Six to Be Honored With W.Va. Agriculture and Forestry Hall of Fame Award

Contributions of honorees "cover the field" of agriculture.

Published on: Jun 24, 2009
Six individuals with ties to the West Virginia agriculture industry will soon be enshrined into the state's Agriculture and Forestry Hall of Fame. The honorees are Barton S. Baker, Bayward Butler, Edward C. Grose, Gerald William Waybright, James Ernest Deltz and Harry Gordon.

The awards will be presented at a reception and banquet, beginning at 5 p.m., Saturday, July 18, at WVU Jackson's Mill in Weston.

The honorees are being appreciated for outstanding contributions to agriculture, forestry and family life in the state. The honorees and some of their accomplishments include:

• Dr. Barton S. Baker, Morgantown, W.Va., is a beef producer, teacher, writer and researcher who has made lifelong outreach efforts through the WVU Davis College of Agriculture, Forestry and Consumer Services, as well as the WVU Cooperative Extension Service.

• Bayward Butler, Exchange, W. Va., is a public school teacher who retired in 1980 and has since worked to advance the management of agriculture and other natural resources. He has served as Braxton County Farm Bureau president and also served on the Elk Soil Conservation Council.

• Edward C. Grose, Terra Alta, W. Va., is owner of Montcroft Farms. Grose raises cattle and certified seed potatoes on the farm. He also conducts his own farming "practical research." Grose has represented West Virginia on the National Potato Board and has served as a cooperator in many potato research trials.

• James Ernest Dietz, Huntington, W.Va., grows Christmas trees on the 550-acre family farm. He is also an effective promoter of W. Va. Christmas trees and performs research into better cultural practices and variety research. He is a member of the W.Va. Christmas Tree Growers Association.

• Harry J. Gordon, Circleville, W.Va., is a wildlife manager for the W.Va. Conservation Commission, Game Section, in a large section of the Monongahela National Forest. Some in the industry say Gordon was responsible for the return of wild turkeys in the Allegheny Mountain area. He was also instrumental in the building of Spruce Knob Lake and of Shot Cherry Cabin, Forestry's Spruce Knob headquarters.

• Gerald William Waybright, Washington, W.Va., worked for the W.Va. Division of Forestry until retirement in 2006. He has devoted his career to improving timber harvesting techniques and in the promotion of Best Management Practices for timber harvest.

Tickets for the Agriculture and Forestry Hall event are $30. To learn more, contact Brenda Aldridge, W.Va. Extension Service at (304) 293-5691.

You can also read more about the Hall of Fame event and about the honorees at