In just a few short months, GACAA members will  begin to see a barrage of emails from the committee chairs asking for award submissions.  Often times, we hear that members don’t apply because they think they haven’t done enough or don’t understand the awards or application process.  I thought that I would take the time to explain some of this and highlight some of our past award winners.  Many times agents are doing great work that would more than make them worthy candidates for these awards, they are just unsure.

Let’s start with a committee and some awards that I am very familiar with: Animal Science.  (I know committees are confusing, too.  I will address them in a later blog post.)

I have served on the Animal Science Committee for the past 7 years.  This committee is responsible for the Georgia Beef Award (also known as the Georgia Cattlemen’s Association County Agent of the Year Award), Animal Science Programming Award,  Animal Science Equine Programming Award, and the Dairy Education for Excellence Award.   The current Animal Science Committee Chairman is Brenda Jackson from Murray County (

Georgia Beef Award

Applicants for the Georgia Beef Award are highlighting beef cattle programming, which can be adult, youth or a combination of.  Applicants provide a written statement of activities that they have helped coordinate, conduct, present or problems helped with etc.  The application also includes letters of recommendation from their PDC and their local cattlemen’s association.  In 2017, the winner was Paula Burke from Carroll County.   Her entry is below.



Applications for this award go straight to the Georgia Cattlemen’s Association and they select the recipient.  The winner receives $100, a plaque and a trip for themselves and their spouse to the Georgia Cattlemen’s Convention and Expo, where they will be recognized again at their awards program.

Animal Science Programming Award

The Animal Science Programming Award is really the broadest of the animal science awards. It can include programming with any type of livestock, either adult and/or youth.  So, if you do beef cattle, dairy, small ruminants, horse or a combination of this is the award for you.  Maybe you don’t feel that you do enough in one area, but have a little in a few species then apply! Applicants provide a written statement of activities and recommendation from their PDC.  In 2016, Greg Bowman from Gordon County received the Animal Science Programming Award. His application is below.


This award is sponsored by the Georgia Cattlemen’s Foundation and receives $250 and a plaque.

Animal Science Equine Programming Award

Applicants for this award have some programming equine production and/or 4-H horse responsibility.  They may be considered for the award by submitting a written summary of their Extension program and including a letter of recommendation from their PDC.  In 2017, Pam Sapp from Jefferson County received this award.  Her application is below.


This winner receives $200 and a plaque.  This award has been sponsored by Godfrey’s Warehouse.

Dairy Education for Excellence Award

This award recognizes excellence by a GACAA member who has developed and carried out an outstanding Extension education program in dairy production/animal waste management and/or 4-H dairy project.  There is an emphasis placed on an animal waste management component.  Award entry includes a written summary of their program and a letter of recommendation from their PDC. In 2018, Michasia Dowdy from Brooks County received this award.  Her application is below.


This award is sponsored by the Southeast Milk Producers.  The winner receives $450 and a milk bottle.  (Makes me wish I had some dairy in Bulloch County.)


I hope that seeing some of the winners of these awards encourages you to apply this fall.  Most award application are due October 1 to the respective committee chair.  I hope over the next few months to share winners from the other awards and committees as well.   Not only do these awards look good on your FAR and in your dossier but that cash prize is yours to do with as you want.  It is yours – it does not have to go to county programming.  It could go to your vacation fund – because don’t we all need a vacation!

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