New officers, board members elected during Federation’s 91st annual meeting
Jimmy Parnell of Chilton County, a fifth-generation farmer who raises timber and beef cattle, was elected president of the Alabama Farmers Federation during the organization’s 91st annual meeting in Montgomery, Dec. 2-3.
|Newly elected and re-elected board members and officers of the Alabama Farmers Federation are, seated from left, District 7 Director Richard Edgar of Elmore County; State Young Farmers Committee Chairman Jon Hegeman of Calhoun County; State Women’s Leadership Committee Chairman Faye Dial of Clay County; and District 1 Director Brian Glenn of Lawrence County; standing, District 10 Director Carl Sanders of Coffee County; Southeast Area Vice President George Jeffcoat of Houston County; Federation President Jimmy Parnell of Chilton County; District 4 Director Don Allison of Winston County; and North Area Vice President Rex Vaughn of Madison County.|
Parnell, 48, served on the Federation’s State Board of Directors from 1999-2008, was chairman of the Federation’s State Young Farmers Committee in 1997 and has served as president of the Chilton County Farmers Federation since 2006. He said it’s an honor to represent Alabama farm families as the Federation works to strengthen agriculture’s position as the state’s largest industry.
“I’m humbled by the support I received from farmers across Alabama,” Parnell said following his election. “I look forward to representing them as we work with elected officials, government agencies and other farm organizations to protect the families who grow our food and fiber. For 91 years, the Alabama Farmers Federation has worked to improve the way of life for all Alabamians. I’m excited about the opportunity to build on the foundation established by farmers who started this organization.”
Joining Parnell as new leaders of the state’s largest farm organization are Southeast Area Vice President George Jeffcoat of Houston County and North Area Vice President Rex Vaughn of Madison County. Parnell, Jeffcoat and Vaughn were elected during the Federation’s Dec. 3 business session, where 500 voting delegates from Alabama’s 67 counties cast their votes.
Other elections held during the session included board of directors seats for Districts 1, 4, 7 and 10, and chairmen positions for the state Women’s Leadership and Young Farmers committees.
Brian Glenn of Lawrence County was elected to the District 1 board of directors seat, which includes Colbert, Franklin, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Marion and Walker counties. Don Allison of Winston County was elected to the District 4 seat, a rotating position in that district. District 4 includes Blount, Cullman, Marshall and Winston counties.
Meanwhile, Elmore County row crop farmer Richard Edgar retained the District 7 seat representing Chambers, Coosa, Elmore, Lee, Macon, Russell and Tallapoosa counties. Coffee County peanut producer Carl Sanders of Brundidge was re-elected to the District 10 board seat. That district includes Barbour, Bullock, Coffee, Covington, Crenshaw and Pike counties.
Elected to one-year, ex-officio terms on the state board were Women’s Leadership Committee Chairman Faye Dial of Clay County and State Young Farmers Chairman Jon Hegeman of Calhoun County.
In addition to election of leaders for the Young Farmers and Women’s Leadership Committees (see photo on page 2), outstanding committees in both divisions were recognized.
During the Women’s Leadership Committee luncheon, Outstanding County Awards went to Division 1, Monroe County; Division 2, Talladega County; and Division 3, Calhoun County. The Most Improved County Award went to Marion County. Elmore County was recognized for collecting the most pop tabs ( 574 pounds) for the Ronald McDonald Houses in Birmingham and Mobile. Women’s Leadership Committees from Alabama collected 1,954 pounds of pop tabs this year. Money raised through the collections benefit families who stay at the houses when their children are ill.
During the Young Farmers dinner, three outstanding committees were recognized. Those counties were Division 1, Dallas County; Division 2, Blount County; and Division 3, Montgomery County.
Young Farmers reap big prizes in annual competitions
Jon and Amy Hegeman of Calhoun County were named Alabama’s Outstanding Young Farm Family (OYFF) during the Alabama Farmers Federation’s 91st annual meeting in Montgomery, Dec. 3.
|Top Photo: Amy, Ella Kate and Jon Hegeman; and Wendy Tysinger of Alabama Farm Credit and Doug Thiessen of Alabama Ag Credit.|
Bottom Photo: From left are Mike Pigg and Camp Powers, both of First South Farm Credit; Excellence in Agriculture winner Sarah Butterworth of Etowah County; Discussion Meet winner Andrew Brock of Marshall County and Discussion Meet first alternate Jon Hegeman of Calhoun County.
The Hegemans, who manage eight acres of greenhouses and established a horse training facility near their home in Anniston, were selected to compete for the award earlier this year after being named the OYFF finalist in the Greenhouse, Nursery & Sod Division. They have a 10-month-old daughter, Ella Kate.
As this year’s winner, the Hegemans received a 2013 Chevrolet or GM pickup truck valued at $35,000, courtesy of Alfa Insurance; a John Deere Gator XUV, courtesy of Alabama Farm Credit and Alabama Ag Credit; lease of a John Deere tractor, courtesy of SunSouth, TriGreen Equipment and Snead Ag dealers; a personal computer system from CCS Technology/Valcom Wireless; and an expense-paid trip the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 94th Annual Meeting in Nashville, courtesy of the Alabama Farmers Federation.
Other winners chosen in Young Farmers competitions to represent Alabama at the AFBF annual meeting were Excellence in Agriculture Award winner Sarah Butterworth of Etowah County, Discussion Meet winner Andrew Brock of Marshall County and Discussion Meet first alternate Jon Hegeman of Calhoun County.
Butterworth and Brock each received $1,000 from First South Farm Credit, as well as a plaque and an expense-paid trip to the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 94th annual meeting in Nashville, where they will compete for the national title. Hegeman received $500 from First South Farm Credit and a plaque from the Federation.
Applications for the 2013 OYFF program are due Jan. 31 and can be downloaded from AlfaYoungFarmers.org.
Contact Young Farmers Director Jennifer Himburg, email@example.com, for details.
Counties Honored With Awards For Excellence
|Nine county Federation presidents from across the state accepted the Award for Excellence during the Alabama Farmers Federation’s annual meeting, Dec. 2-3. The Award for Excellence is the highest recognition a county Federation can receive and recognizes its achievement in organization, the Young Farmers and Women’s Leadership programs, commodity work and governmental affairs. From left are David Bitto, Baldwin County; Russell Wiggins, Covington County; Phillip Garrison, Cullman County; Jerry Byrd, Dale County; Richard Edgar, Elmore County; George Jeffcoat, Houston County; Dickie Flowers, Montgomery County; Jimmy Fetner, Randolph County; and Rick Smith, St. Clair County. |
Women's Leadership Committee Elects New Leaders
|The Alabama Farmers Federation’s Women’s Leadership Division elected state officers and committee members during the annual meeting. They are, seated from left, Women’s Leadership Committee Chairman Faye Dial, Clay County; Vice Chairman Sharon Byrd, Dale County; Secretary Cheryl Lassiter, Choctaw County; and Mary Helen Benford, Chambers County; standing, from left, Debbie Freeland, Mobile County; Nell Miller, Blount County; Regina Carnes, Marshall County; Debra Bowen, Randolph County; and Kathy Anderson, Jefferson County.|
Young Farmers Committee Elects New Leaders
|The Alabama Farmers Federation’s Young Farmers Division elected state committee members and officers during the annual meeting. They are, seated from left, Colin Wilson, Jackson County, District 2; Vice Chairman Allie Corcoran, Barbour County; Secretary Heather Wright, Dallas County; and Kevin Holland, Baldwin County, South Alabama At Large; standing, State Committee Chairman Jon Hegeman, Calhoun County; Jeremy Sessions, Mobile County, District 8; Lance Miller, Blount County, North Alabama At Large; Garrett Henry, Montgomery County, District 6; Stan Usery, Limestone County, District 1; and Hop Baker, Jefferson County, District 4. |
Members raise money for Agriculture Foundation
Alabama Farmers Federation members raised nearly $21,000 for the Alabama Farmers Agriculture Foundation at the Young Farmers Silent Auction and the Ag Foundation Breakfast, Dec. 2-3. Proceeds from the fundraising events, held during the organization’s annual meeting in Montgomery, will benefit agricultural education in Alabama.
Money raised from the auction — where members bid on items from furniture and jewelry to tools and high-tech gadgets — totalled $10,448. An iPad, donated by Wells Fargo, racked up the highest bid of the night at $590.
“With the silent auction, members know their money is going to a good cause,” said Young Farmers Director Jennifer Himburg. “And they get to take home a nice item or two.”
Money raised from a buffet-style breakfast also brought in a substantial amount of money for the Ag Foundation. At $15 each, 698 tickets were sold, totalling $10,470 for the fund.
The Foundation, established in 2011, supports charitable, educational and scientific endeavors related to agriculture.
Individual Leadership Awards
|From left: Lamar Dewberry of Clay County, Sue Walters of Etowah County, Doug Sinquefield of Houston County and Karen Wyatt of Shelby County each received Individual Leader Awards during the Alabama Farmers Federation’s 91st annual meeting, Dec. 2-3. Dewberry and Sinquefield received awards for local and community service, while Walters and Wyatt received awards for outstanding service to their county Women’s Leadership committees.|
Registration available for 2013 Young Farmers Leadership Conference
Alabama Farmers Federation members interested in attending the 2013 Young Farmers Leadership Conference, Feb. 22-24 in Columbus, have until Jan. 28 to register.
Cost for registration is $230.50 per adult and $35 per child. For more information, email Young Farmers Director Jennifer Himburg, firstname.lastname@example.org.
To register, visit http://events.signup4.com/YoungFarmersConference.
Dot Williams, a member of the Jackson County Farmers Federation board of directors, died Nov. 14. She was 85.
In addition to her service with the county Federation, Williams was an active member of Stevenson Cumberland Presbyterian Church and the Bridgeport Chapter of the Order of Eastern Star.
Survivors include her husband of 66 years, Jo John; son James Norris Williams (Jeanne); siblings Hilda Jo Crabtree, Jimmy McCoy, and Stella Houser; and three grandchildren.
Memorial contributions may be made to Stevenson Cumberland Presbyterian Church, 112 College Street, Stevenson, AL 35772.