Young Rural Ambassador winner 2017

WINNER: Young Rural Ambassador winner Lachy Johnson, representing South East and Border region, with runner-up, Rebekah Starick, Central region, at the 2017 awards night. Photo: Stock Journal

WINNER: Young Rural Ambassador winner Lachy Johnson, representing South East and Border region, with runner-up, Rebekah Starick, Central region, at the 2017 awards night. Photo: Stock Journal

Lachy Johnson, a 19-year-old apprentice mechanic from Bordertown, has been named South Australia’s Young Rural Ambassador for 2017.

Representing the Mundulla Agricultural, Horticultural & Floricultural Society (A, H & F) and the South East and Border Show Association, Lachy was named the winner at the Young Rural Ambassador Award State Final by the Agricultural Societies Council of South Australia in Adelaide on Friday night.

Lachy began a school-based Agricultural Mechanical Apprenticeship at Wise Farm Equipment where he is currently employed as well working at the local hardware store and running his own lawn mowing round.

His hobbies include collecting and restoring old tractors, cars, engines and machinery and he volunteers at Clayton Farm.

His involvement at the Mundulla Show includes being an exhibitor since a young age, assisting with the planning, set up and clean up with the trade sites and other areas of the show and taking on the role of Trade Site Convenor next year.

“I am thrilled and looking forward to the opportunities and experiences ahead after winning the state final, like networking with other youth and increasing my confidence in public speaking,” he said.

“Over the next 12 months I hope to attend as many country shows as I can and bring back ideas to my own show.”

Rebekah Starick from Central and the Angaston A, H & F Society was named runner up and is currently studying a Bachelor of Agricultural Science.

PIRSA Director Agriculture, Food and Wine Justin Ross said the winner and finalists contribute greatly to country shows around the state.

“The State Government is proud to support the Young Rural Ambassador Award, which recognises dedicated and committed young people in the agricultural show movement,” Mr Ross said.

“I congratulate the winner, Lachy Johnson from Bordertown, the runner up Rebekah Starick and finalists of this year’s award and look forward to seeing them shine brightly.

“In 2015–16, South Australia’s agriculture, food and wine industries generated $18.6 billion in revenue, accounted for 45% of the state’s merchandise exports, and employed about 147,400 people or one in five working South Australians.

“The state’s regions are crucial to South Australia’s prosperity, contributing about $25.4 billion to the state’s economy. They produce about half of our merchandise exports, with just 29% of the state’s population.”

The Young Rural Ambassador Award highlights the importance of youth in the agricultural show movement. Other young members of the community are encouraged to enter for this year. For more information contact Faye Young on 0402 060 001.