When Mosaic Land Use Specialist David Reynolds wakes up on May 8, it won’t just be his 68th birthday. It will also be his first day of retirement after 40 years at Mosaic and its predecessor companies.

“I’m a busy guy and I had a lot to do, but I liked it,” Reynolds said. “That’s why I kept working.”

Reynolds began his career in 1984 with Agrico Chemical Company as a survey rodman, where he was responsible for maintaining and transporting the survey equipment used by the survey crews to determine land use maps. He was hired by Survey Supervisor Ron Hall.

“I was pretty good at math and surveying had always intrigued me,” he said. “By 1986, I was running the crew.”

In 2001, Reynolds got his surveyor’s license. At one point, he oversaw four Mosaic company crews and five to six vendor survey crews. Over the years, he saw Agrico eventually become IMC-Agrico and IMC Phosphates before Cargill merged with the company in 2004 to form Mosaic.

In 2008, Reynolds took the lessons he’d learned on the surveying crew to the next level when he joined the Land Management team, where he would spend the rest of his career.

“I’ve had many favorable moments and it’s hard to pinpoint one over the last 40 years,” Reynolds said. “But one that stands out is the day I received an offer to work for the land management group in Wauchula. I was able to reunite with my former supervisor (Ron Hall), and it was such a new and different environment. It was community involvement, away from the mining activity.”

In his role, Reynolds oversees Mosaic properties and their uses, including 73 rental properties, pastureland, agriculture operations and multiple parks at Mosaic’s Florida and Louisiana sites. Additionally, he manages the Fish Management Areas on Mosaic properties, including the commercial fishing program that allows licensed, commercial anglers to catch tilapia and other sport fish. Eventually, Reynolds helped turn a $365,000 annual profit for Mosaic on the commercial fishing program. He also helped find tax breaks for the company, finding up to $600,000 in savings in 2022.

Managing the properties includes accounting for the vast wildlife on Mosaic land. Reynolds supervises the honeybee apiaries, hog trapping, alligator management, cattle and crawfish farming that takes place.

“Little by little, I was given more things to do,” he said. “I didn’t mind days working out in the field or going through the swamps. I liked it.”

Reynolds also reports the different land uses to the counties where Mosaic operates: land that’s been mined; mined and reclaimed; reclaimed and released; and unmined.

Over the years, Reynolds has made a positive impact both on his department and those who worked with him.

“In my years in Land Management, David’s work has been crucial to maintaining Mosaic’s land assets,” said Bart Arrington, Senior Manager, Land Management at Mosaic. “Overseeing Mosaic’s rental homes and commercial fishing activities generate revenue for Mosaic. David also makes sure Mosaic has the appropriate ag classification, which saves the company millions of dollars in property tax annually. While I know he takes pride in this work as a conscientious employee, I think he would want to be remembered as a compassionate husband, a caring father and most importantly, the servant of God that he is.”

Reynolds plans to enjoy the first few months of retirement doing some traveling with his wife, Reba, and spend more time outdoors. Then, he’ll see what comes next.

Reynolds would encourage Mosaic employees to stay the course if they’re hoping to advance in their careers.

“Opportunities will come,” he said. “Mosaic is a really good company, so return the favor and be a good employee. There’s room for advancement, but it takes time. Learn the Mosaic way first.”

He’s grateful he was able to make his career at Mosaic.

“It’s been a great ride,” Reynolds said. “Land Management had a family-type atmosphere. I will definitely miss the people.”