Mary Fisher

Lessons in Leadership in the City of Brotherly Love

By Mary Fisher, APLD

Mary Fisher

Mary Fisher
APLD CA Chapter Sponsorship Chair/President Elect

After all my years of active involvement with APLD, who would have thought it would take a whirlwind trip to Philadelphia to bring focus to why I keep saying “yes” when asked to step up and volunteer? 

Amelia Lima and I attended the March 2nd APLD Leadership Conference as the two representatives of the California Chapter. There was, of course, the usual presenting of current issues and upcoming changes to the organization.

But the meat of this meeting was a presentation by Dan Maffei, who many of you may remember as the past organizer of our annual conferences. His talk, called “Why I Became a Leader and Why You’re Next”, really opened my eyes and gave me a sense of direction and confidence as I move from sponsorship chair to Chapter president next year.

I learned that I’m not the only one who often feels unprepared to take on the task I am asked to do. In spite of that, it is the opportunity to personally achieve something, to make a difference, and to inspire others to do the same, that keeps me involved with APLD after all this time.

I realize now that this has changed my life in so many ways and has helped me elevate my business immeasurably. This is what it is all about…why I stay a member of this organization and why I choose volunteer time to keep it running.

Beyond the lessons in leadership, a little playing in the snow, and a quick trip to the Philadelphia Flower & Garden Show, I also came back with a renewed sense that APLD is really on the right path, thinking of the future, and making bold structural changes that will make us much stronger in the long run.

You will be hearing more in the next year about these changes in membership, advocacy, and certification. My sense is that we are heading in the right direction by raising the standards for our members and the profession of landscape design as a whole.