One of the highlights of the STMA Conference & Exhibition, as far as educational sessions, was “Sports Turf Management: Past, Present, and Future,” presented by Bob Campbell, CSFM, the former head groundskeeper at the University of Tennessee’s Neyland Stadium.

Campbell, in his unique, engaging and entertaining way, looked back at people, innovations and events that helped shaped and mold the industry into what it is today. He also discussed opportunities and obligations field managers have to be “builders of dreams and memories.”

“Our business is a fun business,” Campbell reminded the audience. “People come to where we work every day to have fun. We need to remember that.”

Campbell also spoke about recent industry trends, like the movement to synthetic turf.

“Regardless of what kind of surface you manage, our profession is changing,” he said.Campbell, a past STMA president, industry icon and longtime fixture on the sidelines at Volunteer football games, reported that he’s enjoying his retirement in Alabama. He spends all the time he can with his grandson, Jack.

He closed his presentation with a picture of himself and Jack walking together on a ballfield. “This is the closest I get to sports fields nowadays!” he said.