Home > News > Press Releases
Governor Whitman Awarded Honorary American FFA Degree
For Immediate Release: December 6, 1999 Contact:

Hope Gruzlovic


Governor Christine Todd Whitman was presented with the Honorary American FFA Degree today by officers of the New Jersey State FFA organization accompanied by state Agriculture Secretary Art Brown, Jr. The award is the highest bestowed by the National FFA Organization to recognize those teachers and other adults who have given exceptional service to youth, agricultural education and the FFA through their support of agriculture. Presenting the medallion and certificate were New Jersey State FFA President Nicole Steward, Vice President Keith Wassall, State Sentinel Devin Daniels, Executive Committee Representative Paulette Nyiri and Allentown FFA Chapter President Liz Lustgarten. "The American FFA Degree reflects a national recognition of Governor Whitman's unwavering commitment to the Garden State's thriving agriculture industry and her determination to keep the industry strong and viable for future generations of New Jersey farm families," Brown said. He noted that Whitman has taken part in a number of FFA events over the years and set aside time to meet with both State and National FFA officers to discuss the FFA's goals and make sure FFA members understand the continuing importance of agriculture to New Jersey's economic and aesthetic well-being. Among the many accomplishments that earned Whitman the Honorary American FFA degree are the recent creation of the Garden State Trust Fund through which to fund preservation of a million acres of farmland and open space; her support for the relocation of the State FFA Organization to the Department of Agriculture; and her support for recent legislation which authorized state grants to fund the purchase of computer equipment and software needed to improve the quality of instructional programs for more than half the agriculture education students around the state. Governor at FFA Presentation Her nomination for the award cited Whitman's involvement in policies that will maintain a viable agricultural industry, such as strengthening the right-to-farm legislation and expanding the provisions of the Farmland Assessment Act, as well as her clear commitment to FFA youth activities and accomplishments. Governor Christie received her Honorary American FFA degree from (left to right) Agriculture Secretary Art Brown, Jr.; State FFA Sentinel Devin Daniels; Allentown FFA President Liz Lustgarten; State FFA President Nichole Steward; State FFA Vice President Keith Wassall; and State FFA Executive Committee Chairperson Paulette Nyiri.