Richard Lutes was born in Lynn, MA, on the north shore of Boston, and spent his first 12 years there. Then his father decided to move the family to the Twin Cities, in search of affordable college educations for his eight children. (Did he bother to research what the winters are like?)
Richard earned an associate degree in pre-architecture from the University of Minnesota and a bachelor’s degree in education from Winona State University. After graduating he spent four years as an airborne parachute rigger and an air cargo airdrop specialist in the Army Reserve and the Minnesota Air National Guard.
Throughout college he’d worked part-time for a Minneapolis wholesale florist supply and they offered him full-time employment after his military duty. This sounded like a better option to him than teaching social studies to high school students.
Richard’s career has encompassed all aspects of the floral industry. As a wholesale florist he has extensive experience in sales, customer service, procurement, operations, logistics, supply chain, marketing and management. He assisted his wife in all areas of her retail flower shop, and he was even a California fresh flower grower and production manager. He’s been the general manager of a large orchid nursery and has owned his own floral sales and marketing company.
Richard joined The Produce News in 2013 as floral editor and director of floral marketing. He is excited about the opportunity to grow in the areas of advertising and writing about the floral industry.
In his free time (there is such a thing?), Richard enjoys fine woodworking, pen-and-ink drawing, DIY projects, Minnesota Twins baseball, fishing in as many of the state’s 10,000 lakes as possible, and dreaming about living somewhere warm. Richard and his wife, Susan, live in the Minneapolis suburb of Golden Valley, MN. They are the parents of two grown daughters and two grown sons, who they thought were all successfully launched until the youngest one recently boomeranged.