Caroline Batcheldor of Phenix City was awarded the second annual Charles Eastin Outstanding Service Award from the National Farm-City® Council Nov. 14 during Russell County’s Farm-City breakfast. The award is presented to an outstanding individual who has contributed to Farm-City activities as an advocate for accurate communications between rural and urban audiences.
Batcheldor, a retired dairy farmer from Russell County, has worked tirelessly for the local Farm-City Committee for more than 50 years.
For the past 25 years, she was directly responsible for arranging the annual Farm-City breakfast. Working with the local chamber of commerce, she helped build the event to nearly 180 participants, bringing local rural and urban citizens together.
Batcheldor also organizes the Farm-City Poster and Essay Contests for the annual breakfast, supervising student and teacher involvement and recognition.
Hugh Whaley, chairman of the National Farm-City Council, said Batcheldor’s selection is a testament to her hard work and dedication to the rural community.
“Caroline Batcheldor has worked quietly behind the scenes to make sure that the Farm-City Week concept is upheld in Russell County,” said Whaley. “This is exactly the sort of active effort the Farm-City Council wants to recognize and support.”
Alabama Farm-City Committee Chairman Jeff Helms echoed Whaley’s remarks, adding he can’t think of someone more deserving of this award.
“Mrs. Batcheldor is the embodiment of the passion, service and dedication that have made Farm-City Week a success,” Helms said. “She and her late husband, Jimmie, understood the importance of sharing the story of farming long before there were programs that taught agricultural advocacy. The Batcheldors were true pioneers in educating the public about the importance of agriculture, and their work has helped make the Russell County Farm-City Committee one of the most active and influential in the country.”
The Charles Eastin Outstanding Service Award is in honor of its namesake, Charles “Charlie” Eastin, DVM, who played a fundamental role in Farm-City activities. A National Farm-City Council board member for many years, Eastin was especially active in planning and initiating Farm-City events in the Lexington, Ky., region.
To nominate candidates for the 2013 Charles Eastin Outstanding Service Award, visit the National Farm-City Council website at FarmCity.org. Eligible nominees are persons over 25 who have actively supported national, state or local Farm-City initiatives. Candidates can be nominated by anyone active in a Farm-City program. Those completing the nomination should describe how candidates have contributed to the success of Farm-City activities and provide evidence of the impact of the individual’s actions in organizing Farm-City events. A three-member committee, including at least one member of the National Farm-City Council, will judge the applications and select the recipient.
The National Farm-City Council is a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing links between farm families and urban residents. Groups interested in organizing a local Farm-City event are encouraged to visit the National Farm-City website at FarmCity.org, or call (202) 406-3706.