New BALI board member David Dodd to focus on landscape skills shortage

Award-winning landscape contractor David Dodd will help promote landscaping in schools and colleges following his election to BALI's board of directors last month.

David Dodd addresses members at the BALI AGM. Image: Supplied

The vote took place at BALI's national AGM on 9 September, and included proxy votes from those eligible members who were unable to attend.

The Outdoor Room, which Dodd founded in 1995, has been a BALI Registered Contractor since 2004 and has won numerous BALI National Landscape Awards in addition to a host of RHS medals. Every year the company builds prestigious show gardens at the RHS Chelsea, Hampton Court and Tatton Park Flower Shows and Dodd has pushed for recognition for the expertise of the contractors who build show gardens, when the media focus has been almost entirely on the gardens' designers.

Dodd started his career as an apprentice gardener and attended Merrist Wood College in Surrey where he obtained the National Diploma in Landscape Design and Construction. He still lectures at the college on landscape courses. He is passionate about bringing young people into the industry and promoting landscaping as a profession and serious career choice with real prospects for those with the right attitude, aptitude and skills.

He has always played an active role in promoting BALI and has served as both a regional committee member and Chairman of BALI's South Thames Region. Joining the board of directors will enable him to work with board colleagues to push forward the association's strategic plan, particularly in campaigns targeted at schools and colleges to help address the marked skills gap in the industry.

BALI national chairman Bob Field said: "David is a colourful character with a wealth of practical and technical expertise. He's also a great communicator who is very well known and respected across the industry. I am particularly excited about the potential for the association's schools and colleges outreach programme now that David has joined the board. Working alongside board director Nigel Bowcock, David will be an enormous asset in getting this initiative off to a tremendous start."

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