Marty Thiel is an outdoorsman who turned his passion for the outdoors into a career. During college, he took his first job with Graff’s Turf during the summer. Enjoying all things outside, Thiel began harvesting, stacking sod, and all other manual labor duties with the business. As he became more interested in his role with the company he decided to stay and work in the business full-time instead of returning to college. He started learning more about producing crops, working and learning sod farming, and the business aspects of the operation. After a few years, Marty joined the management team as the farm manager. He helped grow the company and the sports turf division, where they produced the sod and installed it in Major League Baseball stadiums across several states.

In 2007, Marty had the opportunity to purchase the company in partnership with James Graff. Together, they bought the company from Graff’s parents. The business owners continued to grow in the sports turf industry across multiple states while growing their landscape and commercial base in Colorado. In 2015 it was apparent that Colorado would have a limited water supply. As a sod farm, and producing and selling an intense water product, Marty and Jeff decided to pivot and step into the residential and commercial artificial turf business. This was in addition to the sod operation, where they still produce and sell sod.

Located 70 miles northeast of Denver, Graff’s Turf produces sod blends that are adaptable to the extreme Colorado climate of the Front Range Region. In 2020, Graff’s Turf expanded the artificial turf division into Corpus Christi, Texas. Their long-term goals are to grow the artificial turf division throughout the United States.

Today they offer the widest variety of turfgrass in the industry. Along with their proprietary blends, Graff’s Turf provides fresh-cut sod grown under license from several innovative leaders in turfgrass development. Through Marty’s dedication and perseverance, Graff’s Turf has become a leading sod grower emphasizing quality, innovation, and superior customer service.

Marty’s Next 2 Natural Turf business is an artificial turf product that enhances the look and feel of any outdoor space. Next 2 Natural Turf is now introducing one of the 1st 1-DNA 100% recyclable artificial turf products into the United States for commercial, residential, and sports applications. The main emphasis of this product is the environmental benefits. Their 1-DNA product is entirely circular, which can be recycled and reused to produce future turf or other plastic products and will not dispose into landfills.

Marty became a member of Acumen’s Front Range Region in Colorado in 2021. After a year of Business Owner coaching and mastermind collaboration with other owners in the area, Marty has implemented EOS as their business structure and Culture Index for their hiring efforts. He mentions that being with other business owners grounded in their faith and sharing successes and struggles has been a game changer for him.

Marty relates to Acumen’s values of “Challenging” and “Bold” He says:

“Being a part of this group drives a new level of personal and professional drive to be better every day. Being bold challenges me to get to a different intensity level and think to find better solutions for our company and those involved.”

Marty loves doing outdoor activities with his wife and their five children. His family is involved with 4-H, and they travel often showing livestock. Marty spends his time archery hunting and saltwater fishing in the Gulf of Mexico.

Look at more information about GraffsTurf and Next 2 Natural Turf and their professional excellence in “green” practices for environmental responsibility.

Elizabeth Shandy
Post by Elizabeth Shandy
December 8, 2022
Elizabeth Shandy graduated from Washburn University with a Bachelors in Public Relations. In addition, she received her Masters in Leadership from Grantham University. Her deep passion for leadership came from her role as a peer advisor for nontraditional and military students while studying for her Masters. Elizabeth is the Growth Marketing Specialist enhancing our brand awareness, content management and supporting regional and team marketing. She has several years of marketing experience as well as skillsets in recruiting and advising. Her favorite thing about being part of our marketing team is getting to make a creative impact every day. She has several certificates in digital marketing including social media, graphic design, sales support, and content management. Elizabeth and her husband, Nick, have one daughter and attend Prince of Peace. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring wineries, crafting, playing keyboard, and spending time with her friends and family.