GREENVILLE — Brad Lentz, Agriculture Program director at Edison State Community College, was presented with the Darke County Chamber of Commerce’s Agriculture Achievement Award during the Chamber’s Agribusiness Day event on Friday, March 25. The agriculture program at Edison State received the Agricultural Advocacy Award.
“Within a short span of time, Mr. Brad Lentz has designed and offered leading-edge agribusiness courses and degrees,” said Edison State President Dr. Doreen Larson. “The Edison State program is defined by frequent trips to regional businesses, mentorships by agricultural leaders, and internship experiences that hone technical skills and support individual development of professionals in agriculture careers.
“We’re honored to have a place of recognition among those selected by the Chamber for over 60 years in support of the critical industry of agriculture in Darke County.”
Each year, the Chamber presents a farmer or family who resides in Darke County and is actively involved in agriculture and the community with the Agriculture Achievement Award. The award is based on the recipient’s commitment to innovation, community involvement, good land stewardship, and being an exemplary example for future generations.
A Greenville native, Lentz has over 20 years of experience in the agriculture industry. He became the Agriculture Program director at Edison State in August 2016. His experience as an educator includes having served as an agriculture teacher at Ansonia Local Schools and the school’s FFA adviser, where he mentored an average of 125 members per year and supervised the school’s greenhouse and garden center.
Lentz has been actively involved with agricultural organizations, such as the Ohio Association of Agricultural Educators, National Association of Agricultural Educators, Ohio and National Education Association, Ohio Farm Bureau, and AmericanHort. In 2019, he helped organize a group of Edison State agriculture students to assist farmers and families in Hamburg, Iowa, who were devastated by flooding.
“Under Brad’s leadership, Edison State’s agriculture program is thriving and has grown from a single degree program in 2016 to multiple associate degrees and certificates in 2022,” said Chad Beanblossom, vice president of Enrollment Management and Regional Campus Operations.
“Brad is enthusiastic about agriculture and passes that excitement on to his students each day. He prides himself in providing quality education and ensures his students graduate with the knowledge and skills necessary to enter the workforce, join the family farm, or transfer to a four-year university.”
The chamber also presents a recipient with its Agricultural Advocacy Award annually. To be eligible, an individual or organization must serve the Darke County community and be committed to promoting the industry, educating individuals on the industry’s importance and value, and preparing students for careers in agriculture.
“Agriculture continues to be critical to life and the economy of west-central Ohio, which makes Edison State’s commitment to agricultural education and training so important,” said Randy Gardner, chancellor of the Ohio Department of Higher Education. “This new honor is additional evidence of Edison State’s value to the region.”
Edison State’s agriculture program is offered exclusively through Edison State at Greenville. To learn more about the program, visit www.edisonohio.edu/programs or call 937-778-7890.