Farm Family of the Year – The Richard Pry Family (Needwood Farms)
Over 100 years, more than an entire century, Needwood farm has been passed through and made home to 7 generations of family farmers. In 1915, Richards grandfather purchased the farm milking dairy cows. After his passing, Richards father at 19 years old was handed the farm. At 4 years old Richard was in the barn every day with his father and grew a love and passion for agriculture. In 1952, Richard purchased a farm up the road from the home farm. In 1955, he married his high school sweetheart, Pat, and started raising their beef herd. Today, the family owns 372 acres, where they grow hay, corn, soybeans, and barley. They use these crops to grind and mix their own feed that they use to raise their beef that they sell to their customers.
Ag Business of the Year – Shriver’s Meats
The story of Shriver’s Meat started back in 1963 when Norm and Sandy needed one of their own animals butchered. By October of 1964 they were inspected by the health department processing both deer and beef and welcomed their first customer into Shrivers Meats. Today, they are federally certified by the USDA and butcher just beef. The Shriver family currently farms 650 acres that then is feed to their 100 head herd of beef cattle. This past year Shrivers Meat was able to set their record high as they processed just shy of 1.1 million pounds, dressed weight, of meat or a little over 1600 head. The Shriver family would like to thank all past and current employees as they would not be where they are without them as well as their fellow friends and families.
Ag Advocate of the Year- Laura Ramsburg
Growing up Laura was a member of the Frederick County 4-H where her projects focused around food preservation, sewing, and cooking. She was also a member of the Glade Valley Junior Grange and the Glade Valley Grange. As these organizations helped increase her involvement in agriculture, her love and passion for Agriculture was founded when she became a member of the Walkersville High School FFA Chapter. Her advisors at the time, Mr. Chuck Cramer and Mr. Vernon Marshall helped embellish her hidden love for this industry. Laura has worked in the parts department at Gladhill Tractor for 37 years and in her spare time advocates for agriculture through many organizations and events. Laura encourages young advocates and other farmers to let your voice be heard, stand up for what you believe in, and it is up to you to keep Agriculture alive and thriving in Frederick County.
Young Farmer of the Year – Jamie Derr
Jamie is a 4th generation farmer and she grew up on her family’s dairy farm where they milked until she was about 14 years old. They then transitioned to raising replacement heifers. She went off to college to obtain a teaching degree, but also found her husband Chris. The beautiful story of Chris and Jamie Derr continues today on Valley-Ho farm, a farm Chris’s grandparents purchased in Middletown in 1962. In 2008, the two got married and started managing the crops on the farm while both still had jobs on other farms. 8 years ago they joined forces and started their own dairy operation. Today, Jamie alongside her husband Chris farm 230 acres of land to be sustainable and feed their 70 head milking herd and young heifers. Jamie also started her own side business, Valley Homemade and Homegrown, hosting “cut your own flower events as well as arranging classes. Jamie encourages young farmers to “figure out what you are passionate about and chase your dreams. It is going to demand a lot of work, but if it is something you love the hard work is worth it. Most importantly don’t be afraid to ask for help and always remember to do what is best for you and your operation.”