CRDF Hires Interim Chief Operations Officer

Ernie NeffResearch

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The Citrus Research and Development Foundation (CRDF), tasked primarily with researching and implementing management techniques for HLB, hired a cattle expert as interim chief operations officer on March 20. John Arthington will temporarily succeed Harold Browning, who resigns at the end of March to pursue HLB control strategies with Vero Beach-based Premier Citrus ApZ.

Arthington is a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) professor and center director at the Range Cattle Research and Education Center in Ona. He has worked with the university for 20 years, primarily in beef cattle nutrition. Since October, he has been on a planned one-year special assignment with UF/IFAS Senior Vice President Jack Payne’s office. In that role, he says he has been “working primarily with relationships that we have with large agriculture producers and commodity groups that represent them.” He is slated to return to his cattle job at Ona in mid-October.

The CRDF is a non-profit corporation organized as a direct service organization of the University of Florida. Arthington says he is looking forward to the opportunity to work with CRDF and to making new relationships.

“I’m going to try to spend some time with the leadership here on the board, and certainly Harold Browning as well, to make this short-term transition to the full-time COO that they’re searching for,” Arthington says. “Certainly from what I’ve learned over the last week or so and studied a lot about CRDF, it’s an exciting organization. They’re doing a lot for the citrus growers in the state. And there’s a lot that needs to be accomplished and needs to be done.”

CRDF will conduct a search very soon for a permanent chief operations officer.

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Ernie Neff

Ernie Neff

Senior Correspondent at Large