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Californian recipient of National Ginner Award

Stan Creelman, a Tulare, Calif., ginner, was named the 2011 Horace Hayden National Cotton Ginner of the Year. He was recognized on February 11 during the 2012 annual meeting of the Memphis-based National Cotton Ginners Association in Fort Worth, Texas.

That award is presented annually to a ginner in recognition of: able, efficient and faithful service to the ginning industry; and continuing of those principles exemplified and practiced by Horace Hayden, a former NCGA executive secretary.

A leader in the California ginning industry, Creelman has served as the California Cotton Ginners Association’s chairman and was its California Cotton Ginner of the Year in 2001. He also serves on the NCGA’s board of directors.

Creelman has served as a National Cotton Council delegate and has been a NCC board member several times. He has been a longtime member of the important Joint Cotton Industry Bale Packaging Committee and currently serves as that Committee’s chairman.

Creelman grew up on a cotton and grain farm in Lemoore, Calif. After graduating from Fresno State University with a degree in agronomy and ag business in 1974, he managed a farm in Burrel, Calif. In 1978, he began his career in ginning as the assistant gin manager for J.D. Heiskell Cotton Gin becoming the manager in 1981. In 1989, he went to work for Mid-Valley Cotton Growers Gin in Tulare, Calif., where he has been the gin manager there since 1991.

In addition to managing the gin, Creelman raises cotton, corn and alfalfa. He is the past president of the Tulare Chapter of the Rotary Club and also is a member of St. John’s Episcopal Church.

Also recognized at the NCGA meeting was Joe Thomas, vice president, technology, for Lummus Corporation. He received NCGA’s Distinguished Service Award — an honor reserved for those individuals who have provided a career of distinguished service to the U.S. ginning industry.

Thomas has been closely involved with the NCGA and has served as an advisor to the Joint Cotton Industry Bale Packaging Committee and as a member of the Cotton Foundation Research Screening Committee.

After earning a mechanical engineering degree from Texas Tech University, he worked for Continental Eagle from 1973-90, and held increasing positions of responsibility, rising from intern to district engineer, and to manager of Engineering. He was employed by Lummus in 1991 as vice president of Engineering and from 2001-04 served as vice president for Design Manufacturability. In 2005 he was named to his current position.

The National Cotton Ginners Association also elected its 2012 officers during its annual meeting.

The new officers are: president - Lee Tiller, Odem, Texas; first vice president - Richard Kelley, Burlison, Tenn.; second vice president - Dwayne Alford, Yuma, Ariz.; third vice president – Levin Lynch, Bennettsville, S.C.; and chairman - Kent Fountain, Surrency, Ga. Harrison Ashley of Memphis serves as NCGA’s executive vice president.

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