Eddie Smith Recipient of Harry S. Baker Distinguished Service Award

Eddie Smith, a former chairman and vice chairman for the National Cotton Council received the 2023 Harry S. Baker Distinguished Service Award.

February 19, 2024
Contact: Marjory Walker
(901) 274-9030

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Eddie Smith, a former chairman and vice chairman for the National Cotton Council received the 2023 Harry S. Baker Distinguished Service Award.

Smith was recognized during the National Cotton Council’s (NCC) 2024 annual meeting held February 16 -18 in Orlando, Florida.

The award, named for the late California industry leader and past NCC President Harry S. Baker, is presented annually to a deserving individual who has provided extraordinary service, leadership and dedication to the U.S. cotton industry.

Smith, who earned a degree in agricultural economics from Texas Tech University, began farming full-time following graduation. Today, he maintains a cotton, cattle and grain operation near Floydada, TX, in partnership with his father, Ed, and son, Eric. He has served as a director of Floydada Cooperative Gin and was elected to the board of directors of Plains Cotton Cooperative Association (PCCA) in 1984. He was unanimously elected chairman of PCCA in 2004.

Very active in the U.S. cotton industry, Smith has a long and distinguished record of leadership and service. He held the position of chairman and served as a long-time director of Cotton Incorporated. Additionally, he contributed to the organization by fulfilling roles as treasurer, secretary, and vice chairman.

In presenting the award, outgoing NCC Chairman Shawn Holladay said, “Mr. Smith served as chairman of the National Cotton Council in 2010. Prior to that, he served as the Council’s vice chairman and on numerous Council committees including its Environmental Task Force. He also completed the Council’s Cotton Leadership Program in 1991.”

Smith currently serves as a director at the Texas Agricultural Cooperative Council. In 
recognition of his accomplishments, he was honored with the Cotton Achievement Award by Cotton Grower Magazine in 2013.

He and his wife, JenniSu, have a son, and two grandsons and are active in Floyadada Baptist Church. 

Previous Baker award recipients include producers -- Woody Anderson, Duke Barr, Bruce Brumfield, Lloyd Cline, Robert Coker, Jimmy Dodson, Bruce Heiden, Kenneth Hood, Bill Lovelady, Bob McLendon, Frank Mitchener, Ron Rayner, Jimmy Sanford, Jack Stone and Charlie Youngker; ginners -- Lon Mann and Charlie Owen; merchants -- William B. Dunavant, Jr., and Bill Lawson; cooperative official -- Woods Eastland; textile manufacturer -- Duke Kimbrell; association executives – Andrew Jordan, Gaylon Booker, Phil Burnett, Neal Gillen, Mark Lange, John Maguire, Bill May, Albert 
Russell, Earl Sears, and B.F. Smith; Congressional members -- Senators Saxby Chambliss and Thad Cochran and Representatives Larry Combest and Charles Stenholm; and USDA official -- Charlie Cunningham.