FLORIDA CITRUS HALL OF FAME (Background)
The Florida Citrus Hall of Fame was established in 1962 to pay tribute to those who have made significant contributions to the Florida citrus industry. Seventeen nominees were inducted the first year and members of the industry have been inducted each year since. A committee representing various facets of the industry and all production regions of the state was created to select deserving recipients and stage the annual presentations. Selection committee members are elected for five-year terms and comprised of people who were actively involved in the citrus industry – many of whom are also Hall of Fame inductees.
The Florida Citrus Hall of Fame conducts the annual induction ceremonies during a luncheon held in Lakeland every March at Florida Southern College. Both The Florida Department of Citrus and Florida Citrus Mutual co-sponsor the luncheon ceremonies, with The Florida Citrus Hall of Fame Selection Committee coordinating the event.
The Florida Citrus Hall of Fame and Florida Southern College are in a unique partnership to honor and preserve the history of our inductees and our heritage. The college has constructed the Sara D. and L. Kirk McKay, Jr. Archives Center, which now houses the Florida Citrus Hall of Fame display along with the State of Florida Citrus Archives, Florida Southern College’s Center for Florida History, the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives and the Florida United Methodist Conference Archives.
The Hall of Fame provides funding to enable Florida Southern College students and faculty to research and supplement the information on all of the Citrus Hall of Fame inductees, providing public access via both the school and through our web site: www.FloridaCitrusHallofFame.com In addition, materials in the Florida Citrus Archives are being digitized and catalogued, and we have created a digital catalog and database of Florida Citrus Crate Labels from several private collectors that will eventually be the largest collection of Florida labels in the world. Other projects currently underway include an Oral History Presentation containing video interviews with prominent citrus industry pioneers, a speakers’ program, the Miss Florida Citrus Competition and educational outreach efforts to schools and community events.
These programs are made possible through monies from the Florida Citrus Hall of Fame’s permanent endowment fund, which supports six annual student fellowships under the direction of Florida Southern College faculty. The fellowships are: The D. Victor Knight, Sr. Fellowship, Frank S. Bouis Family Fellowship, Frank S. Bouis Fellowship, John M. Kennedy Family Fellowship, John M. Kennedy Fellowship and The Florida Citrus Hall of Fame Fellowship. Thank you for your interest and we hope you will join us in supporting the accomplishments of industry leaders and our quest to make their contributions known to future generations for many years to come.