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Recipients of ACU Aggie awards announced at banquet

For immediate release
Oct. 21, 2002

The Department of Agriculture and Environment at Abilene Christian University announced the recipients of the Outstanding Aggie Alumnus Award and the Young Professional Award during the Aggie Club Homecoming annual barbecue and banquet October 19.

The Young Professional Award, given to ACU alumni who have been working in the field of agriculture or environmental science for less than ten years and who have various accomplishments that indicate promising contributions to family, ACU, community, church and career was presented to co-recipients Chris Shanks and Scott Hughes. The Outstanding Aggie Alumnus Award, given to ACU alumni who have been working in the field of agriculture or environmental science for at least ten years and who exhibit outstanding contributions to their church, family, community, ACU and career, was presented to Phil Berry.

Shanks, originally from Capitan, N.M., graduated from ACU in 1994 with a bachelor's degree in range and agronomy and went on to receive a master's degree in range science from Texas Tech University. Shanks is currently an engineer with Bechtel Savannah River, Inc., a co-founder of Southpoint Consulting Group, LLC and director of GIS development for the group. Shanks and his wife, Jacinda, and daughter, Gracie, currently reside in Aiken, S.C.

Hughes graduated from ACU in 1995 with a degree in animal science and is now working for Veterinarian's Outlet in Dublin. He is a member of the National Mastitis Council and is recognized as an expert in his field by veterinarians, as well as a leader in his church. Hughes and his wife, Kacey, helped develop the young adults' Bible class at their local church. Scott currently resides in Stephenville with his wife and his daughter, Sydney.

Phil Berry was named the Outstanding Aggie Alumnus of the year. Berry graduated from ACU in 1990 with a degree in range science and went on to complete his master's degree in range science at New Mexico State University in 1992. Berry was also named Young Professional of the Year in 1997.

Currently, Berry works in Fairfield as an environmental specialist at TXU-Big Brown Mine. Prior to his work in Texas, Phil worked as Reclamation Coordinator for TransAlta Centralia Mining LLC in Centralia, Wash., senior environmental specialist for GL Environmental in Rio Rancho, N.M., and senior biologist and soil scientist for METRIC Corporation in Albuquerque, N.M. He and his wife, Renee, have two sons, Joshua and Caleb.

"The persons chosen this year, as well as in the past, are respected in their chosen professions while maintaining balance in all aspects of their lives," said Dr. Foy Mills, chair of the Department of Agriculture and Environment. "Additionally, they have chosen to make substantial personal investment in supporting the Department of Agriculture and Environment on an ongoing basis."

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If you are a member of the media who would like more information about this release, please contact Wendy Kilmer, university news coordinator.

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Last Update: December 17, 2007
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