North Dakota Farmers Union bestowed its highest youth achievement honor – the Torchbearer Award – on Madelyn Oster and Lane Veach, both of Ray, at the organization’s recent state convention, held virtually due to COVID-19.

The award recognizes students for their involvement in Farmers Union’s youth education program and requires five years of senior class work to enhance communication, leadership and teamwork skills, as well as business knowledge of cooperatives.

Twenty-eight young people earned the award. As Torchbearers, youth pledge to build a better world for all and a prosperous agriculture while practicing tolerance and brotherhood in order to “light the way to a peaceful world.”

Farmers Union operates one of the largest grassroots youth programs in the nation. More than 1,200 students, both rural and urban, annually participate in NDFU summer camps and educational classes. For more information, go to

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