Ag Leaders Honored at State Fair

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ISDA Director Ted McKinney (left) presents the AgriVision Award to Bret Marsh. ISDA Director Ted McKinney (left) presents the AgriVision Award to Bret Marsh.

The Indiana State Department of Agriculture has awarded this year's AgriVision Award to two industry leaders. Bret Marsh, a member of the Indiana State Board of Animal Health, and John Hardin, vice chair of the American Farmland Trust, received the award at the Indiana State Fair for their "exemplary leadership to maximize the potential of Indiana agriculture."

The ISDA says Marsh, who is also the Indiana State Veterinarian, led the response efforts to contain and eliminate the avian influenza outbreak that hit southern Indiana this year. The virus was initially found in January on a commercial turkey farm in Dubois County and the final quarantine was lifted in May.

Hardin, who owns a gran and pork farming operation west of Indianapolis, is also a trustee of the Farm Foundation and former president of the National Pork Producers Council and former chairman of the U.S. Meat Export Federation. The ISDA touted his efforts to advocate for smart growth in agriculture by reducing the amount of farmland converted for development and enhancing productivity and environmental performance.

"Bret Marsh and John Hardin represent the very best of Indiana agriculture," said ISDA Director Ted McKinney. "We would not be where we are today as an industry without their vision, leadership and drive. I can't think of two individuals more deserving to receive this prestigious award."

Purdue Extension also announced the winners of its 2016 Women in Agriculture awards. The organization presented the Leadership Award to the Indiana FFA Foundation Director Lisa Chaudion and the Achievement Award to Sheryl Seib, owner of Seib Farm in Poseyville.

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