During the Indiana Livestock, Forage and Grain Forum on March 16 in Indianapolis, four Hoosiers were honored for their outstanding support and promotion of Indiana agriculture.
The Beck's Beyond the Fence awards are sponsored by Beck's Hybrids of Atlanta, Ind., in conjunction with the Indiana Soybean Alliance and the Indiana corn Growers Association, and are presented annually to individuals who are advocates of farmers and the agriculture industry across the state.
"It is an honor to recognize four very deserving individuals for their service, commitment and education to Indiana agriculture," said Scott Beck, vice president of Beck's Hybrids. "Whether they are advocating for agriculture in their hometowns or workplaces, their tireless efforts continue to have a lasting impact on our agricultural community."
The four award recipients honored for their outstanding contributions to Indiana agriculture are:
• Julia Wickard of Greenfield, Ind., received the Friend of Indiana Agriculture award for outstanding contributions to agriculture by a non-farmer. Wickard is the state executive director for Indiana Farm Service Agency.
• Gary Truitt of Zionsville, Ind., received the Ag Media award for excellence in reporting about Indiana agriculture. Truitt is the founder and president of Hoosier Ag Today.
• Stephen Head of Rockport, Ind., received the Community Betterment award, which recognizes a farmer for outstanding contributions to the community through philanthropic, service, volunteerism, or leadership projects. Head is the owner/operator of a diversified family farm in Spender County.
• Dr. Bob Nielsen of West Lafayette, Ind., received the Ag Education Outreach award for his outstanding contributions to Indiana agricultural education. Nielson is a professor of agronomy and Extension corn specialist at Purdue University's College of Agriculture.
The amount of time and effort invested by these four individuals would be hard to calculate, says Josh Kirkpatrick, chairman of ISA's membership and policy committee and farmer from Veedersburg, Ind.
"Hoosier agriculture is full of people who have a passion for our industry, and it is an honor to be able to shine a spotlight on their efforts so they can be applauded for their efforts." he said.