On Monday, January 7th, over one-hundred volunteers—myself included—made their way out to the Second Harvest of the Big Bend Tallahassee warehouses on Entrepot Boulevard for a morning of community service led by Florida Department of Agriculture Commissioner-Elect Nikki Fried. A lawyer from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Fried is the first woman elected to the position of Commissioner of the Florida Department of Agriculture, and the first Democrat to hold the position in seventeen years. The event at Second Harvest on Monday was orchestrated in part to welcome Fried to the City of Tallahassee, but also to bring a large group of people together to help their fellow community members. With so many people volunteering, the work went by quickly—many of our freshly-formed “teams” had finished sorting through boxes upon boxes of food, bagging produce, and inspecting donated items well before the event’s close at noon. As Fried toured the warehouse, she was met with a picture of what true service camaraderie can be: over a hundred strangers, young and old, working together to fill a community need.
--Written by Erin Christopher