BOCA RATON, Fla. (Nov. 28, 2018) – Today the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) honored William F. Willard, Sr. (Billy) and Bob Willard with the ARA Distinguished Service Award for their support for ARA and the agricultural retail industry.
“Willard Agri-Service is the gold standard for ag retailers,” said ARA President and CEO Daren Coppock. “Billy and Bob are known for their engagement in the industry and their community. They have hosted countless educational programs and tours for federal agency officials, industry partners, and others at their facilities, which benefits all ag retailers. We are forever grateful for their dedication to the association and the greater good of the industry.”
Selected by the ARA Executive Committee, the ARA Distinguished Service Award honors individual members of the association who have provided support above and beyond that of the traditional member and volunteer responsibilities.
“The Willards operate a company in a politically challenging environment, which has necessitated extensive community involvement by Billy, Bob, and the entire company,” said Coppock. “Through their engagement, they have engendered trust and respect from their neighbors, and set an example for their peers in the business.”
Billy serves as CEO for Willard Agri-Service and is a son of company founder De Willard. He also operates the family farm with his son Billy Jr., which gives Billy the unique perspective of being both a farmer customer and a supplier.
Bob is a past chairman of ARA, and currently serves as chairman of the Willard Agri-Service Board of Directors and spends most of his time in the crop supply business. He is also a board member of the Chesapeake Bank and Trust and Centennial Ag Supply.
The Willards were honored during ARA’s 2018 Conference and Expo in Boca Raton, Fla. The event will continue through Thursday, Nov. 29.
Thursday’s program will feature remarks from U.S. Department of Agriculture Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Service Bill Northey. Tejas Bhatt, senior director for food safety innovations for Walmart, will close the conference with his keynote entitled, “A New Era in Food Transparency Powered by Blockchain.”
More information about the ARA Conference and Expo can be found at www.aradc.org/conference, or on ARA’s social media channels.