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Florida Citrus Hall of Fame inductees chosen for 2016

The selection committee for The Florida Citrus Hall of Fame has announced three distinguished leaders will be inducted into the Hall during the 54th Citrus Celebration Luncheon on Friday, March 11, 2016 at Florida Southern College in Lakeland.

Dr. William S. “Bill” Castle, of Lake Alfred, Fla., John C. “Jack” Norris, of Palm City, Fla. and Victor B. “Vic” Story, Jr., of Lake Wales, Fla., will be honored at the luncheon, scheduled to take place at 11:30 a.m. in the Hollis Wellness Center. 

Dr. Bill Castle is internationally recognized as the leading authority on rootstocks, and the entire Florida citrus industry has been shaped by his work. His research has resulted in improved citrus scion and rootstock development, orchard design and management of high density planting, citrus propagation and pre-plant expert systems, windbreak design and establishment, along with pomegranate cultivars and plantings. He did significant work in developing new sweet oranges, with focus on early-maturing selections with better juice color and flavor, to improve the not-from-concentrate (NFC) product.
Jack Norris is a native Floridian who has devoted countless hours of service to industry, educational, and civic organizations while working in top management positions at major corporations such as Coca-Cola Foods and Turner Foods Corporation. Many of the first high-density plantings in Florida citrus occurred under his leadership, and some of the first privately-owned mechanical harvesting equipment and fungicide trials took place in the company groves. Under Norris’ leadership, Turner Foods grew into one of the largest citrus growing operations in Florida and by the early ‘90s the company had acquired approximately 20,000 acres of citrus properties in the state. 

Vic Story, Jr. serves as president of The Story Companies, a well-respected grove management and fruit marketing operation based in Lake Wales. Vic and his father grew the family business from 100 acres to 2,500 acres in Central and South Florida, and The Story Companies now owns and manages more than 7,000 acres of citrus with 30 full time employees. He also helped to create the Sun Lion citrus label, which is currently sold at Whole Foods and other grocery stores, to provide a high quality Florida branded fresh product to consumers. 

The induction luncheon ceremonies will take place on Friday, March 11, 2016 in the Hollis Wellness Center at Florida Southern College, Lakeland. Invitations will go out in January, and ticket information will be available on the website,, later this month. 
The Florida Citrus Hall of Fame honors distinguished leaders who have made significant contributions to the Florida citrus industry. The Citrus Hall of Fame display and Archive Center is located within the McKay Archive Building at Florida Southern College in Lakeland. For more information on members of the Citrus Hall of Fame, visit the web site at which includes access to biographies and photos on all members, noting their accomplishments and including various industry links.

Tickets to the luncheon, which is sponsored by Florida Citrus Mutual and The Florida Department of Citrus, are $100 for Patron Seating or $1,500 for a Sponsor Table, which includes preferred seating for 8, table signage and a listing in the program. The event will be followed by the Florida Citrus Processors’ Association’s OJ "Meet & Greet" with the inductees as they unveil their names on the Florida Citrus Hall of Fame Tree, located in the McKay Archives Center. A portion of the proceeds from all ticket sales will go to fund an Educational Outreach program to promote the history of the Florida citrus industry.

To purchase tickets, please call Florida Citrus Mutual at (863) 682-1111 or visit the Florida Citrus Hall of Fame website at

Contact information: 
Brenda Eubanks Burnette 
Tel: (561) 351-4314 

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