The current chief executive officer of the Land O’ Lakes is a veteran of the company, but had never run a business, until 1976. She started her career in 1952, cleaning toilets for the company.
The company also lists Louis Grundberg as its C.E.O. from 1922 to 1944.
Beth Ford has been CEO since July 2007, the year she took over for Louis Grundberg, who had served as interim CEO.
In a company history and vision posted online on behalf of Land O’ Lakes, Ford describes how important the day-to-day operations are.
“Our family owns 30 percent of the land and we partner with customers who own 50 to 75 percent and build beautiful homes,” she wrote. “They are big and important parts of the business. Our customers include 17 companies: 11,500 showroom square feet, eight lots of land, four lane paved highway and 75 miles of home state lines.
“We continually monitor and evaluate the economy, sales, and customer needs. We have limited any production of homes for the past 12 months.”
Pat Spencer’s book
A Time To Toast: Bratty Alabama Rebrands After & Before Revolt is “a time-lapse panorama of just how the titans of the state’s original brands — Land O’ Lakes, Duke, Byrne and Merryhill — succeeded (or failed) in the years since going private,” as Publishers Weekly described the book.
Spencer, who worked at Land O’ Lakes for two decades, began researching it in 1999. According to Publishers Weekly, part of her research centered on her brother, Pat Spencer, who worked in public relations at the time. Pat Spencer’s daughter is Elizabeth Trauman, senior press secretary to Gov. Kay Ivey.
“One thing that stuck with her all along was a question she asked her brother about the plans for the Thanksgiving Day “Brat Fight,” an annual tailgate party in Decatur after the University of Alabama-Auburn football game,” according to Publishers Weekly.
“She told Pat that she didn’t think it would work because the school’s president, David Boren, was opposed to the beer sales that he wanted to establish during the game,” Publishers Weekly wrote. “Pat said his boss thought the booze sales would ruin the ‘Hallmark’ feel of the event.”
A spokeswoman for Gov. Kay Ivey did not immediately return phone calls about Spencer’s book.
Click here to get more from WSFA-TV.