Ag Hall of Fame

first_imgBrooks Pennington, Jr.Pennington dedicated his life to building Pennington Seed, Inc., one of the most successful agribusinesses in the nation, which was founded by his father.He studied agricultural engineering and agronomy at UGA and put his knowledge to work at his family business. His textbook,”Seeds and Planting in the South,” is a standard for manySouthern colleges of agriculture.The chair of President Jimmy Carter’s first campaign forgovernor, he was also Carter’s presidential campaign agriculturalcoordinator in 1976.Pennington served in both chambers of the Georgia GeneralAssembly. For eight years he chaired the Georgia Senateagriculture and natural resources committee.He donated his political pay to the Brooks Pennington Sr.Scholarship Fund. This fund has enabled more than 30 students toattend college. Seven years after his death, Pennington is stilltouching students’ lives through his scholarship fund. Robert LowreyLowrey grew up in Floyd County, Ga. He earned bachelor’s andmaster’s degrees in animal science from UGA and a Ph.D. in animalnutrition from Cornell University.After working with the Atomic Energy Agricultural Research Lab in Oak Ridge, Tenn., he returned to UGA as an animal scienceresearcher on a team studying beef cattle nutrition. The team’sefforts led to the release of Coastcross-1 Bermuda grass.Lowrey was highly regarded by his more than 3,000 students. Hereceived many teaching awards, including the D.W. Brooks andJosiah Meigs awards. More than 50 of his former students work forthe UGA Extension Service. Many more are successful vocationalagriculture teachers, farmers and leaders.Since Lowrey retired in 1999, an endowed scholarship in his name has attracted more than $37,000 in contributions, an indication of the high esteem in which his students, colleagues, friends and family hold him. Garland ThompsonThompson is an agricultural banker and avid soil conservationist. A U.S. Marine Corps veteran, he earned degrees from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and UGA.At the Trust Company Bank of Coffee County, he pioneered banking services now offered in banks across Georgia.Thompson is a member and past chairman of the Georgia BankersAssociation Agriculture Committee, which informs bankers oncommunity, economic and agribusiness development issues.While chairing the Southeast Georgia Area Planning andDevelopment Commission, Thompson helped establish a $4 millionethanol fuels distillery that bought wheat and corn from localfarmers.His efforts also led the expansion of a jet aircraft enginecomponent manufacturer that created 300 new jobs, a $10 millionCoats and Clark yarn plant (250 jobs) and Joseph CampbellCompany’s purchase of Douglas Foods (700 jobs).He has been a district soil-and-water supervisor for almost 30years, and in 1977, Gov. George Busbee appointed him to the StateSoil Conservation Committee, which finds ways to develop landwithout harming the environment. He was reappointed by GovernorsJoe Frank Harris and Zell Miller and named chairman by RoyBarnes.In 1982, Thompson was named Man of the Year in Service to Georgia by Progressive Farmer magazine for his solid, lifelong support of agriculture and agricultural research and extension in Georgia.To learn more about the GeorgiaAgricultural Hall of Fame, seethe Hall of Fame Web site ( By Sharon OmahenUniversity of GeorgiaRobert Lowrey, the late Brooks Pennington Jr. and GarlandThompson were named to the Georgia Agricultural Hall of FameSept. 5 in Athens, Ga.Since 1972, the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences has recognized Georgians who haveextraordinarily contributed to agriculture by inducting them intothe Georgia Agricultural Hall of Fame.The Hall includes Georgia governors, lawyers, farmers, bankers, educators and others. Their portraits are displayed in the CAES Activity Center on the UGA campus in Athens, Ga.last_img


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