Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced the appointment of 13 individuals to serve on the National Watermelon Promotion Board. Members newly appointed to serve three-year terms are:
- Ernesto Chamberlain, Nogales, Ariz.
- Christian Murillo, Nogales, Ariz.
- Dan O’Connor, Pompano Beach, Fla.
- Chadelle Robinson, Las Cruces, N.M.
- Gerardo A. Lozano, Edinburg, Texas
- Ward Thomas, McAllen, Texas
Members re-appointed include:
- Mathew Singletary, Alva, Fla.
- James F. Shepherd, Fort Myers, Fla.
- Lee Wroten, Lakeland, Fla.
- Alan M. Guzi, Pompano Beach, Fla.
- Rolando Rosales, Pompano Beach, Fla.
- Katelyn Kelley Miller, Punta Gorda, Fla.
- Jeff Fawcett, of Edinburg, Texas
“Growers, shippers and importers of watermelon in the United States will be well served by these individuals who provide key direction on research, information gathering and promotions to support the watermelon industry as it works to meet consumer demand,” Perdue said.
The 37-member board is composed of 14 producers, 14 handlers, eight importers and one public member. Since 1966, Congress has authorized 22 industry-funded research and promotion boards to provide a framework for agricultural industries to pool resources and combine efforts to develop new markets, strengthen existing markets and conduct important research and promotion activities. The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) provides oversight, paid for by industry assessments, which helps ensure fiscal responsibility, program efficiency and fair treatment of participating stakeholders.