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Ross, Myers honored at Extension banquet

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By Ron Benningfield

 Kathy Ross and Gil Myers received the 2012 Bobby McDowell Award of Excellence at LaRue County Extension Council’s leadership banquet at the Extension office in Hodgenville Jan. 23.

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The award, named in honor of the late Extension Council leader Bobby McDowell, recognizes individuals, families, family businesses, and civic or service organizations that have made significant contributions to LaRue County in service, participation, or leadership through Extension programs or the business sector.

Bobby McDowell was Ross’s first husband. The award, which began in 1985, was renamed in his honor in 1991.

Ross, honored for her work with community development, was selected in 2009 as the county’s “Mother of the Year.” A retired LaRue County teacher and school administrative manager, she founded the Wonderful Wednesday elementary school program and helped implement LaRue County Reads. 

The first LaRue County ExCEL (educational leadership) award winner, Ross is an active volunteer at First Baptist Church in Hodgenville and is a leader in LaRue County’s Relay for Life program.

Myers, who holds a doctorate in animal parasitology, operates Myer’s Parasitology Services, a livestock parasitology consulting business and lab. He moved to LaRue County 20 years ago and has served on the LaRue County Extension Council and District Board where he was president and treasurer.

Owning and operating Surreal Farm near Mount Sherman, he is an active member of the LaRue County Beef Cattle Association, the LaRue County Goat and Sheep Association and served as the first president of the Kentucky Goat Producers.    

The Wisconsin native has been county director of LaRue County Farm Bureau and advised several University of Kentucky and state related livestock committees.

Ashley Reding, the dinner speaker, emphasized the need to correct the many misconceptions about modern agriculture, which is a major focus of the organization she represents, CommonGround. 

“The goal of CommonGround is to start a conversation, to be credible, real, inclusive and positive,” she told the audience of over 80 people. 

She, her husband and members of his family, own Homestead Family Farms in Howardstown.