Outstanding Educator Industry Award is presented annually to an individual actively involved with teaching horticulture. Out of a field of 17 other candidates, Gracie won the award for the diversity of her classes, workshops and educational tours with continuing education unit credits that separated her from traditional educators. She was also recognized for having been active in various FNGLA advocacy and leadership roles since 2000.

Gracie will be recognized and honored at FNGLA's Annual Meeting held at FNGLA's Annual Convention in June. Learn more about the Outstanding Educator Award at the FNGLA website.