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“The people at Tom Irwin are very passionate
about what they're doing.”
—Chris McGinty, Superintendent of Maintenance at Town of Framingham
For more than 20 years, Chris McGinty has managed 297 acres of soccer, baseball, football, lacrosse, and field hockey fields for Framingham State College, Massachusetts Bay Community College, Framingham High School, Marion High School and Keefe Technical School. He supervises 12 permanent and 18 seasonal employees.
(Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff)
Chris is a busy man with five major teams using his fields at any given time, in addition to junior varsity programs, sophomore, and freshmen teams at the three high schools. With so many teams inflicting wear and tear on his fields, Chris is constantly striving to minimize traffic damage. At the same time, he must be accountable for keeping costs under control.
“I have to account every year for why we are spending $45,000 to $55,000,” said Chris: “I have to justify it in a letter to the purchasing agent, explaining where the money goes.” Inevitably, someone asks why they can't just buy their fertilizer from Home Depot. Chris counts on Tom Irwin to supply him with the scientific data to show why their program works – and why it's money well spent.
Chris had been a turf manager for a decade when he encountered a particularly challenging problem with one of his fields. “I had some serious problem with an area and I was looking for advice. I met Chris Petersen of Tom Irwin through Bobby O’Brien from Boston College. He said, 'Call this guy, he can help you out.'
“Chris personally came out and met up with me,” said McGinty. “He said, 'Well, we can do this, this and this. He suggested starting out slowly and seeing how it worked. And I did and it worked. Right away, I found Chris to be very reliable source of information and very up front and honest. That’s one thing I can say about Tom Irwin – I've never had a problem when it comes to integrity or honesty with Tom Irwin’s people.”
That relationship continues today with Chris' representative from Tom Irwin, Brian Luccini.
“Brian has worked very well with me – providing solutions to problems, asking what my goals are, suggesting different products,” said McGinty. “I've also learned a lot from the speakers Tom Irwin has brought in for their Soil Academy. I don’t see Lesco doing that, I don’t see Scott’s doing that. The people at Tom Irwin are very passionate about what they're doing.”