GRAND RAPIDS – Michigan Farm Bureau’s (MFB) President Carl Bednarski recognized St. Clair County Farm Bureau member Stacey Lauwers as the organization’s 2018 Presidential Volunteer of the Year, during his annual address at their 99th annual meeting at DeVos Place. The Presidential Volunteer of the Year award recognizes a farmer member who has exhibited a commitment to a specific program or event in their community.
“Stacey is dedicated to helping others understand agriculture, and she works diligently to build a team of volunteers who have successfully delivered numerous consumer and youth educational events in St. Clair county over the past ten years,” said President Carl Bednarski. Lauwers is the chair of St. Clair County Farm Bureau’s Promotion and Education (P&E) Committee, and she also serves on the Michigan Farm Bureau’s State P&E Committee, holding the position of vice chair for the past two years.
As stated by her nominators, Lauwers is the reason St. Clair County Farm Bureau has a P&E Committee. Stacey is very well organized, enthusiastic, and willing to share the story of agriculture any time. Stacey knows how to motivate volunteers and find jobs to fit each of their personalities and strengths. Stacey coordinates, organizes, and runs the county’s Project RED (Rural Education Day) program that has grown to reach more than 700 4th grade students throughout St. Clair County, guided by over 70 volunteers. The program has become so popular, they consistently have a waiting list of schools that want to attend.
A graduate of Central Michigan University with a B.S. in both Science and Education, Lauwers has helped lead the continued growth of Agriculture in the Classroom efforts on the MFB State P&E Committee, along with helping to bring MFB’s Food, Agriculture and Resources in Motion (FARM) Science Lab mobile classroom from concept to reality.
Along with her commitment to Farm Bureau, Lauwers serves on the Capac FFA Advisory Board, the Farm Service Agency Board, and is a Farmers’ Advisory Council Member for America's Farmers Grow Rural Education, sponsored by the Monsanto Fund, which partners with farmers across the U.S. to support rural schools by offering grants, focused on enhancing STEM education and curriculum. She and her husband Mike, along with their son, operate a fourth-generation family farm, growing alfalfa, soybeans and wheat.
Lauwers received a gift certificate, as well as a $2,000 award to help her continue agricultural promotion efforts.