published: Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Gary Lee named FFA Hall of Fame inductee
By SAMANTHA GHOLAR
SEBRING -- Congratulations are in order for a well-known Sebring instructor and leader, Gary Lee, as he becomes one of the newest members of the Florida FFA Hall of Fame.
A recent press release revealed Lee as one of five inductees. The others are Harold Ray Clark, the late Alfred Rankin Cox Jr., the late Donald Charles Hurst and Winton Oziel Whittle.
Lee was an agriculture teacher and coordinator of career and technical education in Highlands and Polk counties for 33 years before retiring in 2006. He also served as a consultant for the Florida Department of Education for three years before moving from Polk to Highlands County in 1978.
"Needless to say I was speechless," Lee told the News-Sun Tuesday. "I had no idea. Mr. Webb, who teaches agriculture at Sebring High School and his students, they pulled a fast one on me. I've nominated many teachers throughout the years and some have went on to be inducted, but I've never had the tables turned on me."
Lee's excellent leadership roles to the FFA alumni organization at both the local and state levels has opened doors for many and lead him to become the recipient of the National FFA Alumni Achievement Award and Legion of Merit Award.
Lee currently is a part-time employee of the Highlands County School District. After retirement from the classroom, Lee continues his work as a resource teacher with the high school and middle schools in the district.
"Florida FFA owes an immense debt of gratitude to these outstanding leaders," said Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam in a press relase. "Their dedicated service in agriculture education helped make FFA the outstanding student organization recognized throughout the state."
The induction ceremony and awards banquet will take place on Oct. 1 in Haines City at the Florida FFA Leadership Training Center.
Lee is thankful for the recognition.
"I count it as a blessing. It is one of the highlights of my career," said Lee.
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