Celebrating Excellence in Agriculture: Ned H. Martin Inaugural Agricultural Hall of Fame Award

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In a heartfelt ceremony during the N.C. Cooperative Extension, Surry County Center Farm City Banquet which gathered members of the agricultural community, civic leaders, and the families of Surry County, the first-ever Agricultural Hall of Fame Award was presented posthumously to Mr. Ned H. Martin. This prestigious award aims to recognize and honor individuals who have made outstanding contributions and displayed exemplary leadership in the field of agriculture. Among a pool of highly deserving nominees, Ned H. Martin emerged as a beacon of excellence in the Surry County agricultural landscape.

A woman is presented with a plaque for the Surry County Agricultural Hall of Fame.

Photo Credit: Cindy Marion    Photo Left to Right:  Gail Shelton (daughter), Ivylyn Martin (wife), Joy Richardson (daughter), Jonna Radford (N.C. Cooperative Extension Surry Center Director)

A Lifetime Devoted to Agriculture

Mr. Ned H. Martin, a dedicated dairy farmer, devoted an impressive 41 years of his life to the Beulah community. Throughout his illustrious career, Martin not only demonstrated a remarkable commitment to his own farm but also worked collaboratively with the Soil and Water Conservation Service and the Agricultural Extension Service. His open-mindedness towards innovation and a willingness to embrace new ideas set him apart as a leader in the industry.

Building Bridges in the Agricultural Community:

One of Martin’s notable achievements was his instrumental role in the establishment of Surco Farms Co-Op. In collaboration with five other dairymen, they successfully sold and distributed pasteurized dairy products to Surry County residents, fostering growth within the agricultural community.

Additionally, Martin, alongside his wife Ivylyn, played a pivotal role in constructing the first Surry County demonstration house in cooperation with the Agricultural Extension Service, Farmers Home Administration, and Duke Power. This groundbreaking initiative not only showcased innovation farming practices but also earned him the prestigious Duke Power Gold Medallion award for an all-electric farm and home, setting a model for others in the farming community.

A Global Vision:

Ned H. Martin’s commitment to excellence extended beyond the county borders. He served on the United Dairies Board of Directors, aiding dairymen in surrounding counties to market their milk more effectively. Martin’s dedication to learning and implementing best practices led him to tour eight countries and five states, gaining valuable insights that he brought back to benefit the local farming community.

Mentoring and Recognition:

In addition to his substantial contributions to the agricultural industry, Martin was known for his generosity in helping fellow farmers in times of need. His mentorship of numerous young farmers left a lasting legacy, inspiring the next generation of agricultural leaders.

Over the course of his remarkable career, Mr. Ned H. Martin received several accolades, including the Surry County Conservation Farmer of the Year and fourth place for Northwest Outstanding Conservation Farmer of the Year.

A Lasting Legacy:

The Agricultural Hall of Fame Award is not only a recognition of past accomplishments, but a celebration of a lifetime dedicated to agriculture. On behalf of the late Mr. Ned H. Martin, his wife Ivylyn and daughters Gail Shelton and Joy Richardson graciously accepted the distinguished honor, receiving a certification and a metal sign to be displayed at their farm, commemorating Ned’s lasting impact on the community.

As we celebrate the induction of Mr. Ned H. Martin into the Agricultural Hall of Fame, we look forward to continuing to grant this award annually, recognizing and honoring those who contribute to the flourishing legacy of Surry County agriculture. The inaugural recipient has set an inspiring standard for the “greats” in Surry County agriculture, and the upcoming Agriculture Hall of Fame exhibit will undoubtedly pay homage to the exceptional individuals who have shaped the local farming landscape.

You can view the induction ceremony thanks to our friends at Surry-On-The-Go.