Carlisle brothers honored at Del. Ag Industry Dinner

DOVER, Del. (Jan. 24, 2017) — Brothers Keith and Richard Carlisle, who have been farming near Greenwood since the 1960s, were honored for their service and contributions during last week’s Delaware Agriculture Industry Dinner presented with the Secretary’s Award for Distinguished Service to Delaware Agriculture.
“Keith and Richard Carlisle have been actively serving and leading Delaware’s farming community for five decades,” said Delaware Secretary of Agriculture Ed Kee, who presented the award jointly with Acting USDA Secretary of Agriculture Michael Scuse at the annual dinner. “They have been involved in almost every agricultural organization in the state, helped their fellow farmers selflessly, and tirelessly worked to promote agriculture.
“They have been innovators and supporters of research, and have always stood ready to lend a helping hand.”
Eventually, the brothers divided the family farm into two operations for estate and succession purposes, facilitating entry of the next generation.
Keith’s son, Will, and Richard’s sons, Richard Jr. and Cameron, are all involved in the farms.
“That was a very forward-thinking, creative move that will keep the Carlisle family in farming for years to come,” Kee said.
Both graduates of Bridgeville High School, Richard and Keith grew up in a family whose farming roots in Delaware date back to the Civil War.
After graduating from the University of Delaware with agriculture degrees — Keith in 1964 and Richard in 1967 — they returned to the family farm.
Over the years, they have grown corn, soybeans, wheat, barley, lima beans, sweet corn, peppers, pickling cucumbers and watermelon.
Both are past winners of the Distinguished Service Award from the Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association of Delaware.
Richard has sat on the Delaware Soybean Board, held offices in the Delaware Farm Bureau and been active in the University of Delaware’s Ag Alumni Association.
Keith has served as Delaware’s representative on the board of directors of Agway and on the board of the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village, and also earned the University of Delaware’s Agricultural Alumni Award for Outstanding Service, or the Worrilow Award.
Keith is married to Carol, and the couple has two sons. Richard is married to Kathy, and they have two sons and a daughter.
The Agricultural Industry Dinner, in its 46th year, was attended by more than 400 people, including farmers, business leaders and elected officials.
It is sponsored by the Delaware Council of Farm Organizations.
Speaking at the dinner, newly inaugurated Gov. John Carney said agriculture is one of the key components of his administration’s transition plan.
“The key is… the family farmers, some 2,400, and the idea that we can’t be successful unless those individual family farms are successful,” Carney said.
Along with Carney’s appointment of Scuse to succeed Kee as Delaware agriculture secretary, he announced Kenny Bounds, former governmental relations officer and senior vice president at MidAtlantic Farm Credit as a new deputy agriculture secretary with current deputy Austin Short.