Jo-Ann Chason of Hydes, Maryland, was honored with the 2012 AGA Distinguished Service Award at the recent National Guernsey Convention held in Portland, Oregon. Jo-Ann has attended every National Guernsey Convention since 1991, when she was selected as the National Guernsey Princess. In 1996 she coordinated the National Queen Contest when her home state hosted the National Guernsey Convention. She has provided her services with a smile to the queen program ever since. She also works tirelessly during the National Guernsey Convention to ensure that the AGA Youth Awards Banquet goes off without a hitch. She developed the script for this event several years ago and works throughout the convention to update it with names of winners, sponsors and judges to ensure that all are recognized during the Youth Banquet. Jo-Ann even attended the 2002 convention in California in a wheelchair with a cumbersome cast on both of her broken feet and fulfilled her duties without a complaint.
Jo-Ann grew up showing Guernseys on her parents’ ROHA Farm and continues to breed Registered Guernseys and work with youth to show them. She is a 4-H leader for Baltimore County, Maryland, and is the Vice President of Baltimore County Farm Bureau. She is a Fellow of LEAD Maryland Foundation, an intensive two-year fellowship program designed to develop leaders in the agricultural industry. Jo-Ann is also Vice President of Maryland Cooperative GBA and gives her time and expertise by running their “Milk-It” fundraiser at the Maryland State Fair. This involves having four cows and all the required supplies at the Maryland State Fair for eleven days so that the public can learn to hand milk a cow and be educated about the dairy industry.