Louisville, KY (December 7, 2013)
– Pulaski County farmer Mark Haney was re-elected president of Kentucky Farm Bureau (KFB) on the concluding day of the organization’s 94th annual meeting. Also re-elected were Webster County’s Eddie Melton as First Vice-President and Hart County’s Fritz Giesecke as Second Vice-President. They comprise KFB’s Executive Committee along with Executive Vice President David S. Beck.
Haney has served on the Executive Committee for 15 years and has been a state director since 1993. For years he chaired the State Resolutions Committee. He is a past president and current board member of the Kentucky Center for Agriculture & Rural Development, past president of the Kentucky Center for Cooperative Development and past chairman of the Kentucky Horticulture Council. Also a former president of the Pulaski County Farm Bureau, Haney and his brother, Don, produce apples and peaches near Nancy, KY, where they also raise beef cattle. They sell fresh produce from their orchards – as well as cider, jellies, baked goods and other products – at a KFB Certified Roadside Market located on the farm. He and his wife, Marlene, have two sons and a daughter.
Melton, a former president of Webster County Farm Bureau, is chairman of KFB’s State Resolutions Committee and Health Care Task Force. He also was chairman of KFB’s Farm Bill Task Force, which conducted statewide forums and sought input from Kentucky farmers on provisions of the 2008 farm bill. Melton additionally serves as chairman of the board for the Southern States Cooperative. He and his wife, Regina, have a daughter.
Giesecke serves as the chair of KFB’s Beef Cattle Advisory Committee and is a member of KFB’s Farm Labor Advisory Committee and Health Care Task Force. He also serves on the executive committee of the U.S. Meat Export Federation. Giesecke has been an active member of the Hart County Farm Bureau for over 30 years where he has held a variety of leadership positions, including county president. He additionally served 25 years as county supervisor for the local soil conservation district. Giesecke and his wife, Lydia, have a daughter and a son, and farms in Horse Cave, KY.
Three new members were elected to the board this year: Dr. Nancy Cox, the new dean of the University of Kentucky’s College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, assumes the board position previously held by Dr. Scott Smith; Matt Gajdzik of Shelby County replaces Jason McGlone of Carter County as the new chair of the Young Farmer Advisory Committee; and Betty Farris of Butler County replaces Phyllis Amyx of Wolfe County as the new chair of the Women’s Advisory Committee.
Returning board members are: Tripp Furches of Calloway County; Glenn Howell of Fulton County; Kelly Thurman of McLean County; Mary Kate Kordes of Muhlenberg County; Larry Thomas of Hardin County; Patrick M. Henderson of Breckinridge County; Russell Poore of Logan County; Jay Coleman of Barren County; Scott Travis of Spencer County; Randy Chrisman of Anderson County; Joe Paul Mattingly of Marion County; David Chappell of Owen County; Terry Rowlett of Henry County; Danny Wilkinson of Adair County; Kim McCoy of Cumberland County; Terry R. Gilbert of Boyle County; David L. Campbell of Lincoln County; Alex Barnett of Harrison County; Shane Wiseman of Clark County; David McGlone of Carter County; Carroll Amyx of Wolfe County; Bige Hensley of Clay County; Holden Williams of Breathitt County; Marshall Coyle of Bath County; Mickey Sirls of Marshall County; Brandon Davis of Franklin County; and Nick Carter of Bourbon County.
Leadership for two of KFB’s key advisory committees was also announced during the organization’s annual meeting. Matt Gajdzik, of Shelby County, is the new chair of the Young Farmer Advisory Committee, and Betty Farris, of Butler County, was elected chair of the Women's Advisory Committee.
Matt Gajdzik replaces Jason McGlone, of Carter County, who served in the Young Farmer post for one year. The new vice chair of the Young Farmer Committee is Michael Highbaugh of Hardin County, the new secretary is Sarah Beth Guffey of Clinton County, and the social media chair is Amanda Gajdzik of Shelby County.
The Young Farmer Committee is comprised of both singles and married couples. Those members for 2014, including the officers, are: Jay and Trisha Campbell of Logan County; Matt and Stacy Collier of Greenup County; Brent and Rhonda Cornett of Clay County; Matt and Amanda Gajdzik of Shelby County; Colby and Sarah Beth Guffey of Clinton County; Michael and Laura Highbaugh of Hardin County; Alan Hubble of Lincoln County; Scott and Shea Lowe of Calloway County; James and Julie Lyons of Scott County; Kent and Danya Moore of Daviess County; Damian Smithers of Bracken County; and ex-officio members Greg and Contessa Harris of Madison County.
Vickie Bryant of Monroe County was elected first vice chair, and Sharon Furches of Calloway County was elected second vice chair of the Women’s Committee.
The Women's Advisory Committee for 2014, including the officers are: Phyllis Amyx of Wolfe County; Vickie Bryant of Monroe County; Mary Jayne Cannon of Fleming County; Pam Chappell of Owen County; Betty Farris of Butler County; Sharon Furches of Calloway County; Terry Gilbert of Boyle County; Margaret Hensley of Clay County; Sue Litkenhus of Anderson County; Cathy Pleasants of Lincoln County; Carol Sullivan of Taylor County; Bettie Wallace of Caldwell County.
With more than 475,000 member families statewide, Kentucky Farm Bureau is the state’s largest general farm organization. Approximately 1,500 members attended KFB’s 94th annual meeting, December 4-7, to recognize this year’s individual and organizational achievements as well as adopt policy for 2014. To view all the updates released from this year’s annual meeting, visit