Meet the Team
We believe that our company’s success stems from our company culture, a friendly team dynamic, and a collective dedication to landscaping. These are the people who make your gardens grow.
President and Founder
Charlie graduated from The Iowa State University with a BS degree in Horticulture, then started a 35 year career in the landscape industry. Having worked for some of the largest companies in the country in Denver, Dallas and then Chicago, Charlie decided it was time to create Woodlawns Landscape Company in 1997. Charlie started Woodlawns knowing anyone can plant a landscape but having the knowledge and imagination to manage an evolving landscape is a skill that can be hard to find. Woodlawns has assembled a team of professionals, each with a unique skill that when brought together ensures the client that they will find consistently superior service in the field and in their office. One of Charlie’s greatest achievements is to have created a place where people want to come to work everyday because of the spirited company culture he’s fostered. The rule here is when we are on our property we are family; and when we are on your property we are your team. By the way, Charlie does not hold anything against Chris or Melissa for going to Iowa and not Iowa State.
Rule one is: When we are on our property we are family, when we are on your property we are your team. – Charlie
Vice President of Sales
Melissa graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in Geography and Business Management. She began her 20 year career working for a large commercial landscape firm in Chicago developing their seasonal color program before eventually becoming the company’s Vice President of Sales. Melissa joined the Woodlawns family in 2014 as a Senior Account Manager and today is our Vice President of Sales. Her time at Woodlawns has been spent managing Class A commercial properties in the city and throughout the suburbs and a team of knowledgeable account managers.
We are a family of professionals who have found our home at Woodlawns Landscape Company and continue to inspire each other daily. Our company goal is to have the best sites, clients and colleagues in the industry. Mission accomplished. – Melissa
Katrina graduated from North Park University with a degree in Business Administration. As Woodlawns Office Manager, Katrina is instrumental in maintaining the effective communication between all departments. Her skills have been fundamental in development of administrative procedures that ensure all departments operate in conjunction with each other. Katrina’s relationships with the field and administrative personnel have become the bridge that keeps both sides working as one.
Working with a team that I can laugh and learn with is invaluable!! – Katrina
landscape management manager
Victor has been part of the Woodlawns team since 2005. In those 13 years, Victor has rose through the ranks from foreman to his current position as Landscape Management Operations Manager. Victor’s excellent organization skills have helped establish the base for our downtown operations. These same skills have aided him in hiring, training and scheduling for his department. Victor is also responsible for developing the equipment inventory and maintenance program that ensures each team has the proper functioning equipment. Victor enjoys spending time with his family and coaching two youth soccer teams.
I ‘m here because Woodlawns treat their people with respect and it’s a place where I can learn and grow in the industry. – Victor
Landscape Installation Operations Manager
Gabino has worked in the landscape industry for 30 years. He graduated from the College of Lake County with an A.A.S.in Horticulture with a Landscape Design Certificate. His expertise in the landscape installation, hardscapes and seasonal color areas have set us apart from the rest of the pack. In addition to supervising our installation crews, Gabino is responsible for procuring materials, scheduling and holding production meetings. Gabino is also on the board of the National Hispanic Landscape Alliance. One of this organization’s goal is to increase the personal and professional development of Hispanic workers.
Woodlawns is home because I know everyone has my back just like I have theirs’. – Gabino
Senior Account Manager
Dorie is a graduate from Saint Norbert College in De Pere, Wisconsin with a degree in Communications. She genuinely enjoys working with all people and developing long term relationships while managing and improving their landscapes. While she has worked on developing relationships throughout the western suburbs, Dorie has been concentrating on expanding the Woodlawns footprint throughout northern suburbs. Her experience with her previous company has brought many new ideas and concepts to help us better serve our customers.
Woodlawns is a family and a partnership…caring, loving and honest. We value and take pride in our work. – Dorie
Associate Account Manager
Jenna Mackie joined the Woodlawns Landscape team in summer 2019 after 15+ years in the high-end furniture and design industry, cultivating and maintaining client relationships, building on her knowledge of interiors and spatial planning, and overseeing residential and commercial projects from specs to installation. She enjoys client interaction and strives to provide exceptional, high-quality service. Jenna’s passion for all-things design, color, and her great appreciation for landscaping has led her to the industry. She’s ready for her forever work-home with Woodlawns.
Jenna has relocated back to Chicago after a spending a few years in her home town of Kansas City. She graduated from the University of Kansas with a degree in Art History. When she’s not working, she enjoys spending time in museums, on design blogs, and with her family and friends.
Chris graduated from the University of Iowa with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree, after which she went on to work for one of the largest insurance companies in the United States. Chris has taken her experience of managing hundreds of employees and systems management, to assist in the development of some of the processes that Woodlawns uses in our daily operations. Having taken over the accounting department, Chris has streamlined the processes in order to ensure that our clients have all of the financial information they need, when they need it.
It’s exciting to be part of this organization with the diverse personalities coming together as a team which truly represents Woodlawns Landscape Co. – Chris
seasonal color assistant
Sarah graduated from the University of Illinois with a BS degree in Environmental Sustainability. She knew she wanted to build a career in a dynamic industry and began a landscape career in 2017. Her interest in plants and experience in design led her to join Woodlawns’ Seasonal Color Department in 2019. Sarah is excited to be working towards the beautification of Chicagoland’s commercial landscapes, learning from seasoned professionals along the way.
In a competitive landscape market, Woodlawns is one of those special places that attracts and retains talent – a great place to grow! – Sarah Taria
landscape management supervisor
Jose has worked in the landscape industry for nearly 30 years and has found a home at Woodlawns Landscape Company. He oversees a number of our management teams in the field, ensuring safe practices and quality. Additionally, Jose oversees our Pesticide License Training Program, keeping team leaders up-to-date on the latest laws and safety procedures.
landscape enhancement supervisor
Pablo has made a 20-year career of expertly managing employees in the landscape industry. At Woodlawns Landscape Company, he works closely with our Landscape Enhancement Manager and oversees our Enhancement teams. Sharing his extensive knowledge of landscape materials and techniques, Pablo ensures we consistently deliver the highest quality landscapes.
Quality Control Supervisor
Jane graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a degree in Mathematics and Education. She joined the Woodlawns family in 2019, bringing years of management and organizational expertise to our Quality Assurance department. Jane ensures our clients are thrilled with their spaces on the day of install and beyond.
Working with true professionals, both client and team, makes coming to work a joy. – Jane Zelek