2023 Design Presenters

Renowned Florists, Award-Winning Designers and Television Superstars.

Learn more about the star-studded roster of design presenters who will be sharing their knowledge & experience with you at the GLFEE.

Ace Berry


Ace Berry, AIFD, PFCI, TMF

Ace Berry, AIFD, is one of the most recognizable faces in today’s floral design field, especially when his beard is adorned with flowers. Behind the spotlight that has brought Ace to the forefront as a runner-up in HBOmax’s Full Bloom is a humble and creative genius. With a signature for vibrant colors and uplifting passion, Ace Berry was once working in the oil fields in Texas before finding his true passion—flowers. Since then, he has been inducted into the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD), earned his accreditation to Professional Floral Communicators International (PFCI), and received his Texas Master Florist (TMF).

He is part of the Inspired Design Retreat Team with good friend and colleague Patience Pickner, AIFD, and was named Floral Designer of the Year in Houston in 2017. Named Texas Designer of the Year in 2019, he is also a certified judge and valuator. He brings a renewed energy to the field and has a pay it forward mentality in his design work.

Doug Bates


Doug Bates AIFD, CF

Owner and lead designer for Designs By Vogt’s in Sturgis, MI, Doug has received numerous awards in the floral industry, including the Michigan Designer of the Year 2012, Young Person of the Year 2013 and as this years (2021) Design Academy winner.

Doug was inducted into The American Institute of Floral De- signers (AIFD) in 2015 and is often seen volunteering his time and talents at AIFD’s annual Symposium. Doug enjoys sharing his experience and talents in work- shops and stage presentations for local and regional floral events.

Jackie Lacey


Jackie Lacey AAF, AIFD, PFCI, CFD

Jackie Lacey has over 35 years of experience. His portfolio includes an extensive background in the retail floral market and wedding/event design experience.

His current position as Director of Education and Industry Relations with Floriology, BloomNet and Napco and Senior Design Team Specialist and Senior Editor for Floriology Magazine keep him on top of market trends, current design trends, industry education and retail marketing. Jackie has won numerous awards in floral design competitions in multi state, national and local floral associations. National Television exposure includes designing and participation for WE TV programs “Platinum Weddings” and “I Do Over” as a Celebrations.Com Floral Expert. Previous work for celebrities such as Drew Barrymore, Sandra Bullock, Meryl Streep, Diane Lane, Cheryl Ladd, Cindy Crawford and Richard Gere, Matthew McConaughey and Leonardo DiCaprio have come through participation with floral design on several major motion pictures. Continuing education through numerous stage presentations for multi–state Associations and national industry leaders allow Jackie to help the continued growth of the floral industry.

He has served as a leader in numerous industry associations and was the recipient of the 2021 FSFA Lifetime Achievement Award, AIFD 2021 Special Award of Dedication, AIFD 2022 Special Award of Recognition, and 2022 GLFA National Service Award. Jackie’s extensive travels across the world afford many opportunities to interact with designers of all levels and share this extensive background and experience to florists everywhere.

Jennifer Linehan


Jennifer Linehan CF, CFD

Beautiful Blooms by Jen was born from Jen Linehan’s love of flowers and the floral industry. Jen has known since 7th grade, after helping in a flower shop during the holidays, that this was what she wanted to do! After majoring in Ag Education at OSU, Jen taught high school and designed wedding flowers out of her home, saving every penny she could to realize her dream.

In 2008, after five short years, she was able to open Beautiful Blooms by Jen!

Jen became a Certified Florist in 2008 and was the Great Lakes Floral Association Certified Florist of the Year in 2017. In 2022 Jen volunteered to help

Jacob McCall



Jacob McCall began his career in the floral industry more than 20 years ago. He has worked in a retail flower shop, consulted on product design and development and traveled throughout North and South America educating consumers and his peers. Jacob is known for his cutting-edge trends and color expertise.

Jacob represented the United States at the 2015 Interflora World Cup in Berlin, Germany, competing against 25 other countries. In 2014, he won the coveted Sylvia Cup at the Society of American Florists (SAF) Convention. Jacob also won the Sunshine Cup at the Florida State Florists’ Association Convention in 2013. Competing against nine countries, he represented the United States in the 2011 Gateway to the Americas Cup in Brazil, where he took first runner up. Prior to that, Jacob won the Iron Designer Competition at the International Floriculture Expo in 2010 and 2011. In 2022, Jacob was inducted into the Professional Floral Communicators – International (PFCI). He was inducted into the American Academy of Floriculture in 2012 (AAF), as well as the prestigious American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD) in 2010. Serving multiple years in floral leadership, Jacob was a director at large for AIFD and is the President elect for the Florida State Florists’ Association. Jacob was featured on the hit television show Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? on the Style network. He has designed floral creations for celebrities including Tiger Woods, Grant Hill, Diana Ross and Jessica Simpson.

Jacob’s enthusiasm for the floral industry is infectious, and his Southern charm adds to his down-home approach to sharing his talent with his peers.

Helen Miller


Helen Miller, AIFD, CAFA, CF

Helen Miller, AIFD, CAFA, CF has owned a successful retail florist shop in Adrian, Michigan for over thirty five years. Combining her love of nature and desire for further education within the floral industry, she has taught floral workshops and presented industry programs all over the United States.

Education has always been Helen's passion and she was inducted into the American Institute of Floral Designers and the Canadian Academy of Floral Art in 1997. Helen is an active participant of The Great Lakes Floral & Event Expo and has traveled to Germany to study European Designs for Weddings with the world renowned Gregor Lersh. Helen obtained her Master Gardeners Certification through the Michigan State University Extension Program to help her produce her own unique style of nature inspired designs. Helen is an active member of AIFD and served on the North Central Board. She is a member of Teleflora's prestigious team of Education Specialists. Helen is featured in Syndicate Soles educational videos, designs for their photo shoots and the 2019 Syndicate Sales product catalog.

She has had the honor of designing for the Presidential inauguration of George W. Bush, and is a Creative Consultant for several industry companies. Helen's floral talent has been featured in many publications including Flowers & Floral Management, and The Knot. Anyone who knows Helen knows how passionate she is about flowers and the floral industry. She is sincerely committed to teaching florists about the latest techniques, trends, and creative designs so they may utilize them in their own daily endeavors.

Patience Pickner


Patience Pickner AIFD, CFD, PFCI, SDCF

Patience Pickner AIFD, CFD, PFCI, SDCF Patience Pickner AIFD, PFCI, SDCF lives in Chamberlain SD, a picturesque town located on the banks of the beautiful Missouri River.  Purchasing a bankrupt flower shop in 1998, she quickly turned it around by specializing in customer service, super fresh flowers, unique designs and adding lots of wonderful home décor items. 

Patience has been active with SDFA~ serving on the board for many years, from treasurer to president.  She is also a past President of the North Central Chapter of AIFD.  Patience has been awarded the South Dakota Floral Associations Designer of the Year 3 times, and she was  also honored to be chosen as Business Person of the year in 2010 and 2019, as well as her store, The Picket Fence being voted as the "Best place to work".  She is currently a member of both the SAF design Team and DE design team, a past designer at The White House, and a past member of the Fitz Design Team. She currently works for Kennicott Brothers Wholesale helping with their marketing and education programs.

She is Co-founder of Inspired Design, a design team that spreads their love and passion of floral art across the country, through their website, stage programs, retreats and hands on classes. Follow that party at www.inspireddesign.info

Jerome Raska


Jerome Raska AAF, AIFD, CF. CFD, PFCI

The co-owner of three retail floral and event operations in Metro Detroit. In the floral industry for over 30 years, he shares his experiences as a Teleflora Education Specialist with florists, garden clubs, and suppliers across the country.

He was a past president of the Great Lakes Floral Association and has served the floral industry in many different capacities through SAF and AIFD.

Jenny Thomasson


Jenny Thomasson AAF, AIFD, EMC, PFCI

An accredited member of AIFD, American Institute of Floral Designers, Professional Floral Communicators International and EMC, European Masters Certification. She is a touring commentator for the Education Specialist Team for Teleflora, featured designer in industry publications, networks and podcasts, a lead instructor at the Dr. Delphinium Design Institute in Dallas Texas, sole proprietor for Jenny T Floristry and a newly published author of, Perishable Poetics: Manifesting Emotion through Contemporary Floral Design and Endless Florescence: Transformative Contemporary Dried Floral Design. She is also the CEO and product developer for Meraki Floral Tools, a new tool company and resource worldwide.

Honored to have presented in 2015, 2018 & 2022 at the AIFD National Symposium and representing North America 2016, 2018 at Fleuramour in Belgium, a member of the decorating team for the White House for Christmas, an AIFD Team Designer at the Philadelphia Flower Show 2016, 2017, as well as a dynamic speaker and educator for various groups and schools. A design competitor here within the US as well as China, crossing borders to teach in Mexico and Canada and utilizing virtual platforms for programs and lectures . In July 2022 she took first place in the prestigious FTD Americas Cup and will go on to represent the USA in the Interflora World Cup Competition in Manchester England, September 2023. Jenny has a passion for pushing the boundaries of American floristry and for promoting the art form in a fresh and modern way.

William Santos

William Santos

Owner of Monarch Garden & Floral in Petoskey, MI for the last fourteen years. With over 25 years of design experience he is a strong believer in education and continued learning. His work has been featured in Traditional Home and the Knot magazines. He currently serves as the President of the Petoskey Garden Club.

Andrew Stinson


Andrew Stinson, AIFD, CFD

Andrew has always been a creative soul, from a very young age. He loves artistic crafts, theater, and music. A part-time job in a flower shop during high school sparked his love for floral design and eventually lead to his family to help him open a small shop in his hometown of Ramseur, North Carolina in 2000. In November of 2012, Andrew started his own event design company: WAS Design Works. Today, Andrew travels extensively and is part of several design teams that specialize in special events, weddings, commercial holiday installation, showroom design and merchandising and is on the design team for NAPCO, based in Jacksonville, FL. Winner of several design competitions, Andrew has honed his talents by competing and learning through critiques and judging. A two-time South Carolina Designer of the Year (2005 & 2009) and two-time Palmetto Cup winner (2012 & 2016). Andrew also has the prestige of being the last Designer of the Year winner for the Southern Retail Florist Association in 2010 before they disbanded.

He has recently been the Designer of Year (2021) for the Florida State Florists Assoc. and ranked 6 th in the international Gateway to the Americas Cup (2022) He was inducted into AIFD in 2018. Andrew strives to make his mission one that is focused first and foremost on continuing education opportunities for the floral industry.

Derek Woodruff


Derek Woodruff AAF, AIFD, CFD, CF, PFCI

Derek joined the floral industry at the age of 16 where he began learning floral design in vocational school and working for a local florist. Since then, he as continued to study the trade through institutes such as Michigan State University, the Great Lakes Floral Association (GLFA), and the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD).

In 2008 he launched his own business, Floral Underground. Derek is a captivating speaker who specializes in “today’s consumer” connecting and engaging them through different types of media including demonstrations, subscription services and hands-on workshops with both plants and flowers.

In addition to being an educator, Derek is considered a “National Floral Design Champion” spending many years polishing the practice of live floral design competition. This love of competition has won him numerous awards in the industry, including the GLFA's Chuck Bannow Award and Designer of the Year (twice), AIFD's Bobbi Cup (Thrice), Chicago’s Best in Blooms Competition, second runner-up on a national television floral design competition reality show called: "The Arrangement", is the 2016 Sylvia Cup Design Competition Champion and was the runner-up in the 2018 FTD America’s Cup Competition.