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Willins named Sussex FB Family of Year
By CAROL KINSLEY
BRIDGEVILLE, Del. (Oct. 14, 2014) — The Willin family of Seaford was named 2014 Sussex County Farm Family of the Year at the county Farm Bureau’s annual meeting on Oct. 4.
Bill Satterfield was presented the Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award.
Willin Farms, located just west of Seaford, is owned and operated by the fifth generation, brothers R.C. Willin Jr. and J.C. Willin, along with their sons, Chad and Brent.
The family grows corn, soybeans, wheat and barley on 1,200 acres. In addition, they own and operate three poultry farms with a total capacity of 222,000 roaster birds.
Willin Farms has placed among the top corn producers in the state in National Corn Growers Association contests.
The Willins also have hosted agricultural field trips for federal representatives highlighting both agricultural and environmental practices.
R.C. and his wife, Faith, have two children, Chad and Maria, and five grandchildren.
R.C. has served as a member of several advisory committees, including Delaware Electric Cooperative, Sussex County Field Crops Program, Sussex County Poultry Extension Program, and has provided valuable leadership in helping secure funds to support University of Delaware Agricultural programs.
J.C. and his wife, Montine, have two children, Christie and Brent, and three grandchildren.
J.C. has been a member of the Seaford Volunteer Fire Department since 1986 and has served as president and vice president.
Burton Messick, introducing the family, said the Willins “have a long standing commitment to excellence with attention to detail.”
He added that he had served with R.C. Willin on several committees, “and he has always had the best interest of agriculture and farmers on those committees.”
Accepting the award, R.C. Willin said he was humbled by the award and honored to be part of Farm Bureau.
He appreciated being a farmer in Delaware, where “we can call [officials] on a first name basis for help and assistance any time we want.”
Although not a current Delaware resident, Bill Satterfield was born in Dover and graduated from Dover High School before attending Wake Forest University in North Carolina.
He is well-known for his work on the entire Delmarva Peninsula as executive director of the Delmarva Poultry Industry Inc., based in Georgetown, Del.
Presenting the award, Delaware Ag Secretary Ed Kee said he first met Satterfield in 1978. “Bill was first introduced to the agricultural community in 1984 when he was named farm news director at WSBY/WQHQ Radio in Salisbury. In 1986, he joined DPI as executive assistant.”
As DPI executive director, “he continued to work tirelessly for the poultry industry on the Delmarva Peninsula and is DPI’s official spokesman. ...
“He is always a strong advocate for the poultry industry and for ag in general.
“His knowledge of issues and rapport with policy makers, business leaders and news media has made him a valuable asset in articulating the poultry industry’s needs and positions in Sussex County and across Delmarva. ... He is articulate, honest and you know where he stands.”