The Farm Credit System marked its 95th anniversary with a party last week at its new AgriBank office in St. Paul.
To mark the occasion, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman issued a Proclamation declaring April 19, 2012 as "Farm Credit Day."
The celebration honored the contributions of farmers across the state of Minnesota and the balance of the fifteen states in the AgriBank District. Representatives from state and local government, as well as Minnesota agribusinesses, attended.
"Agriculture and the food industry represent a bright spot in America's economy and we are very proud of the deep roots that AgriBank and Farm Credit has in the state of Minnesota," said Bill York, AgriBank CEO. "Agriculture is vitally important to the state's economy. Nearly 15% of all jobs are based in the agriculture and/or food production industries. Agriculture also ranks as the second largest export sector and contributes to almost 20% of our state's total exports. Farm Credit is honored to help finance this industry."
Speakers for the event included Jim Boerboom, Minnesota Department of Ag deputy commissioner; Paul DeBriyn, AgStar president and Chief Executive Officer; Dick Davidson, AgriBank Board Chair, from Ohio; and Matt Kramer, St. Paul Chamber of Commerce president. Kramer presented the mayor's proclamation to York.
A three-generation Minnesota farm family also was recognized for their dedication to farming, representing thousands of similar farmers across the state and over the decades. Jim and Sue Vermilya and son Steve, from Dover, were chosen to receive this special award that acknowledged their efforts for "Feeding a Hungry World."
Concluded York: "Our sights are set on building an even better tomorrow for the farmers, ranchers and rural Americans we serve. As the agricultural industry expands and thrives on a global scale, Farm Credit will be there, leading the way as we have for the past 95 years."