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Industry veteran RJ Deakins retires from Houweling’s

With 39 years of service to the fresh produce industry, Houweling’s Group is pleased to congratulate and announce the retirement of RJ Deakins after a long, accomplished produce career in sales management.RJ-Deakins

An integral member of Houweling’s sales team since December 2011, Deakins’ history in the produce industry extends back to September of 1979 with Sunkist. Over the next 39 years his career saw him spend time at Perricone, Genova & Associates, Eco Farms, Oceanside Produce, Sun Pacific, and six years at Houweling’s Group.

At an intimate gathering of Houweling’s colleagues to celebrate his retirement, he reflected on his near 40 years in the industry, recalling fondly the many people he had met and the incredible changes he has seen since starting at Sunkist. His career has seen the rise and fall of the fax machine as an integral business tool, the advent of mobile phone and evolution of the smart phone. But the relationships forged with colleagues and customers over the years are where you can see Deakins take the greatest pride in looking back.

The company said his fostering of strong relationships and maintaining them over the years can be illustrated in his delivering the eulogy for his second grade teacher a few years back. It is incredibly reflective of his strong character and ability to maintain personal connections, and is something he carried into his professional life.

A man of many interests, Deakins is an accomplished body surfer, competing in last year’s Manhattan Beach Gillis Body Surfing Competition, and finishing third in the master’s division. He swims every day, enjoys the serenity of the golf course, can talk Lakers basketball with anyone, is an avid reader and music lover.

In retirement he will have the opportunity to continue to pursue his athletic and intellectual passions, while spending more time with his wife, Ruthie, and their adult children, Casey and Brooke. "From all at Houweling’s, his customers and former colleagues, we wish him the best and offer thanks for his dedication to our industry," the company said.