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Newsmakers in business, Dec. 21
GFB state winners
The Georgia Farm Bureau Federation honored county Farm Bureaus for promoting agriculture and individual members for personal achievement during the organization’s 77th annual convention. Georgia Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall (standing, back row, far right) congratulates the 2014 GFB award recipients: Front row, from left, Trisha Lastly of Madison County; Brittany Ivey of Stephens County; Sandi Mitcham, Newton County; Lori Johnson, Bacon County; and Young Farmer Achievement Award winners Shelly, Cohen, Drew and Chloe Echols of Hall County; back row, from left, Clay Wilson, Madison County; Andy Garland, Henry County; Ross Kendrick, Turner County; David Lee, Bacon County; Derry Bennett, Cook County; Michael Thomason, Franklin County; and Charles Berry, Newton County.

Rangers train for parachuting into water

By: Scott Rogers

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The Times publishes news on management or professional-level hires and promotions, major awards and other newsworthy accomplishments involving local businesses each Sunday on the Business page and Send information, including photos and contact information, to; please put “Newsmakers” in the subject line. The deadline is 4 p.m. Thursdays for Sunday publication.

Lula farmer re-elected to AgGeorgia board of directors

Bobby G. Miller of Lula has been re-elected to the AgGeorgia Farm Credit Board of Directors. Miller has a cow-calf operation and grows hay. He also manages RGM Foothills Properties, HR Miller LLC and Jan-Ann-Rob LLC.

Miller, a graduate of Gainesville College and the University of Georgia, has served on the board of AgGeorgia Farm Credit since 1991 on various committees. He currently serves as vice chairman and is a member of the Credit Risk Committee.

Miller is a member of the Georgia Cattlemen’s Association, having served as a past state president, and is a member and director of Banks County Cattlemen’s Association.

He is presently a member of the Lula Downtown Development Authority.

He and his wife, Gale, have three daughters and son-in-laws and four grandchildren.

Buford woman graduates from Georgia Academy for Economic Development

Meisa Pace of Buford recently graduated from the Georgia Academy for Economic Development, which provides training in economic and community development, business recruitment and retention, tourism product development, downtown development and planning. The curriculum also includes consensus building, ethics in public service and collaborative leadership.

Pace has been with the Georgia Mountains Regional Commission for four years and serves as the grants administrator in the economic development department.

The commission is a regional planning and development organization focused on providing technical assistance to 13 counties and 38 municipalities.

Georgia Farm Bureau Federation honors Echol family

The Georgia Farm Bureau Federation recognized the best of the organization’s volunteers and county chapters during an awards program held Dec. 7 at the GFB 77th annual convention on Jekyll Island. The state award winners were honored for the programs they conducted this past year to promote agriculture.

“One of the highlights of Georgia Farm Bureau’s annual convention is recognizing our individual and county award winners. Our county Farm Bureau volunteers have worked hard this year to educate their communities about Georgia agriculture by visiting schools to conduct Ag in the Classroom activities, holding farm tours and legislative events to highlight the contribution agriculture makes to their communities and Georgia’s economy,” GFB President Zippy Duvall said.

Drew and Shelly Echols of Hall County were named the GFB Young Farmer Achievement winners. The Echolses grow fresh fruit and vegetables with Drew’s grandfather, Jimmy; father, Jarl; and uncle Judah at Jaemor Farms. The family sells their produce at the original Jaemor Farm Market in Alto and at the new Jaemor Market in Commerce.

Drew and Shelly served on the GFB Young Farmer Committee in 2005 and 2006. Drew is a Hall County Farm Bureau director and served as HCFB president from 2009-2013. They have a daughter, Chloe, and son, Cohen.

The Echolses received a $500 cash prize, courtesy of Georgia Farm Bureau, and an expense-paid trip to the American Farm Bureau Federation Convention Jan. 10-12 in San Diego, Calif., to compete for national honors. They also received a Polaris rough-terrain-vehicle.

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