|FEBRUARY 5, 2010 --
Jamie Jones, of the Jones Family Farms in Shelton, was named one of five finalists for the American Farm Bureau Association's Agricultural Achievement Award for 2010.
Jones and four runners-up each won a Case IH Farmall 31 Tractor, courtesy of Case IH. The first place winners, Aaron and Ashley Reding of Kentucky, won a Dodge Ram pick-up truck, according to the American Farm Bureau Association's Web site.
"I was thrilled to earn the award," Jones said in a statement, "because not only does it recognize the work being done on my family farm, but it brings national attention to Connecticut's agricultural accomplishments."
The American Farm Bureau is an 91-year-old industry organization that represents more than 6 million farming families across the country.
The Achievement Award recognizes young farmers and ranchers who have excelled in their farming or ranching operations and exhibited superior leadership abilities.
Participants are evaluated on a combination of their agricultural operation's growth and financial progress, Farm Bureau leadership and leadership outside the Farm Bureau.
Jones serves at the First Vice President of the Connecticut Farm Bureau, the President of the Connecticut Vineyard and Winery Association, and is a member of the Shelton Zoning Board of Appeals.
"Going back to my great grandparents, my family has a tradition of community service," Jones said in the statement. "So it's something I have always valued."
Jones has been working with his parents Terry and Jean Jones to manage their 400-acre farm, well known for its strawberries, blueberries, pumpkins and Christmas trees.
In 2004, Jones began the Jones Winery. The 14 wines served there have received their own awards, including the Raspberry Rhapsody earning the Best Wine in Show at the Big E Wine Competition in 2008.
Jones said he is excited to see his new tractor, which should arrive this spring in time for planting season.
"It will be great to show the tractor to my sons," Jones said in the statement. "They are five and two years old, so they are going to think it's pretty cool."