Agriculture: WAYNE F. PRYOR
PRESIDENT, VIRGINIA FARM BUREAU FEDERATION, RICHMOND
Pryor has a desk job, but he rarely misses an opportunity to get outside.
“I will never tire of watching the sun come up over the farm in the morning, and then watching it set in the evening,” says the lifelong Goochland County hay and grain farmer. But he’s devoted decades to the Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, starting as a board member in 1988, he says, because farmers need to advocate for themselves to ensure the industry’s viability for future generations.
With about 850 employees and more than 132,000 members across 88 county bureaus, Pryor has led the state’s largest nonprofit agricultural membership organization and advocacy group for the state’s largest industry since 2006. He helped create the annual governor’s conference on agricultural trade, which started in 2008 and recently has been advocating for rural broadband expansion as a key to his industry’s future prosperity.
Pryor serves as president, CEO and chairman of the Virginia Farm Bureau’s Mutual Insurance Co. and Federation AgPAC, and the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture, Innovation and Rural Sustainability. He’s also president of the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom and has been recognized for his dedication to agricultural education by the national FFA (formerly Future Farmers of America) and Virginia Tech.