It is both and honor and a privilege to be able to congratulate Hufnagel Landscaping Design & Construction Group on winning the 2011 Contractor of the Year Award given by the New Jersey Landscape Contractors Association.
As a Hoboken resident, I have worked with Hufnagel Landscaping and Valerie for the 15 or so I have been a property owner. She and her son Jason have done everything from design my entire garden to replacing my fence and re-building a spectacular back porch. Her work is meticulous and those who work for her respectful and amazingly industrious. I am always fascinated that there can be so many folks hauling materials through my house and I still am able to walk in to my front hall and find it neater than I left it at the onset of the job.
While all of this is wonderful, one of the things I most respect about Valerie is her honesty. There are many contractors will bid out a job and then add on additional costs for materials that they did not “expect to need”. At no time has Valerie ever not held to the original cost of the estimate even though I know there have been moments when her company has had to incur additional costs while working on the job.
In addition, I am also a 7th grade teacher for Stevens Cooperative School. One of the elements of this year’s Science curriculum involved looking at sustainability, specifically with respect to the plants indigenous to our area. I looked to Valerie and Hufnagel Landscaping to help educate our students. I felt that her expertise might enable them have a greater understanding of the subject. She accepted my request to come and speak without hesitation. She and her co-worker Val D’Antonio arrived with all the tools of the trade and took several hours out of the day to not only speak with, but also, help guide the 7th graders as they re-furbished the planters in the courtyard, which were originally donated by her and the Hoboken Garden Club. The look on the students’ faces, when the job was complete, was amazing. They were thrilled with the experience and proud of their accomplishments. Valerie not only served as our guide, but Hufnagel also donated mulch and bulbs so that the gardens will look even more beautiful when spring rolls around.
As a community member, I am aware of the various organizations sponsored by Valerie and Hufnagel Landscaping. They are avid supporters of the Hoboken Historical Museum’s annual Secret Garden Tour, All Saints Jubilee Center and the beautification of Syball’s Cave. This says a tremendous amount of the degree with which Val and her company exhibit care and concern for those organizations that support and educate the people of Hoboken.
There is much more that can be said with respect to Valerie Hufnagel and Hufnagel Landscaping, but I shall close where I began. I wish to again offer my congratulations on a well-deserved award and am honored to have worked with Valerie over the years and share my respect for all that she has accomplished.
Katherine Kingsbury Gilman