David J. Frank

ASCA Update - In Memoriam

The ASCA remembers a true industry leader.

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May 1, 2019

It’s with great sadness that I must report David J. Frank, the founder of Wisconsin’s largest landscape company and a true industry leader, has passed away. His nephew, Brad Frank, reached out to me on a late-February Sunday morning with the news, and according to Brad, David’s health had taken a turn for the worst and he passed away early the day before.

I knew of David for many years prior to the creation of the ASCA, but it was his immediate involvement and active participation in our emerging association that allowed me to really get to know the man. David was one of the driving forces that helped shape the mission of this fledgling association. He always seemed to find the time to take questions, listen to ideas and provide counsel, and the energy he brought to the group helped fuel its forward progress.

What I will remember most fondly about David is his passion for service and his commitment to this industry. He showed up early and prepared to every committee meeting with big ideas and an equal amount of determination to see them through. He instilled in us a “never-say-die” attitude that guided us through some initial rough spots and will undoubtedly continue to encourage and inspire us for years to come.

David was a member of the inaugural class of Leadership Award recipients in 2010. I encourage you to read the Snow Magazine profile story (Seeing The Big Picture, bit.ly/2RUBpeU) to gain a deeper perspective on what it means to be a leader.

However, what I’ll remember best about David – and even at this moment makes me smile – is how happy he was to be among his peers at our annual Executive Summit. I would catch a glimpse of him skillfully making his way through a crowded networking reception, seeking out a wide-eyed new face and with a welcoming grin and a firm handshake exclaim: “Hi, I’m David J. Frank … It’s nice to meet you.”

Kevin Gilbride is the ASCA’s Executive Director.