Branstad, Northey and Gipp Recognize 88 Iowa Farm Families with Iowa Farm Environmental Leader Award

DES MOINES -- Gov. Terry E. Branstad, Iowa Sec. of Agriculture Bill Northey and Iowa Department of Natural Resources Director Chuck Gipp presented 88 Iowa farm families with the Iowa Farm Environmental Leader Award during a ceremony at the Iowa State Fair on Wednesday, Aug. 13.

“It’s no secret that Iowa has a strong agriculture industry, as our state’s farmers provide food, biofuels and fiber to families in Iowa and around the world.  Farmers take pride in the work they do and also take pride in conservation efforts, preserving and protecting our natural resources. The Farm Environmental Leader award gives us all an opportunity to recognize their efforts as exceptional leaders,” Branstad said.

The award is a joint effort between the Governor, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, and Iowa Department of Natural Resources to recognize the efforts of Iowa’s farmers as environmental leaders committed to healthy soils and improved water quality.  It seeks to recognize the exemplary voluntary actions of farmers that improve or protect the environment and natural resources of our state while also encouraging other farmers to follow in their footsteps by building success upon success.

This is the third year for the award program and to date more than 200 families have received recognition.

“Iowa is a national leader in conservation and water quality efforts and it is important that we recognize the farmers who are making a significant investment in conservation efforts and serving as example in how we can continue to better care for our air, soil and water,” Northey said.

Winners were presented a certificate as well as a yard sign donated by Monsanto and a commemorative program provided by The Nature Conservancy.  Hagie Manufacturing sponsored a recognition luncheon following the ceremony.  Bob Quinn from WHO Radio served as the Master of Ceremony.

All winners were chosen by a selection group representing both conservation and agricultural groups.

The selection group that approved the 2014 winners included Jim Gillespie from the Iowa Department of Agriculture & Land Stewardship, Bruce Trautman from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Jim Frederick from the Conservation Districts of Iowa, John Lawrence from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, Sean McMahon from The Nature Conservancy, Jeff Pape from the Iowa Farm Bureau, Jay Lynch from the Iowa Corn Growers Association, Jim Andrew from the Iowa Soybean Association, Pat Daufeldt from the Iowa Turkey Federation, and Dave Moody from the Iowa Pork Producers Association.

Check out photos from the 2014 IFELA ceremony and all the families awarded.