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Western Growers to honor Sonny Rodriguez at 2024 annual meeting

Western Growers will bestow The Growers Company President and CEO Sonny Rodriguez with the 2024 Award of Honor at the organization's 98th Annual Meeting in November. The Award of Honor is Western Growers' highest recognition of achievement and is given to individuals who have contributed extensively to the agricultural community.

The Growers Company has offered custom produce harvesting since 1950 and is a third-generation family business. It is based in Yuma, Arizona, with offices in California; the company harvests lettuce, mix lettuce, cauliflower, broccoli and many other commodities.

Rodriguez joined the company in 1975. Under his leadership, The Growers Company thrived on its mission to serve customers' needs while providing fair, equitable and opportunistic employment for all of their workers.

"The Western Growers Award of Honor is typically bestowed on the growers for whom this association was created in 1926," said Western Growers President & CEO Dave Puglia. "This year, we break with that practice to honor Sonny Rodriguez. As President and CEO of The Growers Company, Sonny ensures that his customers – growers of fresh produce – can be confident that their crops will be expertly tended and harvested by skilled farm employees, and he does this with the highest commitment to integrity, ethical conduct and compassion for all.

"Sonny started working in the fields as a teenager and has never strayed from the values his father inculcated in him, none more important than treating every worker with dignity and respect. Few in our industry have done as much to educate elected leaders and government officials about the many positive contributions – and the many challenges confronting – America's fresh produce industry. He is a respected and well-known advocate for agricultural labor reform that would honor the work of our farm employees and bring rationality to the industry.

"In everything he does for the industry, Sonny's lifelong commitments to his faith and his family, starting with his wife, Cynthia, are always paramount. It is entirely fitting that we will honor Sonny this November as the Western Growers Annual Meeting returns to his home state of Arizona."

Rodriguez was first elected to the Western Growers Board of Directors in 1998.

"I have no words to describe how grateful I am to be chosen this year for the Award of Honor," Rodriguez said. "I am truly humbled to be recognized by my peers and to stand among the great men and women who were honored before me. The real honor is being able to serve our industry by being on the Board of Western Growers."

Rodriguez's achievements will be celebrated at the Award of Honor Dinner Gala at the Western Growers 2024 Annual Meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona, on Nov. 3-6, 2024.

For more information:
Ann Donahue
Western Growers
Tel.: +1 (949) 302-7600
Email: [email protected]

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