Burks, who manages Sanders Garden World in Somerset and is the regional manager for four South West-based garden centres, will help boost awareness of the organisation.
Burks said: "I am delighted to have been appointed as GCA Chairman and I am looking forward to helping spread the word of the GCA and promoting its work.
"Ensuring customer satisfaction is a vital aspect of GCA activity. The GCA’s new slogan for 2012 is ‘Better standards, better business’ and this will be the theme for my year in tenure.
"I would like to help drive membership and ensure current members receive the best service possible for the industry organisation.
"I will be helping to plan some of the organisations events in 2012 and my first role will be to help organise and run the annual GCA Conference, which takes place from January 23 until 25 in Oxfordshire."Gillie Westwood, Chief Executive at the GCA, said: "I would like to congratulate Peter on his new position and wish him all the best with his work for the GCA in 2012 and 2013.