Thompson Recognizes Pennsylvania Furnace Resident for Receiving National Agriculture Award

December 3, 2013

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson, PA-5, today delivered remarks congratulating constituent Eric Cowden, a resident of Pennsylvania Furnace, Centre County, Pennsylvania, for being awarded the National Future Farmers of America’s (FFA) highest honor, the FFA Honorary American Degree.  Thompson praised Cowden’s leadership in the field of agriculture and commitment to agricultural education. The full remarks and video footage are included below.  

Remarks as prepared.

"Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor Eric Cowden, a resident of Pennsylvania Furnace, Pennsylvania. This past month, Eric, a graduate of Penn State University, was recognized by the National Future Farmers of America with the organization’s highest honor -- The FFA Honorary American Degree.

As a youngster growing up on the family farm in Washington County, Pennsylvania, Eric was involved with the FFA like many students in rural communities -- showing steers, heifers, and lambs from a young age.

Upon graduating from Penn State with a degree in agricultural sciences and earning his Master’s in Business from Delaware Valley College, Eric went on to work for the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. There, he administered the Rural Youth grant program, led the county fair and agri-tourism division and eventually rose to director of the central region office for the department.

Eric also holds several leadership roles with the Marcellus Shale Coalition, bringing together two of Pennsylvania’s most historic and important industries: energy and agriculture.

Eric is well deserving of this honor. We thank him for his leadership in the field of agriculture and agricultural education.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I yield back."