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Brannen, Lanier named to Georgia Ag Hall of Fame

By Chowning Johnson
University of Georgia

Stephen J. Brannen and William L. Lanier Sr. were inducted into the Georgia Agricultural Hall of Fame Sept. 17 at the University of Georgia in Athens, Ga.

The two were honored during the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Agricultural Alumni Association dinner. Their portraits will be displayed in the CAES Activity Center on the UGA campus in Athens.

Since 1972, the CAES alumni have honored Georgians who have greatly contributed to agriculture by inducting them into the Georgia Agricultural Hall of Fame. This year's event also recognized the alumni association's 50th anniversary.

Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Tommy Irvin and Georgia Farm Bureau President Wayne Dollar were also honored during the event.

Steve Brannen

Brannen earned bachelor's and master's degrees from UGA and a Ph.D. in agricultural economics at North Carolina State. He returned to UGA as an assistant county agent. He became an Extension economist, farm management specialist and Extension economics department head. In 1967, he received the agricultural alumni outstanding teacher award.

For more than 27 years, Brannen chaired the UGA division of agricultural economics. Under his leadership, the division was presented Farm Credit Banks of Columbia's Medallion Award. He received a special Georgia Farm Bureau award for his contributions to agricultural marketing.

Brannen founded the Georgia Agribusiness Council and the Georgia Society of Farm Managers and Appraisers. He published "Farm Economic Briefs" and contributed to Georgia's Farm Record Book and the Farm Income Tax Guide.

He was a consultant and advisor for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Coastal Plains Regional Commission, Opekasit Inc., Commodity Credit Corporation, Financial Services Inc. and Farm Credit Banks of Columbia.

Brannen is a member of Gamma Sigma Delta, AGHON, American Agricultural Economics Association and International Association for Agricultural Economists. He is a charter member and former secretary, treasurer and president of the Georgia Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers.

Bill Lanier

Lanier grew up in Candler County, Ga. He graduated from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and UGA with a bachelor's degree in agronomy. He was twice named "Who's Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges."

As a member of the Georgia Legislature, Lanier wrote more farm and consumer protection legislation than anyone else in Georgia's history. He chaired the House Agriculture Committee in 1954-1958 and drafted many amendments and legislative acts that have helped improve Georgia's agriculture.

Lanier was appointed to the U.S. President's Consumer Advisor Board.

He served on advisory boards and in other roles for C&S National Bank, Southern Boosters, Agriculture Public Relations Committee, Cotton Inc., Tobacco Stabilization Corporation, American Farm Bureau, Altamaha-Georgia Southern Area Planning and Development Commission, Eterna Club, U.S./U.S.S.R. Exchange Team, Boy Scouts of America, National Cotton Council, Pineland State Bank, Candler County Hospital and the CAES Alumni Association.

Lanier was awarded Man of the Year in Georgia Agriculture by Progressive Farmer Magazine. He earned many other honor, including "Mr. Baldwin," "Georgia Tree Farmer of the Year," "Citizen of the Year" and "Conservation Man of the Year."

Irvin, Dollar

CAES dean and director Gale Buchanan presented engraved crystal octagons to Irvin and Dollar to commemorate their distinguished service to Georgia agriculture.

"Commissioner Irvin and President Dollar have not only orchestrated dollars to enhance our teaching, research and extension mission of the college, they have supported our state budget and legislative requests," Buchanan said. "And they have worked behind the scenes to ensure that we remain a productive land-grant institution."

Buchanan attributed the success of the CAES to the strong partnership among the college, Farm Bureau and the Department of Agriculture.

Irvin and his wife Bernice fund the Tommy Irvin Scholarship. Through the Department of Agriculture and Georgia Seed Development Commission, he also helped fund an eminent scholar in biotechnology and seed development. He is already a member of the Georgia Agricultural Hall of Fame.

Through Dollar's leadership, the Georgia Farm Bureau has sponsored and supported student activities such as Georgia 4-H and many CAES events.

(Chowning Johnson is a student writer with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)

(Chowning Johnson is a student writer with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)

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