Photo Credit: Unsplash: Theme Inn https://unsplash.com/photos/yi1YB_FubH8
She recalls memories of growing up in the orange grove, helping her father turn on water pumps to keep trees unfrozen on cold nights, and running up and down the lowboy trailer, where she now watches her three-year old son do the same.
“It’s special to see my son do something I used to love doing at his age, especially with the same piece of equipment”. -Emma Reynolds Ezell
Emma earned her bachelor’s degree in finance at Florida Southern College in Lakeland, FL. She enjoyed working as a bank teller for two years after high school, while working her way through college at the same time.
Photo Credit: Megan Winfree
After a few years as the Admirer Specialist, Emma’s uncle, the previous owner of the harvesting company needed some help on the harvesting side. She then stepped in to help coordinate the harvesting, including managing harvesting trucks, where the fruit is going, when to pick, and state regulation. In 2019, Ezell’s uncle and father started to think about retirement, which led Emma to purchase and create Reynzell Harvesting company. Emma talked about how “being a family business, time marches on”.
“I get to be in the field, with the trees, who don’t talk back and, it’s peaceful and quiet and reflective. It can be stressful too when you don’t know what’s going on with the tree and it can’t talk back and tell you what’s going on”. –Emma Reynolds Ezell
Emma is also highly involved in her community and takes a lot of pride in being able to give back to the industry that raised her. She sits on the Highlands Country Citrus Association Board of Directors and the Natural Resource Advisory Council for Highlands County as well as a member of the Highlands County Farm Bureau.
You might have seen Emma in your local grocery store, as she is represented on the side of Florida’s Natural Orange Juice carton around the state. This honor was given to her through the Farm Bureau Leaders Program, she met someone who worked for Florida’s Natural. During their rebranding, they were looking for more diversity and asked Emma. She said, “it’s kind of all in who you know”.
When asked what her favorite orange juice brand, Emma replied “one straight off the tree and from the source!” She noted that it must be cold and have pulp!
Emma resides in Lake Placid, Florida with her husband, Eric, and two children, Eli and Eloise. Emma plans on continuing the family business, and eventually pass it along to her children. Emma’s love for community and pride in her roots is unmatched, and she is proud to be a part of the Reynolds family.
Photo Credit: Tomi Vadasz https://unsplash.com/photos/628SCbYcPIc