Students win Pride of Dakota essay, poster contests

BISMARCK – Students from Bismarck, Grand Forks, Hebron and the Minot Air Force Base were the winners in the 2012 Pride of Dakota essay and poster contests.

“It is very encouraging to see how much these young people know about the role of agriculture and how they communicate it so well,” Agricu1lture Commissioner Doug Goehring said at a Thursday news conference. “These essays and posters clearly explain and illustrate the theme ‘Why Is Agriculture Important to North Dakota.'”

The news conference was held in the State Capitol's Memorial Hall on National Agriculture Day.

“North Dakota bankers are proud to help North Dakota's family farmers and ranchers lead the nation in the production of more than a dozen important commodities,” said Rick Clayburgh, president and CEO of the North Dakota Bankers Association (NDBA). “We are also proud to sponsor this competition that helps connect our young people to agriculture.”

This year's winners are:

Savanah Canen, 13, a student at Hebron Public School, won the essay contest.

Ari Jenson, 10, a student at Dakota Elementary School at the Minot Air Force Base, won the poster contest.

Paige Larson, 14, Larimore High School, and Ethan Horner, 14, Middle Valley School, Grand Forks, were the second and third-place winners in the essay contest.

Ping Kuang, 10, Grimsrud Elementary School, Bismarck, and Andrew Marabella,10, North Plains Elementary School, Minot Air Force Base, took second and third in the poster contest.

The winners received monetary awards from the NDBA and digital music players from the North Dakota Department of Agriculture.

The Pride of Dakota program fosters the development and growth of small businesses and especially businesses that are farm-based or rely on agricultural commodities. Pride of Dakota member companies can participate in cooperative promotion and marketing events; receive representation at local, state, regional, national, and international trade shows; and take part in educational opportunities. More than 500 companies are Pride of Dakota members. Authorized by the Legislature, the program is administered by the North Dakota Department of Agriculture.