T. Jay Higgins Suntory Flowers

Sep 14, 2021
Suntory Flowers Names Higgins North America General Manager

Suntory Flowers has named business partner T. Jay Higgins general manager for North America. Higgins is president and owner of Sun-Fire Nurseries in Sarasota, Florida. In addition to being the top producer of Sun Parasol mandevillas, Sun-Fire’s offering has expanded to include Brindabella and Sunrosa roses, a newer category for Suntory. 

“I am very excited for the new opportunity with Suntory, but it would not be an option without having great people at Sun-Fire,” Higgins says. “Terri Kelley, my general manager, and Paul Cummiskey, head grower, and others make it possible for me to pursue other goals. I will always have an eye on the big picture at Sun-Fire, but I am really looking forward to working with the full Suntory line and continuing to grow the North American market. I have a lot to learn and will be leaning on the great team already in place as we look to strengthen current relationships and build new ones.”

For 16 years, Sun-Fire and Suntory have worked closely on product development and industry promotions and exhibitions.

“Owning my own business, I would have never imagined working for someone,” Higgins says. “That alone speaks volumes on what I think of Suntory as a company and the people there. I have known Taizo (Suntory Flowers president) and Masa for over 15 years and feel like we are much more than just business partners. Fortunately, I already have a great working relationship with Delilah and Lorentina, so it will be an easy transition.”

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