Clewiston, FL – U.S. Sugar today announced its Executive Vice President Kenneth W. McDuffie has assumed the role of President and Chief Executive Officer, succeeding Robert H. Buker, Jr. McDuffie has more than 30 years of experience in agriculture leadership roles involving agricultural operations, precision agriculture technology, research, business strategy and finance.
“Given Ken’s decades of experience leading efforts to modernize U.S. Sugar’s farming and technological infrastructure, there is no better choice to lead our growing company into the future,” said Ridgway White, Chairman of the U.S. Sugar Board of Directors. “Under Ken’s leadership, U.S. Sugar’s agricultural operations department has become one of the most efficient, sustainable and productive departments at any agricultural company in the world. Our Company is incredibly fortunate to have him at the helm.”
“I am humbled to have the opportunity to lead U.S. Sugar at such an exciting time, when we are harnessing more technology to grow food more sustainably than ever before,” said McDuffie. “I look forward to building on the successes we have achieved under Bob Buker’s leadership and continuing to ensure U.S. Sugar remains a market leader in safely and efficiently producing sugar, sweet corn, green beans and other food crops for American families.”
McDuffie, a Clewiston native, most recently served as U.S. Sugar’s Executive Vice President, a position he has held since 2021. In this role, McDuffie assisted the former President & CEO in all strategic and political matters as well as oversight of U.S. Sugar’s agricultural operations, including citrus agriculture and research, railroad operations, Rouge River Farms (locally-grown vegetables) and industry/grower relations.
From 2005 until 2021, McDuffie served as the Senior Vice President of Agricultural Operations. McDuffie first joined U.S. Sugar in 1992 and has held several positions with the Company, first starting out as a farm assistant. As part of his tenure, McDuffie led efforts to modernize U.S. Sugar’s agricultural operations and develop one of the most technologically advanced and productive harvesting fleets in the nation. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Florida State University.
McDuffie and his wife Melissa (Dusty) have two sons, Nick and Samuel, who are currently enrolled in college. His third son Landon and daughter-in-law London live in Stuart with grandson Preston.
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