March 13, 2014
Six finalists for the Outstanding Young Farm Family (OYFF) competition were selected at the Alabama Farmers Federation’s Young Farmers Conference in Birmingham Feb. 28 - March 2.
They are John and Jennifer Bitto of Elberta in Baldwin County; Paul and Vicki Morrison of Ariton in Dale County; Colin Wilson of Hollywood in Jackson County; James and Rosa Walker of Florence in Lauderdale County; Garrett and Emily Henry of Hope Hull in Montgomery County; and Greg and Michele Edwards of Pittsview in Russell County.
Finalists will be judged on their farms in July, and the winner will be announced at the Federation’s annual meeting in December. The winner will receive a prize package valued at more than $60,000, including a new GM pickup truck, 825I John Deere Gator and use of a John Deere tractor.
The winning family will represent Alabama in the American Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers and Ranchers Achievement Award contest January 2015 in San Diego, Calif.
Along with the OYFF preliminaries, the conference included seminars on financial planning, agricultural lending, farm technology and public relations.
Nearly 300 young farm families from across the state attended the annual conference.
Andrew McCrea, a farmer and rancher from Missouri, was the keynote speaker at the March 1 opening session. He encouraged farmers to create value in their work, personal life and the lives of those they impact.
Other conference activities included a Friday night concert by the band Trotline and a live auction that raised money for the Alabama Farmers Agriculture Foundation, which funds scholarships in all 67 counties for students seeking agriculture and forestry degrees at Alabama colleges.