Tag Archives: awards

Four industry ambassadors to be inducted into Virginia Livestock Hall of Fame

head shots of the four inductees

(From left to right top) Dwight E. Houff, Robert W. Manly. (From left to right bottom) Richard G. Saacke, Max James Tappero.

Four distinguished industry leaders will be inducted into the Virginia Livestock Hall of Fame at 10 a.m., Sept. 24, at the Alphin-Stuart Livestock Teaching Arena on Virginia Tech’s campus. The public is invited to attend this free event.

The ceremony features the unveiling of the honorees’ portraits, which will hang in the arena gallery alongside those of 55 other prominent industry leaders who have been recognized for their contributions to the Virginia livestock industry.

“The Livestock Hall of Fame allows Virginia’s beef, sheep, dairy, pork, and horse industries to recognize those who have made outstanding contributions to the commonwealth’s livestock industry,” said Ike Eller, a retired Virginia Cooperative Extension animal scientist who chairs the hall of fame committee.

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Sustainable farmer, advocate receive conservation award from Virginia Cooperative Extension

Mark Schonbeck (left) and C.J. Isbell (right) were recognized by Virginia Cooperative Extension and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service for their commitment to sustainability and soil health.

Mark Schonbeck (left) and C.J. Isbell (right) were recognized by Virginia Cooperative Extension and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service for their commitment to sustainability and soil health.

BLACKSBURG, Va., Feb. 8, 2016 – Virginia Cooperative Extension and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service recently presented Mark Schonbeck and C.J. Isbell with the Soil Health and Water Quality Award for their contributions to conservation in the state of Virginia.

The award was created in partnership between Extension, USDA-NRCS, and the Virginia Soil Health Coalition, and is sponsored by Houff Feed and Fertilizer. The award commemorates former Houff salesman, Carl G. Luebben, who was known for his prolific soil health research, papers, and mentorship of conservation professionals.

Schonbeck and Isbell received their plaques from Duane McAllister of Houff Feed and Fertilizer and Dan Luebben, son of the award’s namesake, at the Virginia Farm-to-Table Conference in Weyers Cave, Virginia.

The senior Luebben, who passed away in October of last year, previously served on the Virginia Farm Bureau Board, the Shenandoah Resource Conservation and Development Council, and the Shenandoah Valley Soil and Water Conservation District.

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Virginia Agriculture Leaders Obtaining Results selected for national award

he Virginia Agriculture Leaders Obtaining Results (VALOR) program in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Virginia Tech received the 2015 National Association of Agricultural Educators Outstanding Postsecondary/Adult Agricultural Education Program Award.

The award was presented at the National Association of Agricultural Educators annual convention in New Orleans on Nov. 18. Virginia Agriculture Leaders Obtaining Results is one of only four programs nationwide that received the 2015 award.

The program is a two-year fellowship for adults working in agriculture who want to develop their communication, problem solving, and critical thinking skills, in addition to broadening their knowledge of global and local agriculture. The mission of Virginia Agriculture Leaders Obtaining Results is to develop leaders who can effectively engage all segments of the Virginia agriculture community to create collaborative solutions and promote agriculture.

The program is housed in the Department of Agricultural and Extension Education and receives funding from participant fees, the college, and Virginia Cooperative Extension, as well as from philanthropy from individual donors, industry organizations and, agribusinesses. Its success stems from raising participants’ awareness of the diversity and profitability of agriculture in Virginia.

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Tobin Smith Recognized as Connect with Kids Champion at Virginia Cooperative Extension Annual Arlington/Alexandria Showcase

The Arlington Partnership for Children, Youth and Families (APCYF) lauded Tobin “Toby” Smith as a Connect with Kids Champion during the Arlington-Alexandria Virginia Cooperative Extension annual breakfast and showcase last week.

Connect with Kids Champions are people who go out of their way to develop and maintain positive, supportive relationships with young people. Each fall and spring, APCYF invites the Arlington community to nominate individuals, groups, businesses, and non-profit organizations as Champions because of the relationships they’ve built with young people.

Smith, vice president for Policy, Association of American Universities, volunteers with Arlington 4-H Youth Development. He has connected with kids since 1988 using nature and fishing as the hook. Starting with a 4-H Gardening Club for children of refugees from Southeast Asia, he later formed a 4-H Fishing Club for ten children ages 8-10 and worked with that group until they graduated from high school.

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Donald Turner named 2015 Virginia Farmer of the Year

Michael Parrish and Donald Turner

Dinwiddie County Unit Coordinator and Senior Virginia Cooperative Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent Mike Parrish (left) and Swisher Sunbelt Farmer of the Year Donald Turner in one of Turner’s tobacco fields (right).

Virginia Cooperative Extension has recognized Donald Turner of Turner Family Farms in North Dinwiddie, Virginia, as the 2015 Virginia Farmer of the Year. He joins nine other state winners as finalists for the overall award which will be announced on Tuesday, Oct. 20 at the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Ag Expo farm show in Moultrie, Georgia.

Turner has farmed for 41 years and is currently a diversified row crop farmer. This past year, he farmed 1,166 acres of cropland plus another 165 acres in timber for a total of 1,331 acres.

He also produced about 4,000 bales of wheat straw last year.

“We bale enough straw to deliver what the market requires,” Turner said in an interview with Sunbelt Ag Expo.

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