WF&FSA Brings Aboard New Leadership, Gabriel Becerra Elected President
By Jason Vaughan, WF&FSA Communications Manager
The Wholesale Florist and Florist Supplier Association (WF&FSA) recently elected new leadership to help guide the 95-year-old organization. Gabriel Becerra, president of Miami-based Golden Flowers, will serve as the 2021-2022 WF&FSA President. Becerra accepted the gavel from immediate past president Tim Dewey on June 9 at the Association’s member business meeting.
“There is no doubt that we are living in a special moment. Now is the time to think about the future,” Becerra said in his opening remarks. “We have confirmed that what we do and what we offer every day is very relevant… We have seen all the challenges. We have overcome as we accomplish our purpose and mission as an industry.”
Becerra — no stranger to WF&FSA and its annual Floral Distribution Conference — is known for his colorful “Helping People Express Feelings with Flowers” button.
“I want to call on all the members of the association to be ambassadors of the flower movement,” Becerra said. — from the growers to the importers, wholesalers, florists, event planners, retailers… to show the world what we do, to share the beautiful stories of our industry members, and to simply promote the wonderful features and benefits flowers have.”
Attendees also unanimously approved the addition of five candidates to the board: Patrick Busch of Len Busch Roses (who will also serve on the Executive Committee), Karen Oie of Smithers-Oasis, Eric Fernandez of Continental Flowers, Scott Cheeseman of Kennicott, and Alice Givens of Carlstedt’s.
The association also took time during the meeting to thank outgoing board members Jeff Stoppenhagen (Gassafy Wholesale), Jason Lenz (Len Busch Roses), and Wendy Fowle (Staalduinen Floral) for their service to the association and its members. Additionally, two Executive Committee members terms also ended, Dave Legge (DWF Wholesale Florists) as treasurer, and Ben Powell (Mayesh) as immediate past president.
The WF&FSA member business meeting was held during the last day of the 2021 Floral Distribution Conference. Almost 500 attendees gathered at Miami’s Doral resort to display products, engage in educational programming, and reconnect for the first time since the last in-person conference held in November 2019. The three-day conference was considered the nation’s first post-pandemic floral event.