American National CattleWomen Foundation Names Peyton Chandley as 1 of 2 Scholarship Recipients
by JULIE GMITTER
Peyton Chandley is no stranger to the ag industry, and now she’s getting an unexpected boost that brings her even closer to her career goals thanks to the American National CattleWomen Foundation.
Each year, the foundation offers two $1,000 scholarships to collegiate members who are daughters, granddaughters, or nieces of current members and majoring in an ag-related field. This year, out of nine applicants, the group selected Chandley of Lake Wales as one of the scholarship recipients. The other winner is Jewel Thompson of Opelika, Ala.
Chandley is the granddaughter of ANCW member Marcia Lightsey.
Most of the funds donated have been invested with the dividends and interest going to scholarships and educational programs. Since 1992, more than $50,000 in scholarships have been applied to college tuition for the winning beef ambassadors. Educational and leadership programs at ANCW conventions also qualify for support from the Foundation.
Chandley’s family runs a beef cattle operation in Central Florida, and Chandley herself is an eighth-generation cattlewoman. As such, she has been involved in agriculture, specifically the beef cattle industry, for her entire life. In 2022, she was selected to represent Polk County as the 2022-2023 Cattlemen’s Association Sweetheart.
“My family has deep roots in American cattle ranching. Agriculture is where I know my occupation will reside, and bridging the gap between producers and consumers is on my agenda.”
In the fall, Chandley will be starting her third year at the University of Florida College of Agriculture and Life Sciences in Gainesville. She attends school full-time and lives on campus. She is majoring in agricultural communications, minoring in Management and Sales in Agribusiness, and expects to graduate in 2025.
Kristy Lage, president of the American National CattleWomen Foundation, explains that “Peyton was selected for a multitude of reasons. She is an outstanding student involved in several agricultural programs and projects, displaying leadership and dedication to the beef industry!”
As for Chandley’s future plans, although she is not exactly sure what endeavors she will take on after graduation, she knows for certain that she wants to stay in the agriculture industry, one way or another.
“Agriculture is such an essential industry for both the state of Florida and our nation,” she says. “The beef industry is one that I call home. I am so grateful for organizations like ANCW that are willing to support students like me in the field.”
For more information about the ANCW Foundation, visit ancw.org/foundation.