DAVIDSONVILLE, Md. — The Maryland Farm Bureau held its 102nd Annual Convention from Dec. 3-5 at The Clarion Resort Hotel in Ocean City with over 500 voting delegates, members and guests in attendance.
“Our members reflected on our accomplishments and planned for the next year of promoting and protecting Maryland agriculture and rural life,” said Chuck Fry, president of MFB. “We welcomed new gave thanks to outgoing county Farm Bureau Presidents and state Board members.”
The three-day convention featured presentations, awards, elections and discussions to educate members on Farm Bureau activities and the agricultural industry. MFB President Chuck Fry, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen, Nationwide Insurance Board member Dan Kelley, Maryland Secretary of Agriculture Joe Bartenfelder, Associate Director of University of Maryland’s College of AGNR Jim Hanson and Miss Maryland Agriculture Mackenzie Underwood addressed the members. Comedian and farmer Jerry Carroll gave the keynote address about the importance of growing up on a farm and having “Dirt in My DNA.”
A panel consisting of William Layton from the United Soybean Board, Jason Scott from the U.S. Wheat Associates and Ryan Bennett of the National Milk Producers Federation talked with the MFB Young Farmers Committee about foreign trade and open world markets for agriculture. Jenny Rhodes, farmer and UMD Extension Agent in Queen Anne’s County, spoke to the MFB Women’s Leadership Committee about her background and career as a farmer and food labeling.
Breakout sessions were held Monday on topics from farm succession planning and farm trucking to wildlife management and agricultural law. During the business sessions on Monday and Tuesday, Farm Bureau voting delegates from all 23 counties reviewed the organization’s policy on issues pending before government. The 2018 policy positions that were adopted by the delegate body will provide direction for the Farm Bureau lobbying team in Annapolis and Washington.
Awards were presented to the following members and Nationwide agents at the annual convention:
- 2017 Young Farmer Discussion Meet: Jessica Flores of Wicomico County
- 2017 Young Farmer Collegiate Discussion Meet: Gabrielle Cory of St. Mary’s County
- 2017 Silver Bowl Awards: Calvert County and Anne Arundel County
- 2017 Distinguished Service to Farm Bureau Award: Earl Griffith of Anne Arundel County
- 2017 DNR Farmer of the Year: Ralph and Darlene Ball of Harford County
- 2017 Nationwide Farm Agencies: William Staples Insurance Agency Inc. in Wicomico County and Nelson Insurance in Somerset County
See attached document for more details about the awards and recipients. Contact Katie Ward for more photos of the award winners, speakers and events.
The 103rd Annual Maryland Farm Bureau Convention will be held from Dec. 2-4, 2018, at The Clarion Resort Hotel in Ocean City, Md.
— Maryland Farm Bureau