Snead Davis

Snead Young Matthews Davis, 1996 Inductee
Snead Young Matthews Davis, 1996 Inductee

Snead Young Mathews Davis and her husband, Thomas Mathews, established the first herd of registered Hereford cattle in Florida near Alachua. Davis led efforts to modernize the Florida livestock industry through the use of purebred cattle, universal health practices and state-of-the-art breeding programs.  Davis has served on the University of Florida Foundation’s Board of Directors and as vice chairman of the UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences’ SHARE Council. Her major gifts to UF/IFAS are helping to develop educational programs for young people and to advance research on Florida’s cattle and agriculture industries. Following her first husband’s death in 1947, she married A.D. Davis, the founder and president of Winn Dixie Stores, and they further developed the purebred cattle business at Santa Fe River Ranch. When she dispersed her herd in 1990, it was recognized as one of the leading foundation herds of Polled Hereford in the nation. Davis was the first woman to be inducted into the American Polled Hereford Association’s Hall of Fame and the first woman to judge at the American Royal in Kansas City.

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The Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame honors men and women who have made lasting contributions to agriculture in this state and to mentoring of our youth, who represent the future of agriculture in Florida.

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The video profiles of the inductees from 1980 through 2017 were produced by the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences at the University of Florida. More information is available at:

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