Shelby Watson Hampton lives by her family’s motto: “Work hard, play hard, and treat others well.” Thus the reason her family farm is thriving.
Hampton of Brandywine, Maryland, is the grand prizewinner of Syngenta’s 2016 Thrive #RootedinAg contest. Hampton works with her family on their four-generation farm, Robin Hill Farm & Vineyards. She is also an agricultural marketing specialist for the Maryland Department of Agriculture.
The Syngenta contest challenged growers and other ag industry professionals across the country to describe how their agricultural roots are helping them, their families and their communities thrive. In Hampton’s winning essay, she describes the role agriculture has had in her life: “I’m blessed to be able to say that my family’s roots in agriculture go back many generations and are steeped in a rich tradition of hard work, faith, family, and farming … If it weren’t for my agricultural roots, I would not have had the tenacity to grow wings and take a more active part in my larger community.”
In addition to the mini touch-screen tablet that she, along with four other deserving finalists, received earlier in the competition, Hampton has won a $500 gift card. Syngenta also will make a $1,000 donation in her name to the BadenStrong Team, part of the Brandywine-Baden Out of the Darkness Walk, which benefits the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP).
“I’m choosing this charity because it’s something that has deeply affected my family, our friends, and our small rural town many times,” Hampton says. “As a community, we joined the AFSP and formed a local chapter and walk team to help shed light on the issues surrounding mental health and suicide. We hope to reach out to those who are suffering and their families, so that we can make a positive difference in the world around us.”