CORVALLIS - Ralph Hart of Island City, a long-time Oregon State University Extension agent in Union County, is one of 41 men and women who were honored as Diamond Pioneers Tuesday, Oct. 14, by the OSU College of Agricultural Sciences.

Hart and others added to the College's Diamond Pioneer Registry were guests at a luncheon hosted by Dean Thayne Dutson at the CH2M HILL Alumni Center in Corvallis. Guest speaker was John V. Byrne, OSU president emeritus and a fellow member of the 2003 Diamond Pioneers.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Diamond Pioneer Registry, which honors those 75 years and older for their contributions to agriculture, OSU and their communities. The award, began when the college observed its 75th anniversary, has been given to 746 persons, including this year's group. Hart was nominated for the registry by the staff of the Union County Extension office.

After 18 years as a dairy farmer, Hart started with Extension in Idaho. He joined the Union County staff in 1969 and remained as Extension agent and staff chair until he retired in 1989. Since 1992, he has worked part time in seed certification in Union, Baker and Wallowa counties.

Although retired, Hart continues his long interest in youth. He is a director of the Blue Mountain 4-H Center and is co-chair of the 4-H/Future Farmers of America auction committee for the Eastern Oregon Livestock Show.

He also serves as a livestock judge at shows in Oregon, Washington, California and Idaho.

Others honored include (by city): Adams: Virginia Tubbs; Baker City: Fred Warner; Central Point: Kenneth Beebe; Cornelius: Don B. Anderson; Corvallis: Alfred Haunold, John V. Byrne, Charles Leach, William McGuire, H. Joe Myers, Burdette Peterson, Roger Peterson and Dale Weber; Hillsboro: Peter Jensen; Halsey: Vincent D. Dobbin and Glen Grossen; John Day: Arlene Oliver; Jordan Valley: Andrew Greeley; Keizer: Harold Youngberg; Klamath Falls: James Elings and James Kerns; Moro: John Shipley and Donald Thompson; Ontario: Keith Gressley, Isao Kameshige and William Panike; Pendleton: Robert Ramig and Virgil Rupp; Phoenix: David Lowry; Portland: H. Ronald Cameron; Shedd: Len Forster and Floyd Smith; Sisters: Don Grabe; The Dalles: John R. Thienes and Eldon Wagenblast; Tigard: Carl Froude and Beverly Froude; Tillamook: Carl and Irene Bosch; Vale: John Bishop; Wamic: Everett Metzentine.

Click photos to see a full-size version. Right click and save image to download.


Loretta Austin, 541-737-5813