Agriculture News

August 18, 2016

Two receive top Women in Agriculture awards at state fair

kirkpatrick wia 2016 Sheryl Seib (left), of Seib Farms in Posey County, and Lisa Chaudion (right), executive director of the Indiana FFA Foundation, were named winners of the 2016 Purdue Extension Women in Agriculture awards. The awards recognize achievement and leadership in agriculture. (Purdue Agricultural Communication photo/Darrin Pack) Download image

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Purdue Extension has honored two Indiana women for their dedication and service to agriculture with the Women in Agriculture's top awards for leadership and achievement.

The awards were presented Wednesday (Aug. 17) as part of the lieutenant governor's Celebration of Agriculture program during the Indiana State Fair.

The Leadership Award, for a woman in an agribusiness or policymaking position, was given to Lisa Chaudion of Monroe County, executive director of the Indiana FFA Foundation.

The Achievement Award, which recognizes women who are directly involved in a home farming operation, was presented to Sheryl Seib of Seib Farms in Posey County.

"We need to spotlight women who are committed to the success of Indiana agriculture," said Danica Kirkpatrick, engagement program manager for Purdue University's College of Agriculture and co-chair of the Women in Agriculture awards committee. "We look for hard-working women who are dedicated to their communities and the industry. These recipients are very deserving of this recognition."

Chaudion began her work as a direct sales manager for Mycogen, a seed company of Dow AgroSciences. She then became the Indiana Department of Education's agriculture education specialist and Indiana Young Farmers' Association executive director for many years before starting in her current in 2011. She also was the first female to serve as president of the Indiana FFA.

Under Chaudion's leadership, the Indiana FFA has gained numerous charitable contributions, including $50,000 from Farm Credit Mid-America and $25,000 from Lilly Endowment Inc. for the Indiana FFA Leadership Center in Trafalgar. Her focus on fundraising for the center will provide leadership training to FFA members and opportunities for learning in the STEM disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Chaudion is vice president of the Indiana Rural Safety and Health Council and a member of the Indiana Young Farmers Association, Indiana Association of Agricultural Educators, National Association of Agricultural Educators, National Association of Supervisors of Agricultural Education and Indiana Farm Bureau.

Seib has been involved in many roles in Seib Farms for over 30 years. She often has been solely responsible for coordinating and carrying out events such as hosting local, state and national leaders and visitors in overseas trade missions.

As a preschool teacher and owner of Kinder Schule Academic Preschool for 27 years, Seib incorporated agriculture lessons and instilled in students an appreciation for agriculture in their community. She has served as an agriculture in the classroom volunteer for Indiana Farm Bureau Inc. since 1989, and the organization elected her as an agriculture cultural exchange ambassador to Czechoslovakia, Poland and Hungary in 1992.

In 1993, Seib became Posey County Farm Bureau's women's leader, holding the position for five years and returning to it from 2004 to 2009. She also became the first female president of the county farm bureau in 2009 and served until 2014.

Beginning in 2001, Seib served as a liaison to farm women in Ukraine at the request of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. She helped to organize a farmers' co-op and establish a government office for it, providing farmers greater access to government leaders and the law-making process there.

Women in Agriculture provides local, regional and statewide skill development programs; networking events that engage sponsors and stakeholders; and resources through multiple types of media. More information on the group is available at

Writer: Keith Robinson, 765-494-2722, 

Source: Danica Kirkpatrick, 765-494-9113,

Agricultural Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Keith Robinson,
Agriculture News Page

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