Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation honors distinguished service award recipients
November 21, 2017
The Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation honored recipients of the 2017 Wyoming Farm Bureau Distinguished Service Award at the 98th annual meeting of the Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation. Presented Nov. 17, the award is given to those who have gone above and beyond in their service to agriculture. The 2017 recipients are Carleton Perry, Sheridan County (posthumously recognized); David and Judy Garber, Sheridan County; and Perry Livingston, Crook County.
"We are proud to recognize these recipients for their dedication to agriculture and Farm Bureau in Wyoming," said Todd Fornstrom, WyFB president. "They all are the epitome of true leaders who have dedicated their lives to serving agriculture through Farm Bureau."
Carleton Perry's outstanding service and commitment to the WyFB and the citizens of the state of Wyoming was recognized posthumously as he was killed in a tragic accident while working cattle last March at the age of 85. Perry was a family man, a state legislator, a Farm Bureau leader and a community leader.
Perry held all offices in the Sheridan County Farm Bureau and also served on the WyFB board of directors as the Northeast District director. He was elected to the Wyoming State Legislature in 1976 and served through 1982. He served in the Wyoming House of Representatives and the Wyoming Senate. According to the Sheridan County Farm Bureau nomination letter, he was a strong voice during this time for the WyFB by concentrating on reducing agricultural taxes.
The second recipients of this award started their involvement in Farm Bureau when asked to do so by the first recipient of this award, Perry. David and Judy Garber, of Sheridan, have been involved in Farm Bureau leadership since 1983. "I am a second generation volunteer as I grew up attending Farm Bureau meetings with my Dad," David Garber said.
David serves as the president of the Sheridan County Farm Bureau and is also the Northeast District director on the WyFB board of directors. Judy is always willing to serve on committees at the state annual meeting and supports David in his Farm Bureau work.
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In addition to Farm Bureau leadership the past 34 years, David served as president of the Big Horn Permittee Association and as chairman of the Lake DeSmet Board. He also serves on the board of the Perkins Foundation.
In the nomination letter, local rancher Bill White expressed appreciation for David's leadership. "David has given countless hours to the Wyoming Farm Bureau. The face of Wyoming agriculture has changed a lot during David's tenure and he has adapted and done everything he can for the betterment of Wyoming as a state and agriculture in particular," White wrote.
The Garbers were humbled to receive the award. "Leadership opportunities and the strength of the grassroots organization is what we value the most about Farm Bureau," David Garber said.
"It is important for farmers and ranchers to have an outside influence through participation in organizations," Garber continued. "We believe Farm Bureau is the best balance because it is a national voice, very credible and works towards the goals of agriculture."
The third recipient is a third generation leader in the Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation. Crook County Rancher Perry Livingston served as WyFB president from 2005-2016 and WyFB vice president for the six years prior. Livingston also served in many leadership roles at the county level including county Farm Bureau president. He served on the American Farm Bureau Federation board of directors from 2009-2014. During his term as WyFB President, he also chaired the Mountain West Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company board of directors.
Livingston's Farm Bureau roots run deep and began taking hold when his grandfather, Herbert D. Livingston, became involved with Farm Bureau in the 1940s and served as WyFB president for 10 years in the 1960s.
Perry's father, Buddy Livingston, served on the WyFB state board and as one of WyFB's lobbyists for 25 years. His mother, Norma, was always by Buddy's side helping at the legislature and Farm Bureau meetings.
Generational involvement requires some to stay at home to care for the ranch and some to be off doing their part in leadership. "Perry took care of things at home while his dad, Buddy, was in Cheyenne lobbying for Farm Bureau. He also served as a county commissioner before doing his part in assuming leadership roles in Farm Bureau. Perry is a classic example of being part of the solution in a world full of problems," wrote the Niobrara County Farm Bureau in their nomination letter.
Livingston is a dedicated leader who is passionate about ensuring agriculture's voice is heard through Farm Bureau. "It is important to be involved with the issues affecting ranching and farming and Farm Bureau is the vehicle of involvement," Livingston said. "The opportunity to have a voice on issues affecting your farm or ranch is a tremendous advantage of belonging to Farm Bureau."
"The Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation is proud to honor Carleton Perry posthumously, David and Judy Garber, and Perry Livingston with the 2017 Distinguished Service Award," Fornstrom concluded. "We thank them for their distinguished leadership and service to agriculture and Wyoming."