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Michael W. Sparks

Michael W. Sparks has served the Florida citrus industry for more than 35 years. Since June 2006, he has been Executive Vice President and CEO of Florida Citrus Mutual. In that role, he is responsible for the overall execution of the organization’s mission and strategy. Sparks manages all state and federal lobbying activities as well. He also serves as Mutual’s primary contact for other industry, educational, governmental and allied organizations in order to further the interest of the Florida citrus growers. Sparks reports to Florida Citrus Mutual’s Board of Directors.

Prior to Mutual, Sparks represented Florida’s multi-billion dollar citrus industry during nearly three decades at the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC), the state agency charged with marketing Florida citrus products. Sparks held various senior management positions at the FDOC over the years. He began his career working as an auditor for Florida’s Office of the Auditor. He holds a B.A. in Accounting and a Masters degree in Public Administration from the University of South Florida. Sparks is married and has two children and four grandchildren.

Email Mike Sparks at mikes@flcitrusmutual.com

Lauren Benning

Lauren Benning is the Assistant to the Executive Vice President. She reports directly to the EVP, and her duties include managing the EVP’s office: including mail, calls and visitors; managing the EVP’s schedule: including setting up appointments and making travel arrangements; compiling information for Mutual committee and board meetings; serving as board secretary and minute taker; and acting as a liason between the EVP and members of Mutual’s board and other citrus industry organizations. Lauren joined Mutual in 2013.

E-mail Lauren Benning at laurenb@flcitrusmutual.com