At its Fall Recognition Event held on Friday, October 6, the Grower Shipper Association of Central California (GSA) awarded Miles and Garland Reiter and posthumously Luis and Lucille Scattini with the E.E. ‘Gene’ Harden Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is given to individuals who made an extraordinary contribution and created a lasting legacy benefitting Central Coast agriculture.
Proceeds from the event, including both a silent and a live auction, will go to causes selected by the Reiter and Scattini Families, including the Sustainable Conservation and Special Olympics-Monterey County.
Miles’ and Garland’s father was one of the founding members of Driscoll’s, a company with a mission to continually delight berry consumers through alignment with its customers and its berry growers.
Under Miles’ guidance, Driscoll’s has become a leader in all four berry categories with year-round supply and a global expansion effort that includes the Americas, Europe, Middle East and Africa, China, and Australia. The Driscoll’s model emphasizes the success of its growers as it provides fresh and nutritious fruit for consumers.
Under Garland’s leadership, Reiter Affiliated Companies (RAC) expanded global berry production operations and partnerships with Driscoll’s, grew its farming operations and pioneered new varieties.
Garland set an example with RAC’s philanthropy efforts, including a landmark diabetes and obesity intervention program for farm worker communities in the U.S. and Mexico, as well as being the first agricultural company in the nation to provide private, primary and preventative health clinics for their farm employees.
“The positive impact that Miles and Garland have had on the berry industry in California has been tremendous and generational,” says Christopher Valadez, GSA president. “That impact has extended to benefit Central Coast communities as an economic driver from both companies and through their significant philanthropic efforts. GSA is proud to honor Miles and Garland with this award for their numerous professional and philanthropic accomplishments.”
The Scattini family’s farming history dates back over a century with a legacy started by Lucille’s parents, Jimmy and Marie King of Castroville. Together, Luis and Lucille grew Luis Scattini & Sons into a premium grower of cool-season vegetables, most notably artichokes. Today, their grandchildren operate the family farming company as well as serve in leading roles for other agricultural operations. The fourth and fifth Scattini generations continue to embody their grandparents’ values of integrity, respect and pride.
“We honor our region’s past by posthumously acknowledging the legacy of Luis and Lucille Scattini with the Harden Award,” Valadez says. “The hard work and resilience of local families, like the Scattini’s, is why the Salinas Valley continues to thrive today and reflects the importance of remembering their contributions to agriculture and their community.” — Grower-Shipper Association of Central California