The Illinois Landscape Contractors Association this week announced the dissolution of the Midwest Ecological Landscape Alliance.
In 2002, the founding members of the Midwest Ecological Landscape Alliance started a movement dedicated to creating, restoring and preserving sustainable landscapes. MELA pursued this through education, collaboration and networking. MELA's vision is to transform the green industry so that sustainable design, materials and methods are the professional standard.
Over time, MELA began to face what many small associations encounter in terms of attracting new people to key leadership positions that are committed to seeing the association continue to grow. In light of these challenges, MELA will dissolve alliance as of Jan. 1, 2017.
It was the goal of MELA's leadership to work with another professional organization to carve out a home, complete with a suite of benefits that would draw their members to the new organization. MELA viewed the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association (ILCA) as the association to best advance the interests of sustainable and ecologically-focused landscape professionals.
"We met with former and current MELA leadership and we came to consensus that the best way to carry on the goals, vision, and objectives of MELA was to join ILCA and take advantage of the great resources that they can provide," said Shawn Kingzette, MELA treasurer.
MELA members are committed to sustainability and have a vision for a prosperous future of environmentally responsible landscaping and horticulture. ILCA will continue that commitment by creating a smooth transition. ILCA is offering an organizational membership package that includes access to seven of its events at no cost. The goal is to integrate MELA members as quickly as possible.