Lisa Belisle has a lively background in the floral industry. She started in small Wisconsin floral shops while taking every opportunity to educate herself including studying with many mentors. During the last twenty years, Lisa has participated in every part of the floral industry including management, wholesale flower sales, exporting New Zealand-grown flowers, coordinating shipping, and owning her own small businesses. Today, Lisa’s passions are continuing her own education and teaching beginner floral design in the Chicago and Milwaukee areas. Lisa is an adventurous person who travels widely to study with mentors in their native countries while admiring that country’s culture, geography, flora and fauna. Lisa attributes her talent for making unique tropical arrangements to the time she spent in Papua New Guinea where she was surrounded by Mother Nature’s bounty. There were no wholesalers or suppliers anywhere so Lisa had to think “outside the box” and use what surrounded her in the gardens at her home and at her friend’s nearby plantation in order to market her floral creations. An example of something she took for granted is all of the tying materials normally available to her like yarn, raffia, coloured wires, and bark-covered wire. In Papua New Guinea, she had no tying materials of any sort unless she had remembered to purchase some while visiting Australia. So, Lisa would go into her back yard, look up into the trees, grab hold of an air root that was long enough to reach, and pull down the root hoping it wasn’t a snake. She would use these air roots to bind flowers and make different textures on stems. As you can see, Lisa, a true scavenger, is resourceful when the situation requires her to “think on her feet”. In the class room, Lisa is a great storyteller and is able to adapt to all the needs of her students. Her patience is endless when teaching her students about the challenges of the floral industry and helping them to acquire the technical skills. Many people think that florists are just like little fairies who play with flowers all day and create magic to counteract the bad behavior of a customer who shows up in a shop and demands that something be made “on the spot” because some important event had been forgotten. However, our students learn that florists are not magical fairies and they try very hard to create just the right floral item to make a customer happy. Lisa always arrives at her classes excited to share her collection of floral design knowledge.
Lisa Belisle is involved with many professional and educational associations and recently completed her AIFD certification which is recognized nationally. In her constant effort to extend her knowledge and educational toolbox and skill set, Lisa received her certification from Illinois State Floral Association in 2016 earning her the title of ICPF, Illinois Certified Professional Florist. At the 2017 AIFD (American Institute of Floral Designers) Seattle Symposium Lisa was inducted and pinned with her AIFD credentials. AIFD is a national organization that continues to advance the art of professional floral design through education, service, and leadership, and to recognize the achievement of excellence in this art form. Lisa is actively involved in WUMFA (Wisconsin Upper Michigan Floral Association) where she wears many hats as President-Elect, Design Room and Design Contest Chair and the Education Chair. Always a person willing to jump in on a committee and make sure the conference is a success.