Rapides Farm Bureau Takes Top Parish Honor

By Allie Doise, Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation

NEW ORLEANS — The Rapides Parish Farm Bureau took home this year’s President’s Trophy, the top honor awarded by the Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation, during state’s largest general farm organization’s 95th annual convention Thursday. 

Rapides Parish President Bill Cheek accepted the award on behalf of the parish membership from Louisiana Farm Bureau President Ronnie Anderson. The award is the highest honor bestowed during the farm group’s annual convention and topped a list of award winners that included the state’s Young Farmer Achievement Award, the Outstanding Young Farm Woman award, the Excellence in Agriculture award and the Young Farmer and Rancher Discussion Meet winner.

Cheek said being selected against all the parishes eligible is something they are very proud of.

“But just to be able to represent our parish was an honor,” Cheeks said. “We’re so versatile as far as our agriculture goes. We have about everything, so we’re proud of that also.”

While Cheek is happy to have won he said it didn’t come easy.

“We’ve always tried to do our best, but it just wasn’t enough in the past,” he said. “So we went to work and got it done with time.”

One area where Rapides Parish strived to improve from past years is social media. The parish is very active in covering their events and advocating for farmers and ranchers throughout the year.

Cheek said he has no intention to stop striving to be on top.

“We’re not going to slow down,” he said. “This is what we’re supposed to do.”

 Rapides Farm Bureau delegates celebrate winning the 2017 Louisiana Farm Bureau President's Trophy.

Rapides Farm Bureau delegates celebrate winning the 2017 Louisiana Farm Bureau President's Trophy.

The President’s Trophy recognizes outstanding contributions to Louisiana agriculture by the volunteer leadership and farmer and rancher members. The parish was among 61 parish Farm Bureaus recognized for their efforts this year. The organization also recognized educators, farm journalists and young farmers from across the state.