Ms. Mitzi Perdue
2nd Gen, The Sheraton Family and Perdue Chicken; Business Woman, Author, Professional Public Speaker
Mitzi Perdue is a professional public speaker who talks on How to Make Your Family Business Thrive.
Mitzi Perdue draws on the experience of her family of origin, the Henderson Estate Company which dates back to 1840 and was the forerunner of the Sheraton Hotels (her father was co-founder of the chain). She also looks to her marital family (she’s the widow of Frank Perdue from Perdue Farms) that began in 1920.
As a businesswoman herself, Mitzi founded CERES Farm in 1974. Her sons manage the company today. CERES is a major supplier of wine grapes to Joel Gott, Robert Mondavi, Kendall Jackson, Gallo, McManis, Sutter Home, Diageo, and the Wine Group.
Mitzi is an honors graduate of Harvard and holds an MP from and the George Washington University, is a past president of the 35,000 member American Agri-Women and was one of the U.S. Delegates to the United Nations Conference on Women in Nairobi. While there, she participated in the historic 1985 repeal of the “Racism equals Violence” resolution.
Most recently, she’s authored HOW TO MAKE YOUR FAMILY BUSINESS LAST, Techniques, Advice, Checklists and Resources for Keeping the Family Business in the Family. She’s also the author of TOUGH MAN, TENDER CHICKEN, Business and Life Lessons from Frank Perdue The book made #5 on Amazon’s Business Biographies, out of a field of 20,000. She’s also the author of, I DIDN’T BARGAIN FOR THIS, her story of growing up as a hotel heiress.
She was a syndicated columnist for 22 years, and her weekly environmental columns were the most widely syndicated environmental column in the United States. Her columns were distributed first by California’s Capitol News and later, by Scripps Howard News Service, to roughly 420 newspapers. For two years she was a Commissioner on the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science.
Mitzi also produced and hosted more than 400 half hour interview shows, Mitzi’s Country Magazine on KXTV, the CBS affiliate in Sacramento, California. In addition, she hosted and produced more than 300 editions of Mitzi’s Country Comments, which was syndicated to 76 stations. Her radio series, Tips from the Farmer to You, was broadcast weekly for two years on the Coast to Coast Radio Network.