FORT MYERS, Fla. (May 25, 2010) — Steven Morton, Landscape Manager for Shell Point Retirement Community, recently became one of only 127 grounds management professionals in the nation to successfully complete the Certified Grounds Manager (CGM) program offered through The Professional Grounds Management Society (PGMS). Morton has been with Shell Point since 2005, and in addition to this recent certification, he is a Certified Horticultural Professional, Certified Landscape Inspector, Certified Arborist, and has a license in Pesticide Application for Lawns and Ornamental Plants issued by the State of Florida. 
The property at Shell Point Retirement Community is comprised of more than 500 acres and Morton is responsible for of all the landscaping outside of the golf course.  He oversees 17 employees in his department, as well as five contract turf-care contractors, and watches over a range of horticultural plants from palms to orchids.

“I try to encourage my employees to seek greater horticultural knowledge through industry associations,” said Morton.  “In the last five years, members of my team have achieved 16 separate certifications from various organizations representing different aspects of horticultural disciplines. The outcome of the Shell Point Landscape Management Team’s increased level of knowledge has resulted in improved beautification in our landscaping; enhanced technical expertise; improved communication; and formal recognition of our department within the organization.”

Morton earned a B.S. degree in Agriculture with an emphasis on Horticulture from the University of Missouri, Columbia.  The Professional Grounds Management Society (PGMS) awarded his team at Shell Point with “The Green Star Award” for excellence in landscaping.

Founded in 1911, PGMS is a nationally known individual membership society of grounds professionals dedicated to advancing the grounds management profession through education and professional development. Further information on PGMS and its CCM program is available online at  To achieve the CGM professional designation, an individual must first have accomplished a certain level of education and on-the-job experience.  Then they must successfully complete a two-part examination process administered by PGMS.

Shell Point Retirement Community is a not-for-profit continuing care retirement community located in Fort Myers just off Summerlin Road, two miles before the Sanibel causeway. Shell Point has received national accreditation from CARF-CCAC, and is a nationally recognized leader in the retirement industry.  The community offers retirement living in a resort-style environment with an 18-hole championship golf course which is open to the public, as well as recreational/fitness facilities and deep water boating access for its residents.  To learn more about Shell Point, visit us at or call 1-800-780-1131.



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