Five Minutes with NAFAS Chief Executive, Steven Lane

Five Minutes with NAFAS Chief Executive Steven Lane

As specialists in floristry holidays and travel, we are incredibly proud of our long-standing friendship and partnership with the National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies – or NAFAS as it is known. We talked the organisation’s Chief Executive Steven Lane about why NAFAS matters.

Steven Lane NAFAS portrait


ECT: You were appointed Chief Executive of NAFAS in 2019 – why did you want the job?

SL: I am very much a processes sort of person. I have been in the charity sector for over 20 years and my last two roles have been about going in when the charity has been in a little bit of trouble and making sure all the correct processes and procedures are in place. When I was told about NAFAS and went to meet with the then Chair Jan Law and two or three other trustees, it was clear the organisation wasn’t in a very healthy position when it came to governance and finance. It was crying out for change and I quite fancied that challenge.

ECT: What makes NAFAS such a special organisation?

SL: NAFAS has been going for 60 years and has something like 40,000 members; that popularity alone makes it special, but its structure is also quite unique. Membership can be whatever you want it to be. You go in at club level and if you are looking for a creative, social gathering with like-minded people, then you can have that. Alternatively, there is a pathway right the way through the organisation - members can go on to be demonstrators, teachers, judges, speakers, Area chairs, even trustees. And in some cases, membership enables people to develop their professional careers – we’ve had people come through the system who have gone on to run their own florists, and we’ve had florists come to us to learn more about floral design. Very few other organisations offer that mix. And there is so much passion and dedication within the membership. It really is extraordinary - people don’t just turn up once a month for a meeting, NAFAS becomes part of their life. I work alongside the Directors, who all come from within the organisation, and they have toured the world giving demonstrations. It’s a lifestyle.

NAFAS Floral design flower arrangement

ECT: Why is the partnership with ECT Travel important to you?

SL: If you have any ambition as an organisation then you need to be associated with the very best. I consider NAFAS to be a world leader in floral design so why wouldn’t we want to partner with a travel company that leads the way in floral tours and trips and events?

WAFA Michael Bowyer


ECT:  Do you arrange flowers?

SL: No, I know absolutely nothing about flower arranging! Although I am in awe of what NAFAS members create. I have become a little bit of a gardener over last few years though and when I go to area shows, I often buy rose plants. I love white roses.

Meijer rose white roses