FCG Board of Directors

David “Lefty” Durando,
David “Lefty” Durando

David “Lefty” Durando was born on the edge of Florida’s Everglades in Hialeah, Florida. He grew up with a love for agriculture and Florida’s natural environment. He began working as a cowboy while a teenager and began professional bull riding at age 19. He won multiple championships across the country over a period of 18 years. In the late 1970’s he turned to his true passion, and became a full-time cattle rancher. For the last 40 years he has been cattle ranching across Florida; today he and his family have cattle ranches spanning 20,000 acres.
He has combined his love of ranching with his love for Florida’s wildlife; the Durando Family Ranches are managed for native wildlife and contain high quality habitat that is dedicated towards that purpose.

He was instrumental in establishing the Everglades Headwaters National Wildlife Refuge in 2012, and has been active in lobbying on a federal and state level for conservation easement funding for the Northern Everglades. He works closely with federal and state government agencies in developing landowner incentive programs for wildlife management. He is a past Board Member for Partnerscapes, a national landowner-led organization that promotes conservation incentive programs and stronger relationships between landowners and government agencies.

Jim Strickland
Vice- Chairman

Jim has six decades of ranching experience and comes from a family that has been ranching in Florida since the 1800’s. Jim grew up ranching with his father along the west coast of Florida. When his father died in the 1960’s Jim took over the family cattle operations at the age of 17, primarily leasing land for cattle. His passion for conservation began at a young age, as increasing development pushed him farther and farther inland. Jim is the owner of Strickland Ranch and managing partner of Big Red Cattle Company and Blackbeard’s Ranch, Ranch, a 4,530 acre cow/calf operation that borders Myakka State Park and contains slough systems that feed the Myakka River and drinking water downstream. Jim is a strong advocate for Florida agriculture and conservation, and is a spokesperson for ranchers across the state on the need for conservation funding to protect Florida.

He is a past President of the Florida Cattlemen’s Association, past Chairman of the Florida Cattlemen’s Foundation, and served two terms as the Chairman of National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Political Action Committee. Jim is co-chairman of Florida Climate Smart Agriculture Work Group; their focus is agricultural land preservation to fight climate change and furthering research on the ecosystem services provided by agricultural land. Jim has been a board member of the Manatee County Farm Bureau for 28 years. He is an American Farm Bureau International Trade Think tank member and the Florida Farm Bureau International Trade Committee Past Chairman. He also sits on the board of the Florida Horse Park. Jim won the 2021 University of Florida IFAS Florida Land Steward Award, and the 2019 Florida Audubon Society Sustainable Ranch of the year. Blackbeard’s Ranch was the winner of the 2019 National Environmental Ranch of the year from National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and was named the 2018 Environmental Ranch of year from the Florida Department of Agriculture. Jim’s passion is cattle and land conservation.

Don Quincey

Born in Gainesville, Donald “Don” Quincey is a fifth-generation Florida cattleman. He began his career in law enforcement, but after two years of service, his unquestionable love for the land and raising cattle brought him back to the family’s feed store and cow-calf operation. He was actively engaged in ownership and operations from 1977 to 2003, when the store was sold.
While supporting the family business, Don also founded Quincey Cattle Company in 1992, a diversified cattle-feeding operation in Chiefland. The operation has grown in size and scope to meet fellow cattle producers’ needs, providing services to improve marketability for Florida cattle. His commitment to innovation has led to improved sustainability for the industry, with approximately 80 percent of his commodity needs coming from within 20 miles of his ranch.
An advocate for the industry and role model for future generations, Don was recently inducted into the 2023 Florida Agriculture Hall of Fame. He is a lifelong supporter of the Future Farmers of America (FFA) and a founding member of Florida Cattle Ranchers. He has held all elected officer positions with the Florida Cattlemen’s Association and has served on the board of directors for Drummond Community Bank, Florida Beef Council, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, and Cattle Fax. He has also been recognized by the University of Florida’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS) with an Award of Distinction and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association with a Leadership Award.

As a member of the Suwannee River Water Management District Board for many years, Don has been an advocate for mutually beneficial environmental and agricultural policy – seeking to bridge the gaps between production and regulation. He served as chair for nine of his twelve years at the district. During his tenure, he initiated the district’s cost-share program and was instrumental in developing a water-use monitoring program to assist agricultural stakeholders with reporting actual water use instead of estimated data.

Mark Mizell

Mark Mizell is a ranch manager, a land acquisition consultant and a realtor, specializing in the sales of agricultural properties and rural land. With a family legacy of Florida farming and fishing dating back to the 1850s, Mark is no stranger to agriculture in the Sunshine State.
Beginning with a degree in landscaping, Mark has always been connected to the land. He now works at Land South Realty, a real estate brokerage company specializing in large tracts of agricultural land in Florida. Land South Realty has sold more than 400,000 acres of land throughout the Southeast consisting of Florida ranches, timberland, commercial property, industrial property and development property.

FCG Advisory Board

  • Doyle Carlton III Roman III Ranches
  • Wes Williamson Williamson Cattle Company
  • Ken Griner Usher Land and Timber, Inc
  • Robert Harper IV: Land South Group
  • Jimmy Wohl Rafter T Ranch
  • Judge Don Hall Tiger Bay Ranch
  • Brad Phares Lazy JP Ranch
  • Woody Larson Dixie Ranch
  • Liesa Priddy JB Ranch
  • Nano Corona Corona Ranch
  • Tommy Howze Howze Ranch
  • Greg Gordon C&G Cattle
  • Cliff Coddington Longino Ranch
  • Ned Hancock Hancock Citrus