News & Media

Top Young Farmers & Ranchers Recognized

Brandon and Lauren Martin of Judsonia (White Co.) and Sara Beth Johnson of Hickory Plains (Lonoke Co.) earned the top Young Farmers & Ranchers awards today during Arkansas Farm Bureau’s annual Officers & Leaders Conference at the John Q. Hammons Convention Center in Rogers. The awards honor young farmers and ranchers ages 18-35 for the general excellence of their operations and their hard work and innovation.

With the YF&R Achievement Award, the Martins received a $35,000 cash prize and a trip to the 2023 American Farm Bureau Convention in Puerto Rico to compete for the national award. The Achievement Award recognizes young farmers and ranchers in Arkansas who have excelled in their farming/ranching operations and exhibited outstanding leadership abilities. The award is designed for an individual or couple involved in full-time production agriculture with a majority of their income subject to normal production risks.

Photo of Martins with awardRight to left are ArFB President Rich Hillman, Young Farmers & Ranchers Vice Chair Monica Paskewitz, Lauren and Brandon Martin with sons Braylen and Willie, YF&R Chair Reed Storey and ArFB Vice President Mike Freeze. 

The Martins have six broiler houses, 55 head of commercial cows and a small herd of registered Hereford heifers. They also custom bale over 600 bales of hay a year on 65 acres. The couple have two sons, Braylen and Willie.

Johnson received the YF&R Excellence in Agriculture Award, which recognizes the accomplishments of individuals or couples who do not earn the majority of their income through farming, but who are involved in farming and Arkansas Farm Bureau. They are evaluated on their understanding of agricultural issues, as well as leadership, achievements and involvement in Arkansas Farm Bureau and other organizations.

Sara Beth Johnson photoRight to left are ArFB President Rich Hillman, Young Farmers & Ranchers Chair Reed Storey, Sara Beth Johnson, YF&R Vice Chair Monica Paskewitz and ArFB Vice President Mike Freeze. 

As winner of the Excellence in Agriculture Award, she will receive $11,000 cash prize and a trip to the 2023 American Farm Bureau Convention to compete for the national award.

Johnson is a content and social media specialist for Filament Ag, an agricultural marketing company. She and her husband, Colton, own and operate Flying Pig Cattle Co., where they have a commercial cow-calf herd, a goat herd and registered Miniature Herefords.

Arkansas Farm Bureau is a nonprofit, private advocacy organization with almost 190,000 families throughout the state working to improve farm and rural life.                                              

For more information, contact:

Steve Eddington                                                                     
(501) 228 -1383                                                                                                                 
steve.eddington@arfb.com 

or                       

Rob Anderson
(501) 228-1640
rob.anderson@arfb.com