News Agricultural Leaders Inducted Into Hall Of Honor

Agricultural Leaders Inducted Into Hall Of Honor

Agricultural Leaders Inducted Into Hall Of Honor
March 29, 2005 |

Three Alabama agricultural leaders were inducted into the Alabama Agriculture Hall of Honor, and two others were honored posthumously, during a banquet Feb. 15 in Auburn.This year’s inductees were James Cook, former chairman of the Alabama Farmers Federation State Dairy Committee; Ann Barr, former state 4-H program leader for girls; and Gerald Bailey, former live production manager for Gold Kist Inc. Hoyt Adair, a former member of the Federation’s State Horticulture Committee was honored posthumously with the Pioneer Award as was former Auburn University Horticulture Professor Henry Orr. The Hall of Honor is sponsored by the Auburn University Agricultural Alumni Association.A native of Conecuh County, Cook was instrumental in forming Associated Milk Producers, a cooperative that helped stabilize the milk market and increase the price dairy farmers received for their products. He later served on the boards of directors for Dairy Incorporated, Mid-America Dairymen and ultimately Dairy Farmers of America. Cook also was appointed to represent five states on the National Dairy Board by both Democratic and Republican administrations. He was president of the Conecuh County Farmers Federation for 25 years and was a member of the Federation state board for six years.Barr served as the state 4-H leader for girls for 33 years until her retirement in 1984. A week after her retirement, Barr was asked to work as a consultant for the National 4-H Council in Washington D.C.–a position she held for the next 10 years.
Barr is a member of the National 4-H Hall of Fame. Through her devotion, Barr impacted the lives of thousands of young people. She has been quoted as saying, “I never wanted anything for myself, just for the boys and girls.” A native of Winston County, Bailey served in the Korean War and ran a logging business before accepting a job in 1964 with the Pillsbury Company’s poultry operation in Jasper. Bailey eventually became field operations manager for Gold Kist, which bought the Pillsbury operation in 1971.
Bailey served as president of the Alabama Poultry and Egg Association, chairman of Auburn University’s Research Council and as a member of the Auburn University President’s Agricultural Advisory Committee. He also worked to secure funding for the poultry research farm in Auburn, and he led the coalition to build the new poultry science building.A graduate of Auburn University and decorated Vietnam War veteran, Adair operated a nationally recognized fruit orchard in Lawrence County.Growing 800 different varieties of apples, Adair took a special interest in preserving antique varieties and introducing new and exotic fruits to Alabama. Adair served on the boards of directors of the Lawrence County Farmers Federation, the State Farmers Market Authority, and the Alabama Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association. He also served on the advisory board of the Horticulture Department at Auburn University. In Adair’s honor, an endowment has been established in the Auburn University Horticulture Department to recruit outstanding graduate students in the area of fruits and vegetables.Orr was a native of Opelika, Ala. His career as a horticulture professor at Auburn University spanned 34-years, during which he established himself as an expert on flower arranging and landscape design, and as a master of native and ornamental plants. Orr’s research covered such topics as chrysanthemum production and use of ornamentals on highway right’s-of-way to reduce erosion. In 2001, several former students established the Henry P. Orr Endowed Fund For Horticultural Excellence, which will be used to enhance the horticulture students’ education at Auburn University.Prior to the Hall of Honor banquet, Alfa Farmers Publications Director Jeff Helms was elected president of the Auburn University Agricultural Alumni Association. Helms is a native of Jackson County and a 1992 graduate of Auburn University.

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