FARM RASIED | FARM PROUD
Brenda Gayle Land, State Women’s Leadership Committee
Representing Liberty, Gadsden, Franklin, Wakulla, Leon, Jefferson, Taylor, Madison, Hamilton, Suwannee and Lafayette Counties.
Brenda Gayle Land serves as the District 2 Representative on the Florida Farm Bureau State Women’s Committee. The Lafayette County native was born in the small community of Day, Florida.
Land grew up on her family’s farm where they grew tobacco, watermelon, corn, beef cattle and hogs. Her career as a farm woman began at a young age helping her parents in the fields.
While in high school, she met her husband, Rod, who also grew up on a farm in Lafayette County. She went on to attend Florida State University where she earned a degree in education.
Upon graduating, she taught middle school math and science for 20 years. The Lands, along with their son, Jason, and his wife, Ashley, currently own a dairy operation as well as grow peanuts, cotton, cattle and timber.
Land has served as the Lafayette County Farm Bureau Women’s Chair for at least 20 years and has served as District 2 Representative on the State Women’s Committee since 2011. She is as an active member of Airline Baptist Church.
“I have enjoyed the relationships at both the local and state level of Farm Bureau,” she said. “I really love the projects and community involvement.”
Eight years ago, Land initiated the highly successful Ag Ventures program in Lafayette County, an activity dedicated to agricultural presentations aimed at fourth-grade students enrolled in Lafayette Elementary School each spring.
Volunteers present information on dairy, forestry, corn, poultry, peanut and cotton production. A poultry station offers hands-on learning experiences with live chickens and attendees enjoy fresh popped popcorn, cookies and milk in between sessions.
“The elementary school is conveniently located across the street from the county Farm Bureau office,” Land said. “The teachers help stop traffic and allow the kids to walk across the street to enjoy the presentations and a treat.”
The annual Food Check-Out Week event, held in February, is another one of Land’s favorite gatherings. “Collectively, counties representing District 2 donate approximately $1,000 worth of food and gift cards to the Ronald McDonald House of Tallahassee,” she said. “We look forward to it every year.”
Land’s role on the farm has changed over the years from working in the tobacco fields as a child to being the caregiver and meal maker she is today. “I am the cook and the errand girl,” she said. “I also help grow and harvest a large vegetable garden each spring.”
Land stressed the importance of educating others who may not know where their food comes from. “In this day and age there are so many people that are separated from the farm,” she said. “It is crucial that we promote and get as many people involved in agriculture as possible.”
Brenda Gayle shares one of her favorite pie recipes:
Chocolate Chess Pie
1 stick butter
3 Tbsp cocoa
1 Tbsp. cooking oil
1 cup sugar
2 slightly beaten eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup coconut
3/4 cup chopped pecans
Heat first three ingredients until smooth. Add all the rest of the ingredients. Pour into a ready-made pie crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. (This pie freezes really well).