LITTLE ROCK -- Randy Veach of Manila (Mississippi County), president of the Arkansas Farm Bureau, has been selected to receive the Honorary American FFA Degree, given to those who advance agricultural education and FFA through outstanding personal commitment.
Veach, a third-generation farmer who raises cotton, soybeans, corn, rice and wheat, is serving his fourth term as president of Arkansas Farm Bureau, the state's largest agricultural advocacy organization and an active supporter of FFA, youth development and scholarship programs. Veach previously served five years as the organization's vice president and has been a member of the state board of directors since 1999. He has traveled extensively in support of agricultural trade, including trips to China, Korea, Panama and Mexico.
Veach is a former member of the State Plant Board, served on the Rice Research and Promotion Board and was previously a board member of Cotton Inc. He farms with his son Brandon. He and wife Thelma have four grandchildren. Veach was nominated for the award by Marion Fletcher, state FFA advisor.
"The National FFA organization works to enhance the lives of youth through agricultural education," said Fletcher, who is approaching his 50th year of agricultural education. "Without the efforts of highly dedicated individuals like Randy, thousands of young people would not be able to achieve success that, in turn, contributes directly to the overall well-being of our state and nation. The Honorary American FFA Degree is an opportunity to recognize those who have made an extraordinary long-term difference in the lives of students, inspiring confidence in a new generation of agriculturalists."
Formerly known as the Future Farmers of American, the National FFA organization has 540,739 student members, all preparing for leadership roles and careers in the sciences, business and technology of agriculture. They are part of 7,489 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
The National FFA organization changed to its present name in 1988, in recognition of the growth and diversity of agriculture and agricultural education. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.