What is in this article?:
• As a result of his success as a beef cattle and row crop farmer, Andy Wendland has been selected as the 2011 Alabama winner of the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year award.
• Wendland now joins eight other state winners from the Southeast as finalists for the award.
Swisher International, through its Swisher Sweets cigar brand, and the Sunbelt Expo are sponsoring the Southeastern Farmer of the Year awards for the 22nd consecutive year.
Swisher has contributed some $844,000 in cash awards and other honors to southeastern farmers since the award was initiated in 1990.
Previous state winners from Alabama include: Ricky Wiggins of Anderson, 1990; George Kiser, Sr. of Foley, 1991; Allen Bragg of Toney, 1992; Sykes Martin of Courtland, 1993; David Pearce of Browns, 1994; Glenn Jones of Blountsville, 1995; Raymond Jones of Huntsville, 1996; Dan Miller of Greensboro, 1997; Homer Tate of Meridianville, 1998; Eugene Glenn of Hillsboro, 1999; George T. Hamilton of Hillsboro, 2000; Bert Driskell of Grand Bay, 2001; Charles Burton of Lafayette, 2002; Bruce Bush of Eufaula, 2003; John B. East of Leesburg, 2004; James A. Wise of Samson, 2005; Glenn Forrester of Columbia, 2006; Billy Gilley of Holly Pond, 2007; Lamar Dewberry of Lineville, 2008; David Wright of Plantersville, 2009; and Shep Morris of Shorter, 2010.
Alabama has had one overall winner with Raymond Jones of Huntsville being selected as the Southeastern Farmer of the Year in 1996.
A distinguished panel of judges will visit the Wendland farm, along with the farms of the other eight state finalists, during the week of Aug. 1-5.
The judges for this year include Jim Bone, a retired manager of field development for DuPont Crop Protection from Valdosta, Ga.; Charles Snipes, a retired Mississippi Extension weed scientist who is president and research scientist with Stoneville R&D, Inc., from Greenville, Miss.; and John McKissick, a longtime University of Georgia Extension ag economist from Athens, Ga.