Brough, who served last year on the NCGA’s executive, air quality and ginning technology committees, also is as a director for the National Cotton Council and its export promotions arm, Cotton Council International. He also serves on the NCC’s Research and Education Committee.

Other NCGA officers elected include: first vice president, Larry McClendon, Marianna, Ark.; second vice president, Russell Kuhnhenn, Buckeye, Ariz.; and third vice president, Van Murphy, Quitman, Ga. Outgoing president Richard Holder, Kinston, N.C., now serves as board chairman, and Bill Norman, Memphis, Tenn., is executive vice president

McClendon also was named NCGA’s 2003 Horace Hayden Cotton Ginner of the Year. The NCGA Award is given to those individuals who have provided a career of distinguished service to the U.S. ginning industry.

The Marianna native has been farming since the 1970s and ginning since 1989. His gin handled more than 100,000 bales in 2002, double the volume of just two years earlier. He has served on several NCGA committees and was a NCC and CCI director in 2003. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture Business from the University of Arkansas.

“Larry provides outstanding service to his customers and is always in search for new ways to put more money in the producer’s pockets,” one of McClendon’s nominators said. “Larry McClendon has always been known to his customers and to those within the cotton and ginning industry as fair and honest in all of his business dealings. His ethical business standards can best be measured in the trust, respect, and responsibilities he is given by his customers with their continued and increased business …”

The NCGA’s 2003 Distinguished Service Award recipient is Herb Willcutt, an Extension professor and specialist of agricultural and biological engineering at Mississippi State University for the past 20 years. Previously, he served the cotton industry for nine years as an employee of Cotton Incorporated, working with the cotton module builder and conservation tillage systems for cotton production.

His current assignments include developing materials and educational programs in the areas of mechanization and ginning, rural and farm safety and health, AgrAbility (a program that helps provide assistive technology to individuals with a disability who desire to pursue work in agriculture), chemical application, grain drying and storage, cottonseed storage, and other areas.

He has conducted numerous research demonstrations, assisted manufacturers and presented programs on the proper use of cotton module builders across the Cotton Belt and provides expertise in design and management of cottonseed storage facilities. He was an early instructor at the NCGA’s Stoneville Gin School and continues to be involved in that and other association activities.

Willcutt also is inventor or co-inventor on two patents and participated in the development, testing and production of the automatic control package for the KBH cotton module builder.

Among awards he holds are the Mayfield Cotton Engineering Award recipient by the American Society of Agricultural Engineers; Mississippi Agricultural Aviation’s “Agrinaut”; Mississippi Association of County Agents “Specialist of the Year” and Mississippi Section of American Society of Agricultural Engineers’ Engineer of the Year. He was a co-recipient of the 1996 Extra Effort Certificate for participation in the development of the Gin Management and Technology Course at Mississippi State University.

The Alabama native holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s in agricultural engineering from Auburn University.

e-mail: flaws@primediabusiness.com