This award was created to recognize a Teleflora member florist who best embodies the legacy of Tom Butler, who passed away in August 2014 after a battle with cancer. The award recognizes a retail florist and Teleflora member that, in addition to running a first class retail operation, shows the highest level of commitment and service to their local community, is a dedicated ambassador to the floral industry, and provides leadership and guidance to fellow florists.
“Tom had a true love for this industry and we want to honor him by recognizing others with a similar passion,” said Jeff Bennett, president of Teleflora. “People who, like Tom, are committed to and provide leadership in the floral industry.”
Butler, who served as the chairman of Teleflora since 1995 was past Chairman of the American Floral Endowment and a longtime devoted advocate for the Endowment, beginning his service as a trustee in 2006. Known for possessing an unparalleled knack for fundraising and for his significant interest in expanding and improving the Endowment, Butler’s commitment to giving and innovation continues within the floral industry through the Tom Butler Family Fund that helps provide funds to support the American Floral Endowment’s research and grant efforts. Among his many roles and accomplishments, Tom served as the chair of the AFE Development Committee and a Trustee on the AFE Board.
For many who knew Tom, he was considered to be the ‘Chief Champion of Florists’ – always there when they needed him, always understanding their issues and concerns, and always representing their cause.
The following companies considered for the award are:
Beneva Flowers in Sarasota, Florida
Phillips Flowers & Gifts in Westmont, Illinois
McCarthy Flowers in Scranton, Pennsylvania
Cosentino’s Florist in Auburn, New York
Tiger Lily Florist in Charleston, South Carolina
Shirley’s Flowers & Gifts in Rogers, Arkansas
Freytag’s Florist in Austin, Texas
Gustaf’s Greenery in Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Elaine’s Flower Shoppe in Depew, New York
Wise Originals in Aston, Pennsylvania
Maher’s Florist in Pasadena, Maryland
Artistic Florist in Amelia Island, Florida
Bloomtown Florist in Largo, Florida
Boise At Its Best Flowers in Boise, Idaho
Dandelions Flowers and Gifts in Eugene, Oregon
Norton’s Flowers and Gifts in Ypsilanti, Michigan
Wasserman’s Flower Shop in Muskegon, Michigan
Blumz by … JRDesigns in Detroit
The winner will be announced at the upcoming American Floral Endowment Dinner, September 10, held during SAF Amelia Island 2015, in Amelia Island, Florida. Tom Butler’s family will also be present at the event.