Members of the Western Growers Board of Directors convened this week in Orange County under the leadership of Chairman Bruce Taylor to deliberate the top issues affecting the industry. High on the list of issues discussed were the drought and regulatory restrictions on water supply, food safety, labor union activities and immigration reform. Several standing committees featured guest speakers. Dr. Jay Famiglietti, a senior water cycle scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and David Orth, general manager of the Kings River Conservation District, presented to the Water Committee; Amy Wolfe, president and CEO of AgSafe, presented to the Labor Committee; and Dr. Jerry Baron, executive director of IR-4 presented to the Food Safety, Science & Technology Committee.
The Executive and Audit Committees kicked off the meeting this week on Tuesday, the former receiving updates on key fiscal, insurance, legislative, WG Foundation and Association issues. The Executive Committee is comprised of Board Chairman Bruce Taylor, Vic Smith, Larry Cox, Mark Teixeira, John Manfre, Steve Barnard, Mike Jarrard and Tom Nassif.
Participants in the WG Future Volunteer Leaders (FVL) program heard from directors on the Industry Champions Panel about their business and life experiences. The panel consisted of Sammy Duda, vice president of Duda Farm Fresh foods, Inc.; Gary Pasquinelli, CEO and co-owner of Pasquinelli Produce; and Garland Reiter, CEO Reiter Affiliated Companies. The purpose of the panel is to provide FVLs with candid insight into the industry and also provide a forum to establish meaningful relationships with select members of the Board of Directors.
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