Morgan County row crop farmer Lee Nunn is Georgia’s 2020 Sunbelt Agricultural Exposition/Swisher Sweets Southeastern Farmer of the Year (FOY). Gov. Brian Kemp recognized Nunn as the Georgia FOY during a private ceremony in the governor’s office July 7. Nunn is a past president of the Morgan County Farm Bureau and currently serves as its corporate secretary/treasurer.
Nunn grows wheat, soybeans, field peas, corn and cotton on more than 1,500 acres. While Nunn grew up visiting and helping at his grandfather’s Morgan County row crop and dairy farm, it wasn’t a given that he would go into farming, and he doesn’t farm any land his family owned.
More than 12 years ago, Nunn planted his first wheat crop on 50 rented acres. He realized he loved farming and began renting more land and diversified into more crops.
“I was very humbled and shocked [to be selected], but I appreciate the honor,” said Nunn, who also owns a custom farm services business, agricultural construction and trucking businesses. “I’m on the farm all day every day, doing what I love. I’ve been thrilled to be able to do it every day.”
Morgan County’s Cooperative Extension Agent Lucy Ray nominated Nunn for the award, which is coordinated by the UGA Cooperative Extension. Some of Nunn’s notable production achievements include a 30% reduction in pesticide use, a 75% increase in conservation tillage with no-till or minimum till cropland and improved soil fertility using local poultry litter.
Nunn and his wife, Sally, have two children, Claire and Mason. In addition to his Farm Bureau activities, Nunn chairs the local Farm Service Agency Committee and serves on the county’s Extension advisory board.
Events related to the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Ag Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year have been pushed back to 2021. Nunn and his counterparts from nine other states will host judges next year and a winner will be unveiled at the 2021 Expo. State winners will not be selected in 2021.