Women on the Front Lines of Leadership at Booth Ranches

By Stephanie Metzinger T he world is currently facing a employee. It is during these high stress situations that a company’s workforce either flourishes or falters. Luckily for Loren Booth, she had the right players in place before coronavirus infiltrated the world. These employees are leading the charge in adapting the company’s protocols to prevent and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Among them, many are women. “It’s interesting how different people act and communicate during hard times,” said Booth, president/owner of Booth Ranches. “At Booth Ranches, we value people who are forward thinkers and good team players. The ones who show up, step up and volunteer to solve issues when they arise. This crisis has brought to light the employees who are there to find solutions.” When most Americans were gearing up to “shelter in place,” Booth tasked her staff with flipping typical contact- heavy activities into “social distanced” possibilities. This would allow Booth Ranches to continue to provide safe and nutritious citrus varieties for the nation, while keeping the farm’s 600 workers safe. Stacy Thompsen, who leads the IT pandemic that has severely shaken every industry, company and Department for Booth Ranches, stepped up to the plate. Thompson and her team of three rolled up their sleeves to help all employees rapidly and efficiently transition from an in-person office setting to a work-from-home model. Though Booth Ranches was an early adopter of going paperless, Thompson expedited the process throughout the entire organization within weeks in an effort to maximize social distancing and prevent any spread of the virus. “When truck drivers arrive, they hand us a piece of paper. When bins leave the field or packing house, there is an exchange of paper. There’s paper involved in many aspects of farming, and Stacy quickly figured out how to make it all

paperless,” said Booth. In addition to helping the company still run like a well-oiled machine during the pandemic, the commitment of Booth’s leadership team to the employees is unmatched. Alex Rios, the human

resources manager at Booth Ranches, works 13-hour days to ensure that the needs of all employees—from the field to sales to the packinghouse—are met, while the company’s chief financial officer (CFO) vigorously fought to overcome COVID-19


MAY | JUNE 2020

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