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Sandy an agricultural powerhouse

The most recent news that Sandy-area nurseryman Barry Bushue - already president of the Oregon Farm Bureau - was elected vice president of the American Farm Bureau prompts us to take pause and revel in the fact that our community is a national leader in agriculture.

Think about all the success we've seen. Bushue recently was elected to his fifth two-year term as the state's Farm Bureau leader, and now he's bringing his Boring-area values to the national stage.

That also brings to mind Ed Luttrell, who not only has been heavily involved in the Boring-Damascus Grange but has served at the national level of that agriculture-based organization. In November, Luttrell was elected the 22nd president/master of the National Grange. Luttrell is the first Oregonian to lead the 141-year-old Grange and only the second picked from west of Nebraska.

His home Grange, Boring-Damascus, has seen a resurgence and a retooling for the 21st century that has made the national organization take notice. Luttrell wants to bring Boring's energy and ideas across the country.

Of course, that success multiplies when we look to the younger generation. In late 2006, Sandy High FFA student Tyrel Meader became the school's first student to receive top honors at the national level when he placed first in the Creed Speaking competition in Indianapolis.

In 2005, the Sandy FFA chapter also captured nationwide attention when the Agricultural Issues team brought home fourth place.

And of course, our FFA and 4-H students constantly impress us with their strong showing at the Clackamas County Fair and Oregon State Fair.

Let's take a moment and celebrate the fact that not only are we staying connected to our agricultural roots in our growing, changing community, but we're leading the nation in the field.