Terry Detrick, vice president of American Farmers and Ranchers, was recently awarded the 2008 National Association of FSA County Office Employees Coalition Partner. Each year NASCOE identifies a Coalition Partner of the Year and this year Detrick was recognized at the NASCOE National Convention in Omaha, Neb.
Detrick said, "I am honored by this award, not because of what I've done but because of who and what they are. I have a deep respect for what our county FSA employees do for farmers across the country. They are the ones that carry out our USDA programs, explain them to the producers and help them weed through the sometimes exhausting amounts of paper work. It has been my privilege to get to work with them on behalf of our agriculture producers."
Brian Hisey, president of the Oklahoma Association of FSA County Office Employees, stated that "Terry joined OKASCOE officials during the 2006 Legislative Conference along with his good friend Paul Jackson from Apache. This was the first time ever that a genuine producer and coalition partner, that I'm aware of, got up and spoke to the NASCOE members." It was during that trip that Detrick was able to see first-hand the work that these county employees do on behalf of farmers at our nation's capital. "Their main focus in Washington was how they could better serve the producer," said Detrick. Since that time, Terry has continued to be involved and supportive of both OKASCOE and NASCOE.
Of the approximate 10,600 eligible county FSA employees, more than 85 percent are members. Each state has an independent state organization and Oklahoma has a 92 percent voluntary membership. These state associations are affiliated with the national organization (NASCOE). The affiliates each have two members serving on the NASCOE Board of Directors. For Oklahoma, the positions are filled by Keith Whiteneck (Blaine County) and Kevin Dale (Bryan County). The current president of OKASCOE is Brian Hisey, Muskogee County and, on October 1 of this year, the position will pass to Terri McCoy (Grant County). All officers, Executive Committee members, and Standing Committee members are full-time FSA employees who perform their NASCOE/OKASCOE duties on unofficial time. Travel and business expenses are paid from membership dues.