(House of Representatives - March 20, 2017)

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[Page H2188]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentleman from 
Louisiana (Mr. Abraham) for 5 minutes.
  Mr. ABRAHAM. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize two of my 
constituents, Ray Young of Wisner and Charles ``Buck'' Vandersteen of 
Alexandria, for their recent induction into the Louisiana Agriculture 
Hall of Distinction.
  Since growing up on his family farm, Ray Young has dedicated his life 
and career to farming. After earning a degree in agriculture from 
Louisiana Tech and a master's in entomology from LSU, Ray went on to 
pioneer the stale seedbed conservation tillage system, known today as 
no-till, used across the South to enhance crop production.
  In 1989, Ray presented to Congress an application to charter the 
Federal Land Bank of North Louisiana. He has served on the board of 
directors for the Federal Land Bank, as a board chairman of the 
Louisiana Land Bank, and as a leader of numerous State and Federal 
agricultural organizations.
  Ray and his family still farm cotton, soybeans, sweet potatoes, Irish 
potatoes, corn, vegetables, cattle, hay, wheat, and pine trees.
  He is a tremendous example of a Louisiana farmer making his life and 
a living off his land. His insight is always valuable to me when I am 
working on agricultural policy for our Nation.
  Buck Vandersteen has spent 34 years presiding over the 4,000-plus 
members of the Louisiana Forestry Association, is a past president of 
the Southern Forest Heritage Museum and a past president of the 
National Council of Forestry executives.
  During that time, Buck has helped pass the Forest Productivity 
Program to get part of the State's severance taxes distributed to 
forest landowners as cost share for replanting. It is recognized as one 
of the top programs in the Nation. He has been instrumental in 
advocating forestry education at the technical school and university 
levels so that we can have sustainable and productive working forests.
  Buck continues to serve the forest industry today, and I look forward 
to working with him in my role on the Working Forest Caucus on behalf 
of foresters across the country.
  Mr. Speaker, Louisiana is one of the top agricultural States in the 
Nation, and I am proud to serve on the Agriculture Committee here in 
Washington to represent our State's farmers, foresters, and ranchers.
  But the real contributions to our State agricultural prowess can be 
traced back to folks like Ray Young and Buck Vandersteen, men who have 
spent their lives enhancing the industry that is so vital to Louisiana. 
Congratulations once again for being inducted into the Louisiana 
Agricultural Hall of Distinction. It is an honor that is well deserved.