Cave recently was informed that he was a 2010 winner of the national award. This award is given to agents with the cooperative extension service whose programs have made a significant impact in their counties. He was recognized at the state and national level for winning the award, and the Surry County Board of Commissioners presented him with a plaque at a recent meeting.
Dr. Deborah Crandall, district extension director, was present at the commissioners meeting, and she spoke in glowing terms of Cave and his achievements.
Commissioner Jimmy Miller said, “It’s been a pleasure for us to know Bryan and work with him.”
Commissioner Jim Harrell Jr. said, “We have some stars in Surry County, and Bryan is certainly one of them.”
Recipients of the Distinguished Service Award have to have been working for the cooperative extension service for at least 10 years. Cave has been with the service for 22 years and has been county director since 2007. He had to submit an application for the award, but others also had to recommend him.
“I’m pretty happy to have won that,” Cave remarked. “I was kind of surprised, given the fact that only a small number receive the award.”
He believes he was given the award based on his work over the years with livestock efforts, such as the mineral utilization program, and more recently for his contributions to the new Pilot Mountain Pride agricultural center in Pilot Mountain.
“It’s based on a cumulative career,” Cave explained.
He wants to make sure that his family, friends and the people he works with know that he couldn’t have won this award without their help and support over the years.
This is not the first national award Cave has received. He was recognized several years ago for his work on the Farm Animal Day for schools. In 1994, he received an Outstanding Young Agent award.
Cave is a native of Surry County. He graduated from Surry Central High School then went on to attend Surry Community College and receive bachelor and masters degrees from N.C. State University. He said he feels fortunate to be able to work for the extension office in Surry County.
“Usually you don’t get to work in your home county,” Cave noted.
The director said he first became involved with the extension service as a youth when he participated in 4-H programs. He decided in college that he wanted to work in the community with farmers, so the cooperative extension office was a natural fit for him. Cave said his favorite part of his job is working with farmers directly, visiting their farms and talking to them. He also enjoys working on economic development efforts.
Cave believes the cooperative extension service is an essential part of the community. He said, “We’re an unbiased source of information. We provide information that people can’t typically get anywhere else.”
The office can offer people information on a variety of topics through a partnership with N.C. State University. Cave wants people to know that the extension service is not there for agriculture projects only.
“We touch a lot of different lives,” Cave remarked.
Contact Meghann Evans at email@example.com or 719-1952.