MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Woody Anderson, a Colorado City, Texas, cotton producer, is the recipient of the 2014 Harry S. Baker Distinguished Service Award. He was honored during the National Cotton Council's 2015 annual meeting held here on February 6-8.
The award, named for the late California industry leader and past NCC President Harry S. Baker, is presented annually to a deserving individual who has provided extraordinary service, leadership and dedication to the U.S. cotton industry.
Anderson has been co-owner of Anderson Farms in Colorado City since 1974 – a third generation operation primarily growing cotton, along with wheat, grain and alfalfa.
Anderson has a long history of dedicated industry service having served as the NCC's chairman in 2004, its vice chairman in 2003, as a NCC director in 2002 and as the Southwest Region's vice chairman of American Cotton Producers from 1996-02. He chaired the NCC's Crop Insurance Committee from 1995-01.
He has been active in Texas, where is the chairman of the Texas Boll Weevil Eradication Foundation, a position he has held since '97. He also was the state committee chairman of the Texas Farm Service Agency from 1997-01.
In presenting the Baker award, NCC Chairman Wally Darneille, a West Texas cooperative marketing executive, said Anderson – during his tenure as NCC chairman -- led the organization's efforts at avoiding damaging amendments to U.S. farm law and protecting the interests of U.S. cotton in international trade agreements.
Among other contributions Anderson made that year were his testimony before the House Agriculture Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management regarding a mid-term review of the 2002 farm bill; representing U.S. agriculture and the cotton industry as part of a high-level delegation that traveled to Burkina Faso for a ministerial on science and technology and to visit the cotton growing regions of that country; meeting with the U.S. ambassador to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva regarding the framework text for WTO agricultural negotiation; and leading U.S. cotton industry efforts to shape constructive trade relations with China during meetings with top officials in Beijing and Shanghai – including encouraging the use of cotton standards to facilitate U.S. cotton exports.
Following his service as chairman, Woody has remained active in NCC leadership. He was elected vice chairman of the Committee for the Advancement of Cotton in 2010. He also performed yeoman's work as the chairman of the NCC's Farm Policy Task Force, a position he has held since 2005 and where he led efforts for industry consensus on the industry's priorities with the 2007 and 2014 farm bills.
The recipient of many industry honors, Woody received Cotton Grower magazine's Cotton Achievement Award in 2007. In 2008, he received the Texas Tech University's Gerald W. Thomas Award as the Outstanding Agriculturalist for Production. He is a 1974 graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor's degree in Journalism and Public Relations. He and his wife, Susan, have two children and three grandchildren.
Previous Harry S. Baker award honorees include cotton producers -- Duke Barr, Bruce Brumfield, Lloyd Cline, Robert Coker, Bruce Heiden, Kenneth Hood, Bill Lovelady, Bob McLendon, Frank Mitchener, Jimmy Sanford, Jack Stone and Charlie Youngker; ginners -- Lon Mann and Charlie Owen; merchants -- William B. Dunavant, Jr., and Bill Lawson; cooperative official -- Woods Eastland; textile manufacturer -- Duke Kimbrell; association executives -- Gaylon Booker, Neal Gillen, Albert Russell, Earl Sears and B.F. Smith; Congressional members -- Senators Thad Cochran (R-MS) and Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) and Representatives Larry Combest and Charles Stenholm; and USDA official -- Charlie Cunningham.