Paying Tribute: Jim Pugh recognized for dedication and inspiration

Published 7:00 am Friday, August 4, 2023

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There’s a lot of hard work involved, but Jim Pugh sees plenty of benefits as well. The Charlotte County teacher was recently honored for his work teaching agriculture.

Each year, the Virginia Association of Agriculture recognizes educators who have hit a milestone in teaching agriculture. This year, Pugh, who teaches at Randolph-Henry High School, was honored for working 30 years in the agriculture department.

Growing up on a farm, Pugh is familiar with and has always had a love for all things agriculture related. Now, teaching agriculture to students gives them the opportunity to prepare the next generation for successful careers in the business or a lifetime of informed choices when it comes to global agriculture, food, fiber and natural resources.

“It’s just essential for life as we know it,” he said. “Agriculture is where we get food and fiber. The essentials for life come from the agriculture industry.”

According to Pugh, agriculture is more than just farming. It is a vital part of our country and everyone’s well-being as it provides animals and crops for food, fiber for clothing and lumber and other resources for building. Agriculture is an industry to look out for to protect the life everyone has grown accustomed to in this country.

Along with recognition for his years of work, Pugh also earned the Teachers of Teachers Award. This award recognizes that four of Pugh’s former students have also become agriculture teachers themselves.

“You know it’s rewarding as well to see them go on and succeed in their programs,” he said.

Teaching for this many years can come with some challenges but there are also many bright spots. Since Pugh has a genuine love for the subject matter, he loves to work with the students and teach them the many aspects of the agriculture field. The students get to work in the shop and in the operational farm to learn about production and farm management.

“It’s very rewarding working with students,” Jim Pugh said. “They have had a lot of accomplishments over the years with state wins with Future Farmers of America and also seeing their accomplishments after graduation.”

The Randolph-Henry FFA recently brought home numerous first-place wins from the Virginia Southeast area Rally in March. The winners included the Agricultural Mechanics Team, the Hippology Team, the Veterinary Science Team as well as first place in senior prepared public speaking.