Sandee Parke-Sytsma was elected chairman in April.
Sandee Parke-Sytsma was named the first female chairman of the Florida Strawberry Festival Tuesday, April 11.
Prior to her election, the Florida Strawberry Festival’s board of directors voted to change the title of president to chairman of the board, and to call the vice president the vice chair. Additionally, the general manager is now the president. While the position titles changed, the responsibilities for each did not.
Sytsma has served on the board since 1995. She retired from Tampa Electric Company as a customer service representative. As chairman, she succeeds Dan Walden, who held the position for the last two years.
“I am truly honored to be elected to this position,” Sytsma said. “The festival is a special place to me and to my family, and I enjoy helping make decisions that ensure it’s a special place for all my families.”
The board also elected Floyd Hall to serve as the vice chair. W.D. “Dub” McGinnes was elected secretary, and Phil Waldron was elected treasurer.
"I am thrilled that our new chairman of the board is Sandee Sytsma," Paul Davis, president, said. "She is a strong leader who has always looked out for the best interests of our patrons, and the Parke family has put their heart and soul into this festival for many years."