At the 1979 National Conference, the proceedings were dedicated to the Gerald Mann family for their ‘untiring efforts’ which had resulted in the continued growth of the National Watermelon Association. Over 30 years later, many of our younger members may not recognize Gerald Mann. It is my pleasure to reintroduce you to Gerald Mann and his contributions to our watermelon family.
Gerald Mann is currently a member of the Lifetime Council and has been a member of the Association for over 40 years. He operated Gerald Mann LLC in Pearsall, Texas and participated in the leadership of the Texas Watermelon Association. He is still a member of the Executive Council in Texas. From 1978 to 1979, Gerald was the President of the National Association. Following his presidency, he held various other leadership roles including Chairman of the Executive Committee in 1979.
For many of our members who have been in leadership roles, simply stating the positions Gerald held is enough information to communicate the services that he rendered. But for those of us who have not served in those capacities, it’s important to get a glimpse of the breadth of their service. In addition to the daily responsibilities of owning and operating your own business and home, the President of the National Watermelon Association must also turn their attention to oversight of the National office and its staff. They serve sacrificially, giving both their time and resources for their colleagues and competitors equally. It is their desire to see the watermelon industry flourish, which means they must keep abreast of the federal issues that affect all our members. Gerald Mann was involved – as are all our officers – in the promotion of watermelon sales and the research that positively impacts yield.
The commitment our leaders make is more than one-year in office. Once their nomination is confirmed, they step into the office of 2nd Vice President and then go on to 1st Vice President before their year as President. Following their presidency, they take on the role of National Chairman. This four-year experience binds the hearts of our officers to the Association and its members for a lifetime.
Gerald Mann followed this path and we appreciate his service. Today we again recognize the Gerald Mann family for their untiring efforts and dedication to the National Watermelon Association. Thank you Gerald.