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ATLANTA—Chris and Jennie Simms of Sedley were named winners of this year's American Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers and Ranchers Excellence in Agriculture Award.
They were recognized Jan. 10 at the AFBF Annual Meeting. This is the second consecutive year in which a Virginia couple has won the award.
"We are very proud of our Young Farmers Program participants, and it's great to see that they are receiving national recognition for all of their hard work and accomplishments," said Virginia Farm Bureau Federation President Wayne F. Pryor. "Young farmers and other ag professionals are the key to agriculture's future, and the Simmses are utilizing modern technology to help farmers and consumers stay connected."
The Excellence in Agriculture Award recognizes young adults who do not derive the majority of their income from an agricultural operation but actively contribute and grow through their involvement in agriculture, their leadership abilities and participation in Farm Bureau and other organizations.
Chris Simms has been employed by Colonial Farm Credit for 11 years and is a relationships manager in the organization’s Commercial Loan Group. He previously served as young farmer liaison and is pursuing a master’s degree in agribusiness at Kansas State University. Jennie Simms has held administrative positions for Smithfield Foods Inc. and is a licensed Realtor.
Chris Simms is the immediate past vice chairman of the VFBF Young Farmers Committee, and both he and his wife are active VFBF Young Farmers Program participants. They also write an agricultural blog, Agtually.com, and have developed a series of geocaches called AgCache to promote Virginia agriculture.
"We feel the most important issue facing agriculture is to continue reaching out to the public through social media and other online tools," Chris Simms said.
The Simmses will receive a 2011 Dodge Ram pickup, courtesy of Dodge, and registration for this year’s AFBF Young Farmers and Ranchers Leadership Conference.
Contact Chris Simms at 804-731-5236.
If your publication or radio or television station is delivering stellar coverage of agriculture on an ongoing basis, this is the award competition to enter.