BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Agriculture Hall of Distinction honors this year’s inductees Thursday night. Ceremonies begin at 7 p.m. at L’Auberge Casino Hotel in Baton Rouge.
The Hall of Distinction honors those who have made significant contributions to the state’s agriculture community in farming, ranching, forestry, aquaculture, education and agribusiness. The 2018 inductees are Margie Jenkins, a nationally recognized expert on cultivating landscaping plants, and the late Pierre “Pete” Lanaux, one of the state’s most successful sugarcane farmers.
Jenkins has been a fixture in Louisiana’s landscape and nursery business for the past 60 years. In addition to her knowledge of growing hundreds of varieties of plants, her expertise includes timber harvesting, along with dairy cattle and sheep ranching. At the age of 96, Jenkins is the first woman inducted into the Hall of Distinction.
Lanaux, a sugarcane grower in St. John the Baptist Parish, farmed for more than 70 years and was still active in daily operations when he passed away on Feb. 12 at age 93. When Lanaux began his career, much of the field work was accomplished by hand or with the help of mules. Today, the farm uses a number of modern innovations, including state-of-the-art planting and harvesting equipment, satellite technology and tablet computers to coordinate operations.
The annual Hall of Distinction induction ceremony is presented by Louisiana Radio Network in cooperation with the LSU AgCenter, the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry, and the Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation. Monsanto serves as title sponsor, and First South Farm Credit is the presenting sponsor.