At Horizon, we are proud of our team of employees. Through formal education, on-site training, and many combined years of work experience, we have built a strong base of men and women who maintain the highest level of workmanship. Many landscape contractors in the Bergen County, NJ area, though they employ some year-round employees, will still sustain a high turnover rate with seasonal help. Horizon is proud of the fact that our entire landscaping team returns to work year after year. Many have been with us for 15 years or more. As employers, we make every effort to be flexible, understanding, generous, and helpful. In return have been rewarded with a loyal, reliable, and hard-working team.
In addition to formal education in the field of ornamental horticulture, continuing education is achieved through courses attended through Rutgers University, community colleges, continuing education courses, Dale Carnegie courses, NJ Irrigation Association technical courses, NJ State Landscape trade seminars, and in-house training.
Michael Kukol – President
Mike’s love for the landscape industry goes back to his childhood when he watched his dad cut their own lawn, first with a reel mower and later with a gas-powered mower. When he was big enough, he started pushing that mower around his block, mowing lawns for his neighbors. In high school, he worked for a local landscaping business, where he learned much about the trade.
In 1976, fresh from college with a degree in horticulture and a jar of spare change, Mike launched Horizon Landscape Company. Since then, the company has grown and diversified every year. From that one-man mowing operation, Horizon has become an industry leader that North Jersey families and companies know and trust for landscape maintenance, construction, irrigation, lighting and snow services.
Mike is active in state-level industry leadership, holding seats on the NJ Landscape Contractors Association, NJ Green Industry Council, Irrigation Association of NJ, State of NJ Landscape Irrigation Contractors Examining Board.
When he is not in the office, Mike enjoys traveling with his wife Joanne, training his dog Coco, and spending time with his family at their cabins in upstate New York.
Edward Thomas – General Manager and Landscape Management
Edward Thomas has been involved in the landscape industry since 1964 when he started raking clippings and pushing a mower for his neighbor’s landscape business in high school. Ed started at Horizon Landscape on Valentine’s Day in 1983, and is currently in charge of our landscape management services. During his time here, Ed has been a driving force in bringing great organization and leadership skills to our company.Ed has played an essential role in the growth of the company, stemming from his commitment to customer satisfaction and through personal relationships with his clients.
Ed Thomas and Mike Kukol go back many years. Prior to the founding of Horizon Landscape Company, Ed was the foreman at another company and Mike was his laborer. Ed has received certificates from Dale Carnegie Training in sales and leadership, is certified by the State of NJ’s Department of Environmental Protection in Pesticide Application and Management, and was a member of Echo Inc.’s Professional Landscaper Council. His leadership experience extends to his personal life, where he serves as Clerk and an Elder of Session for his church and sings in the choir. As an Eagle Scout, he has also served as Cubmaster of Pack 88 and Scoutmaster of Troop 88 in Waldwick, NJ.
During his free time Ed enjoys a good game of golf.
Gary Fernbacher – Landscape Construction Manager
Gary has been a part of the Horticulture business since childhood working in the family business. He joined Horizon in 2011 with over 25 years of landscape experience in project management and residential and commercial sales and installation ranging from $1000 to over a million dollars. As the Landscape Construction Manager, Gary oversees each project from start to finish ensuring efficiency and satisfaction. His expertise include, but not limited to; site planning, demolition, grading, drainage, planting, patio and retaining wall construction, masonry, project management and customer service. Over his career, Gary has been recognized and received numerous awards from the NJLCA for his accomplished projects.
Gary is certified with the ICPI (Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute) and LIC (Landscape Industry Certification) certificates. He is active in the NJLCA (New Jersey Landscape Contractors Association) and currently serves as a Judge’s Technical Assistant for the annual LIC exams.
Family is most important to Gary; he also enjoys gardening, hiking, camping, some sports, and the beach.
Tim Fox – Senior Landscape Designer
Tim Fox joined Horizon Landscape in 2013 as a Senior Landscape Designer whose mission and passion is to help homeowners realize and achieve the vision for their dream property. Tim works closely with clients to create beautiful and functional outdoor spaces and specializes in Planting, Outdoor Living Spaces, Outdoor Kitchen and Pool Area Design. Tim holds a bachelor’s degree in Landscape Architecture from Rutgers University and has extensive experience working on a wide array of properties throughout the state of New Jersey. He has won several awards from the New Jersey Landscape Contractors Association for his exceptional landscape design and build projects.You can trust him to really listen to your thoughts and ideas and develop a landscape design that will maximize your property’s potential.
When Tim is not working, he enjoys spending time with family, going down the shore, traveling, and all types of outdoor sports.
Shaun Thomson – Landscape Designer
Shaun’s passion for landscape design began in high school, when he took a job cutting and maintaining lawns in his local community. Passion became ambition, and he followed it into Bergen Community College, graduating with an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Landscape Design/Build. He then went on to Rutgers University for his Bachelor’s Degree in Landscape Architecture. During his time at Rutgers, Shaun joined Horizon as an intern, working in the Maintenance and Construction division from the summer of 2011 until his transition to designing in 2014. He is now part of Horizon’s full-time staff, specializing in creative and environmentally sustainable landscape design. Shaun’s strength is his understanding of what a project requires from the ground up. His greatest satisfaction is working hand in hand with clients to create their dream landscape.
Shaun enjoys spending time with his family, surfing, snowboarding, training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, hiking, and traveling.
Kurt Heidecke – Landscape Supervisor
Kurt has been with Horizon Landscape since 1990 when he started with our landscape construction department. He has worked in all of our divisions and is a multi-talented employee. He is responsible for field management, site development and transforming a landscape from design to a living, breathing, outdoor experience. Over the years, Kurt’s attention to detail has developed an expertise for recognizing the little things that will make your landscape look extraordinary.
Tom Hartigan – Irrigation and Landscape Lighting Manager
Tom worked at UPS for 18 years in Management before realizing his love for the outdoors and his passion for landscape irrigation and lighting design. Tom joined Horizon Landscape in 2008 as the Irrigation Manager, shortly after he took on the responsibilities of creating a new division for Landscape Lighting. Certified by the New Jersey Rutgers Agricultural School for Irrigation System Design and Installation and a Certified Landscape Lighting LED designer and installer by Unique Lighting Systems, Tom excels in providing creative and functional design and installation solutions for every project. As the manager for the lighting and irrigation division, his responsibilities include sales, supervising installation and service crews, interacting with clients, training new technicians, and performing quality reviews.
Tom is also certified as a Backflow Tester by New England Water Works and completed his “Lighting and Technology and Education” certification by Unique Lighting Systems in California. He has designed and installed many award winning projects recognized by the NJLCA and Turf Design Build Magazine.
In his spare time, Tom enjoys spending time with his family and his dogs Murphy and Cody, and is a Ducati enthusiast.
Tim Grosman – Maintenance Production Manager
Tim Grosman’s love and passion for landscaping has existed since childhood. He always remained dedicated to the field whether he was working in his yard or for neighbors in his community. Tim pursued his dream by earning a degree in Bachelor of Technology in Plant Science where courses such as Turf Grass Management, Soil Science, Plant Pathology and Botany would allow him to achieve the knowledge he needed to pursue his professional career.
In 2009, shortly after graduation, Tim joined Horizon Landscape as a Chemical Applicator and was later promoted to Maintenance Production Manager. Tim holds a Pesticide Applicators License and is a Certified Fertilizer Applicator.
As a Production Manager, he is responsible for seeing that Horizon’s commercial and residential maintenance department operates properly and efficiently. Tim also manages crews, trains new maintenance employees, and coordinates daily schedules.
In his spare time, Tim loves spending time in the outdoors with his family.
Karishma Ramani – Sales and Marketing Manager
Karishma joined Horizon Landscape Company in 2015 with over 16 years of experience in Marketing and Business Management. A graduate of Rutgers Business School with a BS in Marketing, her passion for Marketing continues to grow with the market changes and trends. With her former position in the Outdoor Industry for 11 years and prior experience of owning her own business, she brings her expertise to the company as a Sales and Marketing Manager.
At Horizon, Karishma helps lead and manage the Sales team through the sales process and helps achieve potential sales goals. As head of Marketing, her goal is ensuring company growth by developing, managing, and implementing marketing plans and continually improving marketing results for the company.
In addition to working, Karishma is also passionate about spending time with family, cooking, working out, reading, and performing ministry work.
Deb Van Schepen – Irrigation and Lighting Administrator
Deb joined Horizon Landscape in 2007 as a part time Office Administrator with several general office duties. Her position ultimately evolved into a full time Irrigation and Landscape Lighting department administrator. Her responsibilities include scheduling of all service appointments, billing, account maintenance, and communication between the irrigation and lighting crews and the manager. Deb oversees the development and execution of all irrigation and lighting service contracts, and provides the crews with detailed work orders and routing map for each day’s appointments. She also maintains truck repair and maintenance logs for the company’s fleet of vehicles. Deb worked in the “not-for-profit sector” for over 30 years prior to working at Horizon.
In her spare time, she enjoys a good book and vacationing in the mountains.
Karen Thomas, SHRM-CP – Human Resources and Insurance
Karen Thomas, our payroll specialist, is also in charge of human resources, employee benefits, and corporate insurance policies. She joined Horizon Landscape in 1983 and has held various positions in our office since that time.
Karen is a certified dressmaker/clothing designer and an accomplished musician. Prior to working at Horizon Landscape, her experience included customer service, accounting, and payroll.
Laurie Tanis – Accounts Payable and Receivable
Laurie began her career at Horizon Landscape in 1988 following a position in Banking. Her responsibilities include Accounts Payable/Receivable as well as billing for landscape construction projects and management services. Laurie says: “It is like a family here, the employees really care about each other and do their best to serve the people we work