Gov. Mary Fallin presented two Oklahoma Farm Bureau members with her Governor’s Agriculture Awards May 9 during a ceremony hosted by the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry at the state Capitol.
Keith Kisling of Burlington received the Governor’s Outstanding Achievement in Agriculture Award. This is the highest award given by the Governor to honor distinguished Oklahoma agriculture producers. The prestigious award honors leaders in the agriculture industry who exemplify personal values, performance, and achievement. Recipients are recognized for having high standards of conduct, leadership, innovation, and accomplishments in agriculture and as serving as a role model for Oklahoma agriculture’s young people.
“This is a Kisling Farms’ award in my opinion,” he said. “I’m glad for the honor and it is really a big honor, but I couldn’t be up there if it wasn’t for my family.”
As full-time farmers and ranchers, Kisling and his wife, Marlene, have built a thriving agricultural operation growing wheat, wheat pasture, cattle, irrigated corn, soybeans, alfalfa hay, grass hay and sorghum. The couple also operated a feedlot for stocker cattle.
In addition to his roles in production agriculture, Kisling has and continues to champion the ag industry not only locally and statewide, but nationally and internationally.
An Alfalfa County Farm Bureau member, Kisling has served on the OKFB board of directors since 2014 and served for four years as Oklahoma’s representative on the American Farm Bureau Federation wheat committee. In 2006, the Kisling family was chosen OKFB Farm Family of the Year, and Keith received the Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award from OKFB the same year.
“The Farm Bureau has meant so much to me,” he said. “I owe a lot of thanks to them.”
Also on Wednesday, Jimmy W. Kinder of Walters, received Governor Fallin’s Agriculture Environmental Stewardship Award. The award recognizes Oklahoma agriculturalists who are leaders in developing and adopting outstanding environmentally innovative agricultural practices. This award highlights the efforts of an Oklahoma agriculture producer who is a steward of the environment and is dedicated to conserving the natural resources of Oklahoma while helping to ensure a continued supply of food and fiber.
“I am overwhelmed to be the recipient of Governor Fallin’s Agriculture Environmental Stewardship Award,” Kinder said. “To me, this award recognizes a family tradition of over four generations to feed consumers from the land that God allows us to manage.”
Kinder is a fourth-generation farmer and rancher from Cotton County and an early innovator in Oklahoma agriculture. His family farms wheat, canola, sesame, and grain sorghum. They also grow grass and run stocker cattle.
Kinder has implemented the agricultural production methods of no-tillage cropping, crop rotation, cover crops and stocker cattle grazing. His agricultural production system offers superior economic, agronomic, environmental and social benefits.
A member of the Cotton County Farm Bureau, Kinder has served the organization at every level, serving as the Cotton County Farm Bureau president from 1990-2011, before becoming a state board member. He has served on the OKFB board of directors from 2011 to the present, with part of that time as vice president.
Also during the ceremony, Randy Gilbert of Tecumseh received Governor Fallin’s Outstanding Public Service in Agriculture Award and the Governor’s Outstanding Legacy in Agriculture Award was presented posthumously to Larry Watkins of Stillwater.