January 19, 2014

Gov. Nixon and Director of Ag Honor Ag Education Leader during Governor's Conference on Agriculture

Missouri State's Anson Elliott received the Agricultural Educator of the Year Award

Anson Elliott, head of Missouri State University's William H. Darr School of Agriculture, received high honors during the 44th Missouri Governor's Conference on Agriculture, hosted by Gov. Jay Nixon and the Missouri Department of Agriculture. During the awards banquet Saturday evening, Gov. Nixon and Missouri's Director of Agriculture Richard Fordyce recognized him with Missouri's Agricultural Educator of the Year award in front of hundreds of Missouri producers and agribusiness leaders.

"The men and women educating the next generation of Missouri agriculture are essential to the continued success of our state and our nation," said Director Fordyce. "It is key that we recognize those who serve as a strong voice for the future of Missouri agriculture, especially those whose deep commitment, spanning nearly four decades, reaches throughout our industry."

A 1972 graduate of the University of Missouri, Elliott focuses on forages and animal performance in his academic research. He has led Missouri State University's agriculture programs since 1980, balancing his responsibilities as a member of the teaching faculty and for the School's off-campus facilities with those of his administrative role. He also advises undergraduate and graduate students, as well as student organizations, within the Darr School of Agriculture.

Elliott is committed to growing opportunities for Missouri agriculture students as well as producers. In 2012, he traveled to Russia with the USDA Foreign Agriculture Service and Missouri agriculture leaders in an effort to develop and grow partnerships among educators and employers. He also continues to be involved in partnerships to grow Missouri State University's research farms and facilities, as well as to strengthen the already outstanding genetics within the University's livestock.

He is a member of Missouri's Agricultural Leaders of Tomorrow (ALOT) organization, and was honored with the group's Missouri Agriculture Leader of the Year award in 2006.

Missouri's Agricultural Educator of the Year was recognized alongside the AgriMissouri Member of the Year and the Agriculture Journalist of the Year at the 2014 Missouri' Governor's Conference on Agriculture closing banquet.

The Conference, held in Kansas City, concluded Saturday evening with a special performance by country music star John Michael Montgomery. The three-day event included seminars and panel discussions on current hot topics in agriculture, including advocacy, youth engagement and technology. Special events during the conference included the Taste of AgriMissouri reception and the Friday evening benefit auction supporting programs for youth and young professionals in agriculture.

For more information on the Governor's Conference on Agriculture and the Missouri Department of Agriculture, visit the Department online at http://www.mda.mo.gov.