Florida Members Travel to Utah for Successful Convention

January 2024

More than 80 Florida Farm Bureau grassroots members and staff traveled to Salt Lake City, Utah for the 105th annual American Farm Bureau Convention. Florida received many accolades. 

Young Farmers and Ranchers Bernie and Avery LeFils (Volusia County), John David and Emilee Peterson (Baker County) and Erin Jones (Gilchrist County) competed in the Excellence in Agriculture, Achievement in Agriculture and Discussion Meet contests. The LeFils and Petersons were among the top ten national finalists for the Excellence in Agriculture and Achievement in Agriculture award. Jones advanced to the Sweet 16 round of the Discussion Meet. 

Kevin Lussier of Alachua County was named the American Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee Chair. Lussier will serve on the AFBF Board of Directors for the upcoming year representing the YF&R committee. Additionally, President Jeb S. Smith was elected another two-year term on the American Farm Bureau Board of Directors. 

Florida delegates voted on policies to guide the organization’s work in 2024. Key topics ranged from artificial intelligence, to labor, to crop insurance. 

Florida also received the Leader Award, the Apex Award and the Awards of Excellence in all four program areas: Advocacy, Coalitions & Partnerships, Engagement & Outreach and Leadership & Business Development. State Farm Bureaus are recognized with a Leader Award when each of their board members donates at least $50 to the Foundation for Agriculture and the Apex Award is given to state Farm Bureaus that have increased total contributions to the Foundation by 10% or more over the previous year. Broward County Farm Bureau was recognized by the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture for its 30 years of consecutive donations.  

Marshal Sewell, founder of Mind Your Melon and Levy County Farm Bureau member, was invited to attend the convention by Zippy Duvall to unveil a new collaboration with the Ad Council, the “Love, Your Mind” campaign.  

For photos of Florida Farm Bureau members, visit the online gallery.