FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 14, 2018
Contact: Barbara J. Miedema
Belle Glade, FL……Brian R. Lohmann was promoted to Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and General Manager of the Cooperative at the April 2018 Board of Directors meeting.
“Brian has proven his leadership capabilities and the ability to juggle several different projects efficiently. His understanding of the ‘big’ picture of our business is critical in continuing to lead the Cooperative successfully into the future,” said Cooperative CEO and President Antonio L. Contreras.
Lohmann joined the Cooperative in 2008 and was promoted to Vice President Chief Financial Officer in 2015. Following the company’s internal reorganization, in addition to his current duties he will be the General Manager overseeing all the administrative functions of the business as well as the environmental, safety and security area.
Prior to joining the Cooperative, Lohmann worked for Pioneer Growers, Inc. as Director of Replenishment. He started his career in public accounting with Deloitte & Touche in Jacksonville, including ex-patriot service in Saudi Arabia. He owned and operated his own accounting firm in Belle Glade for 13 years. A native Floridian, who spent virtually his entire life in the Glades region of Palm Beach County, Lohmann graduated from the University of Florida in 1988 with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in accounting. He also has been very active in the community where he sat on the Glades Day School Board of Trustees from 2002-2018 and served as chair or vice-chair for most of his tenure. He was appointed to the Palm Beach County Health Care District by the Palm Beach County Commission in 2011 to present and served as vice-chair and chairman of the finance committee.
Following the retirement of Kathleen Durrell Lockhart, Manager of Environmental Affairs, the Cooperative is pleased to announce the addition of Grant J. Lanham as Vice President- Environmental, Safety and Security. Lanham was Environmental and Health and Safety (EHS) Compliance Specialist for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles in Kokomo, IN from 2015 until he accepted this position. He is no stranger to Florida’s unique regulatory climate as he worked at Pratt & Whitney in West Palm Beach from 2008-2015. He started his career in wastewater pollution control and later managed a project to install a fluid tracking system for chemicals and oils at DaimlerChrysler Corp. He earned his Masters’ of Science degree from Liberty University in 2009 and graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1992.
“Kathy served the Cooperative for more than 25 years and we wish her the best in her well-earned retirement,” Contreras said. “Although we will miss her institutional knowledge about our many environmental issues that she handled so well, we are pleased to welcome Grant. His solid background and reputation seem to be a great fit for the Cooperative.”
The Cooperative’s 44 grower-members produced 3.6 million tons of sugarcane during the 2017-18 harvest season yielding 400,000 tons of raw sugar grown on 77,000 acres of land primarily in Palm Beach County. As partners with Florida Crystals Corporation, we own and operate the world’s largest cane sugar refining company ASR Group International, Inc., that owns nine sugar refineries and two raw sugar mills in seven countries with the capacity to produce more than six million tons of refined sugar annually. This year the Sugar Cane Growers Cooperative of Florida and Florida Crystals Corporation partnership, launched a new value-added enterprise to our business portfolio—Tellus Products, LLC. Tellus produces annually renewable, compostable food service products such as plates, bowls and clamshells made from the fiber of the sugarcane stalk called bagasse. This earth friendly product line adds to the overall sustainability of our operations.
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Florida Agricultural Fast Facts:
-Supports 1.4 million jobs
-Generates $100 Billion annual economic impact in Florida
-Responsible for $3 billion in tax revenue for local and state government
-Florida sugar industry provides 12,300 jobs part of 142,500 nationwide jobs that rely on a strong sugar industry
-Florida sugar industry generates $3.3 billion economic impact annually