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CCFB News» April 2023

CCFB Foundation Scholar Winners Announced

04/18/2023 @ 12:15 pm

The Board of Directors of the Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation has selected three individuals as recipients of the 2023 Scholarship Program. Elijah Floerke of Orland Park was awarded the Howard Paarlberg Excellence in Agriculture Scholarship. Receiving general farm and food scholarships were Matthew Smits of Sauk Village and Amelia Niedbalec of Mundelein. A total of $9,000 of scholarship funds were distributed.


Howard Paarlberg Excellence in Agriculture Scholarship

This scholarship is designed to honor Mr. Howard Paarlberg, the first President of the Foundation and President of the Farm Bureau for 16 years. The recipient of this scholarship carries the prestige of being the top-rated applicant and a greater financial reward for the individual.



Elijah Floerke – Howard Paarlberg Excellence in Agriculture recipient

Floerke attends Illinois State University and is majoring in Agribusiness. He plans to study abroad this summer in France to grow his knowledge of agriculture and to gain an understanding of the business side of ag. Elijah is the son of Jeff & Janelle Floerke of Orland Park.                                             





Matthew Smits – General Agriculture Scholarship

Smits attends Purdue University and plans to graduate from the College of Agriculture with a degree in Horticulture with a concentration in production and management. He hopes to expand and improve the productivity and efficiency of his family farm after he graduates. Matthew is the son of Carl & Debra Smits of Sauk Village.        





Amelia Niedbalec General Agriculture Scholarship

Niedbalec will attend the University of Missouri with a major in Biology and will be exploring the field of agriculture. Amelia is the daughter of Mariusz Niedbalec of Mundelein.








The Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation was established by the Cook County Farm Bureau to carry out charitable, literary, and educational work in Agriculture. The Foundation Board established the Agricultural Scholarship Program to provide financial assistance to students pursuing education for agricultural careers and to encourage the best and brightest young minds to return to Agriculture as their chosen career.




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