AIFD Honors Three Professionals with Awards

Three 2019 recipients were recognized on July 9 during the Institute’s Awards & Induction Ceremony held in conjunction with the National Symposium “Awaken” in Las Vegas, NV.

Award of Distinguished Service to AIFD
Sharon S. McGukin AIFD, CFD, AAF, PFCI

Sharon McGukin AIFD has been recognized with the Award of Distinguished Service to AIFD. This award is given to longstanding members of the American Institute of Floral Designers in grateful recognition of extraordinary service to the Institute, upholding its goals and supporting its activities. Recipients shall be known as ‘Fellows of AIFD’ and are granted Life Membership.

Sharon has been an active member of AIFD serving on both the national and regional levels. She embodies the professional spirit that shines a positive light on the flower industry and AIFD. She is known for having a friendly, open style of sharing her knowledge of trends, techniques and marketing that is appreciated by colleagues and students alike. She is a Past President of the National Board.


Award of Design Influence
Matt Wood AIFD, CFD

Matt Wood AIFD has been recognized posthumously with the Award of Design Influence. This award is presented to AIFD members who are floral design visionaries whose creative body of work has national influence and constitutes a legacy of innovation. The award was accepted by Ralph Null AIFD on behalf of Matt Wood’s family.

Matt was the “Guru of Permanent Botanicals,” artistically creating permanent flowers that were beyond perfect. He promoted quality flowers and creative floral design to the industry, as well as the consumer. He was known to say that appropriate placement was always his “key” to the natural and artistic designs used by many designers today. He was committed to bringing permanent botanicals to an artistic level and could breathe life into each and every branch and blossom.

Award of Merit – Industry
Gretchen Sell

Gretchen Sell of DESIGN MASTER color tool, inc. has been recognized with the Award of Merit – Industry. This is an award that is presented to professionals in the floral industry who are not a member of AIFD, but who are serving a crucial role in advancing the industry.

Gretchen wears many hats for Design Master as she shifts from the technology and complexity of Spray color chemistry formulations and regulatory complexities to the creative nuances of color. She actively participates in the Color Marketing Group and produces all of Design Master’s promotional pieces.  She continually promotes the privilege of working with color and her willingness to share and educate knows no limits.


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