The Florida FFA State Officer Team was traveling the state last week, taking part in their annual good will tour. And the last leg of their travels led them to the Southeast AgNet office where they had the opportunity to learn a little more about the communication side of Florida Agriculture.
After welcoming the officers to the company’s headquarters in Ocala, SEA President Gary Cooper gave a brief history on how he got started in ag media and founded the company. He then discussed the role of new communication technologies entering the agriculture arena. “Florida is still a top-10 ag state, but it is going to change pretty dramatically, and with change brings the need for multi-platform communications.”
While SEA began as a farm broadcasting company, operations have expanded to include magazines, Web sites, e-newsletters, social media, and more. The company publishes Citrus Industry and Florida Pest Pro magazines; broadcasts 19 daily radio programs on more than 70 stations throughout Florida, Georgia and Alabama; delivers daily agricultural Web news at www.SoutheastAgNet.com; and manages the “World’s Premier Citrus Expo” annual grower seminar/trade show program.
SEA’s Director of Radio Programming Randall Weiseman and Ag News Director Julie McPeake joined the conversation via Skype to give the FFA group a flavor for farm broadcasting in today’s agri-media environment. McPeake interviewed State President Caitlyn Prichard about the purpose of the trip and what she hopes to take away from it.
Cooper wrapped up discussions by thanking the FFA officers for their continued volunteer participation at the Citrus Expo. The officers and SEA staff then convened at Cooper’s home, where he and wife/company co-owner Robin Loftin hosted a “wild beast feast” luncheon complete with venison, ribs, pheasant, black-eyed peas, and other culinary delights.
Listen to McPeake interviewing Prichard here: