FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jennifer Whittaker, firstname.lastname@example.org
GEORGIA FARM BUREAU HONORS NASHES WITH DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD
MACON, Ga. – Georgia Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall presented Upson County Farm Bureau (UCFB) members Bob and Betty Nash with the Georgia Farm Bureau Distinguished Service Award during the organization’s 72nd annual convention on Dec. 5. This award is the highest honor Georgia Farm Bureau gives its volunteer leaders and is designed to recognize volunteer Farm Bureau leaders who have made outstanding contributions to Farm Bureau and agriculture over a long period of time.
“Bob Nash was serving as Georgia Farm Bureau president when my wife Bonnie and I first became involved with Farm Bureau as young farmers. Bob and Mrs. Betty are the gold standard every farm couple should strive to be,” Duvall said. “The Nashes have worked side by side to promote agriculture for the 63 years they have been married. Throughout their journey they served on the county, district and national level of Farm Bureau, worked to establish the Georgia Cattlemen’s and Cattlewomen’s Associations and continue to support 4-H and FFA. Georgia Farm Bureau prides itself on being a grassroots organization, and the Nashes are the perfect example of this concept in action.”
Both of the Nashes grew up on farms in Oklahoma and graduated from Oklahoma A&M. Mr. Nash earned a bachelor’s degree in animal husbandry and a master’s degree in animal nutrition. Mrs. Nash received a bachelor’s degree in home economics. Mr. Nash served as a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army in World War II. Prior to moving to Georgia, Mr. Nash was the Southeastern field representative for the American Hereford Journal.
The Nashes have been Farm Bureau members since moving to Georgia in 1957. They have been active members for 52 years. Mr. Nash has served as a county director for the Coweta, Lamar and Upson County Farm Bureaus and is a past president of the Lamar and Upson Farm Bureaus.
Mr. Nash served as a Georgia Farm Bureau district director from 1974 to 1978 and as Georgia Farm Bureau president from 1978 until 1988. He served as treasurer of the Upson County Farm Bureau from 1989 to 1993 and currently serves on the board.
As GFB president, one of Mr. Nash’s biggest concerns was membership - both improving member services and increasing membership. He was instrumental in the development and building of Georgia Farm Bureau’s current state office in Macon and worked to expand the organization’s commodity department. Mr. Nash served on the American Farm Bureau Board of Directors for 10 years and participated in AFBF trade trips to Japan, China, Switzerland and England. He served on the U.S. Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee on Trade for Poultry and Eggs from 1981 to 1988 at the appointment of U.S. Secretary of Agriculture John Block.
Through the years, Mrs. Nash has coordinated, hosted and assisted with numerous county, district and state Farm Bureau events such as Ag in the Classroom activities, farm tours, local meetings and health fairs. Mrs. Nash is well known for her refreshments and decorating skills.
In nominating the Nashes for the award, UCFB President Brian Johnston wrote, “You don’t go to many events without seeing Mr. Bob and Mrs. Betty there. Our Upson County Farm Bureau and agricultural community are so much stronger with Mr. Bob and Mrs. Betty’s assistance and support. They have truly dedicated their whole lives to help spread the good news about agriculture and help create programs that have strengthened agriculture and Farm Bureau. They have and still do spend many hours to help others understand where their food and fiber come from. ”
In addition to their Farm Bureau activities, the Nashes have held various leadership positions in the Georgia Cattlemen’s and Cattlewomen’s Associations and numerous cattle and livestock organizations. They have served as 4-H volunteer leaders for 52 years and opened their farm to numerous 4-H and FFA events.
“The Nashes’ roots go way back in the cattle industry. He was the first executive vice president of the Georgia Cattlemen’s Association and Mrs. Betty was the office secretary.
They are always supporting beef promotion projects. If they say they are going to help, you can count on them to follow through,” Upson County Extension Agent Wes Smith wrote in his recommendation letter nominating the Nashes for the award.
The Nashes are members of the Thomaston-Upson Chamber of Commerce and last year the organization presented the couple the Thomaston-Upson Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award.
“Although the Nashes are very involved with keeping agriculture at the top of Chamber members’ minds, I think one of the most important organizations they have been involved with is the Partners in Education through the Thomaston-Upson County School System,” Thomaston-Upson Chamber of Commerce President Lori Showalter Smith wrote in her recommendation letter. “The Nashes believe that children need to be exposed to where their food and fiber comes from and because of their belief, thousands of students have toured their farm and were taught that meat and vegetables do not just magically appear on the grocery store shelves, that the process begins with a farmer working hard to make sure the food products we all find so comforting arrive to us in a healthy and safe manner.”
Each of the Nashes have received numerous awards for their volunteer service, some of which include: Georgia Cattlemen’s Hall of Fame, Georgia CattleWoman of the year, American National CattleWomen’s Educator Award and Progressive Farmer Magazine’s Man of the Year in Service to Georgia Agriculture.
“I would not be where I am today professionally if it had not been for the commitment to agriculture that these individuals made,” Mack Crawford, director of the Georgia Public Defender Standards Council, wrote in his recommendation letter. “They unselfishly afforded me and many others opportunities which were planted as seed in many aspiring young farmers and these investments have now matured into the agriculture leaders of this state.”
The Nashes are members of Barnesville First Methodist Church where they have both held numerous administrative positions and Mrs. Nash taught Sunday school for many years. The Nashes have three children: daughter, Cynthia and son-in-law, Steve Douglas of The Rock, son Clifford and daughter-in-law Laverne Nash of Moultrie and son Charles and daughter-in-law Alexis Nash of Chicago, seven grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren and step great-grandchildren. The couple own Nash Cattle Farm located at The Rock, Ga., where they raise commercial cattle and co-operate D&N Livestock Services, Inc. with their daughter and son-in-law.
Founded in 1937, Georgia Farm Bureau has county chapters in 157 of Georgia’s counties. Its volunteer members actively participate in local, district and state activities that promote agriculture awareness to their non-farming neighbors. GFB also has 20 commodity advisory committees that give the organization input on issues pertinent to the major commodities grown in Georgia.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo of all the award winners.
(CUTLINE TO ACCOMPANY PHOTO: Pictured from right, Georgia Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall presents the Georgia Farm Bureau Distinguished Service Award to Betty and Bob Nash during the 72nd Annual GFB Convention held Dec. 5-7 on Jekyll Island.)