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AFS Spring Awards Banquet highlights academic, extracurricular performance

AFS Spring Awards Banquet highlights academic, extracurricular performance

Outstanding student academic and extracurricular performance was in the spotlight on Saturday (Apr. 13) during Texas Tech’s Department of Animal and Food Sciences Spring Awards Banquet at the McKenzie-Merket Alumni Center. More than 325 students, faculty, staff, parents and supporters attended the department’s annual event.

Among the evening’s highlights was recognition of the judging and competitive teams. The 2012 national championship meat judging team was awarded trophy belt buckles. Individual awards to members of the teams were also presented.

The Meat Judging Team awards were:

  • Doug Hardison Memorial Outstanding Judge Award – Bo Hutto
  • Markus F. Miller Spirit and Motivation Award – Steven Ebeling
  • 1996 Team Scholarship Award – Dan Crownover
  • Katie Robinson Perseverance Awards – Valerie Manning and Heather Rode

The Livestock Judging Team awarded the Jerry Hawkins Memorial Livestock Judging Award to Ryan Boldt. The National Champion Meat Animal Evaluation, Equestrian, Ranch Horse, Horse Judging, Rodeo and Wool Judging Teams were recognized.

The evening also honored outstanding individual performances, including:

  • Outstanding AFS PhD Student – Jennifer Martin
  • Outstanding AFS MS Student – Collin Corbin
  • Bob Albin Graduate Research Awards – PhD: Byron Chaves (1st), Jerilyn Hergenreder (2nd), Alex Brandt and Sydney Knobel (3rd). M.S.: Collin Corbin and Alex Thompson (1st), Diana Ayala (2nd), Josh Ison (3rd). Undergraduate: Graysen Ortega (1st), Erin Caselli (2nd), Cara Wessels (3rd)
  • San Antonio Livestock Exposition Graduate Student Award – Andrew Hosford & Sydney Knobel
  • Outstanding Meat Science Graduate Student – Jerilyn Hergenreder
  • Outstanding Animal Science & Department Senior – Brandon Reeves
  • Outstanding Food Science Senior – Graysen Ortega
  • Outstanding Senior Academic Achievement Awards – Rebecca Burson, Ashley Daggs, Blair Dingler, Brady Giles, Maggie Jones, William Luckett, Rachel Morley, Caitlin O’Neal, Graysen Ortega, Brandon Reeves, Whitney Stuart and Brittany Thompson
  • Senior Leadership Awards – Travis Begley, Mandy-Jo Laurent, Graysen Ortega, Brandon Reeves, Brittany Thompson, Ashley Willems and Dakotah Williams

The department honored seven international interns and their mentors who are part of the Sustaining Our World through Education and Research Program (SOWER) established by the International Center for Food Industry Excellence this year. The program is designed to support international students and faculty who have a passion for meeting global agriculture needs. The 2013 Interns were Elisa Botero, Ana Gomez, Gerson Flores, Luis Llumitasig, Carla Millares, Esau Salgado and Johana Torres.

Separately, the Block and Bridle Club recognized winners in the Little International Showmanship contest in each respective division:

  • Novice Cattle – Blake Davis
  • Expert Cattle –Linay Runnels
  • Novice Swine – Colton Coker
  • Expert Swine – Kristen Knight
  • Novice Goat – Taylor Shackelford
  • Expert Goat – Bailey Joe Pennington
  • Novice Sheep – Austin Langemeier
  • Expert Sheep – Morgan Smart

The overall showman, Kristen Knight, was awarded a trophy belt buckle.

Outstanding Service awards were presented to members Segayle Foster, Katy Satree, Ty Tubbs and Dakotah Williams. Jase Powell received the prestigious Workhorse Award. Block and Bridle officer recognition went to Mandy-Jo Laurent, President; Valerie Manning, Vice-President; Jase Powell, Secretary; Dan Crownover, Treasurer; Brittany Blum, Historian; and Brittany Thompson, SORC Representative. Ag Council Representatives were Bailey Joe Pennington, Colton Coker, Taylor Shackelford and Emily Jackson.

Reporting by Moriah Beyers

CONTACT: Leslie Thompson, chairman and professor, Department of Animal and Food Sciences, Texas Tech University at 806-742-2805 ext. 224 or

0501NM13 / PHOTOS – Deshea Hanagan


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