Cherokee beat out nine other counties to win The McKemie Award in the state bureau's 3,000-plus member division.
The McKemie Award is the highest honor awarded to a county farm bureau in recognition of its overall efforts to promote agriculture in their local community. The honor is a memorial to one of the organization's former presidents, W.J. McKemie.
This is the second consecutive year the Cherokee bureau has won the award for its membership division. The bureau received a $750 prize and an expense-paid trip to the 2010 American Farm Bureau Convention in Seattle, Wash., in January for winning the award.
The 2009 Cherokee bureau Board of Directors was made up of President Len Cagle, Vice President William Grizzle, Secretary Elsa Satterfield, Treasurer Bill Turner and board members Mark Cagle, Cathy Dobson, Ricky Curtis, B.J. Weeks, Aubrey Blanton, Teresa Cagle and Clint Weatherby. Grizzle is the incoming bureau president for 2010.
The bureau also won the state Promotion and Education Committee Award for its work during the past year to educate the public about the importance of agriculture. Ricky Hitt was chairman of the committee.
The committee was recognized for partnering with the Ball Ground Elementary School during the 2008-09 school year to educate the students about the impact agriculture has in their lives. The committee sponsored 10 different events throughout the school year to educate 430 students and 52 teachers about agriculture. A total of 25 volunteers spent 200 man-hours volunteering at the school.
For winning the award, the bureau can choose one paid trip to either the 2010 American Farm Bureau Promotion and Education Conference or the National Ag in the Classroom Conference. Earlier this fall, the committee won the state farm bureau's First District award for its efforts.
The bureau's Young Farmer Committee, led by Chairman Weatherby, won the state Young Farmer Committee Award.
One of the committee's major projects this year was the Safety Camp for children ages 6 through 12. Conducted in April, the camp taught 35 children safety techniques for the use of all-terrain vehicles and interacting with animals, along with electrical, fire, gun, water and severe weather safety tips. Thirty bureau volunteers made the day camp possible by spending more than 30 hours preparing for the event.
For winning the award, the bureau can send a young farmer on either the 2010 Young Farmers to Washington, D.C., Trip or to the 2010 American Farm Bureau Young Farmer Leadership Conference. Earlier this fall, the committee won the First District award for its efforts.