Don DeFever, CEO
Don’s lifelong passion for horticulture began when he was a teenager, and he cared for his mother’s garden of nearly 200 roses for years. His first business provided gardening services to San Diego residential estates, and this passion led to an Ornamental Horticulture degree from California Polytechnic State University.
A landscape enterprise professional, Don is a leader in landscaping and resource management, and he co-developed industry certifications as a board member and lifetime member of the California Landscape Contractors Association (CLCA). He is a longtime member of the Building Owner's and Manager's Association (BOMA), and industry organizations including CREW and USGBC, He has been recognized for landscaping excellence, including an award for the Hewlett Packard World Headquarters landscape presented by Nancy Reagan at the White House.
Don’s certifications and licenses include Master Water Auditor, LEED accreditation, Contractors C-27 License, Pest Control License, and Certified Landscape Professional. Don co-founded Jensen Landscape Services (JLS) in 1988, and led the company in growing from a "one man and a truck" operation to becoming one of the top one percent of businesses in the industry. He has been a member of the Santa Clara Valley Water District Advisory Committee and the Cal Poly Advisory Board since the 1990s. He is a co-founder of Banksia.
Don and his wife Nancy have three sons. His spare time is spent outdoors, backpacking, backcountry skiing, fishing, boating, biking, and travelling. He loves gardening and does his own yard.
Kevin Pearson, President
Kevin began his landscaping career as a youth, caring for neighborhood gardens and irrigation systems. Today, as an experienced landscaping professional, he is recognized for his horticultural expertise, operational leadership, and outstanding performance. He has earned 30+ commendations and industry excellence awards for customer service, operational process, financial acuity, and landscape innovations.
A licensed contractor C-27, Irrigation Auditor, triple-certified Landscape Technician, Certified Water Manager, Licensed Pest Control Operator, Certified Parks & Recreational Professional, and Playground Safety Inspector, Kevin earned a degree in Horticulture, with emphasis on Agriculture Engineering, at California Polytechnic State University. His experience includes 18 years with Jensen Landscape Services, where he was VP, he moved the company into new markets, and he built and trained an A-caliber team of horticultural talent. He instituted quality controls to manage client service and exceed customer service expectations. In 2013, Kevin was named General Manager for the Landscape Division of Rubicon Enterprises, elevating performance to the top of the industry, leading a 30% expansion of the business, and recruiting and training strategic talent, prior to co-founding Banksia Landscaping.
Outside of work, Kevin and his wife Pam shuttle their three girls between soccer fields. Other interests include motorcycle touring, camping, cooking, and golf.