A Harford County teen won the first ever virtual competition in the Miss Maryland Agriculture 2020 competition.
Kylan Keehan, 17, of Bel Air was recently named Miss Maryland Agriculture 2020 after competing against 15 other young women who earned their place in the Miss Maryland Agriculture Contest by winning their county Farm Bureau-sponsored contests. The virtual competition, necessitated by the pandemic, was the first of its kind in the history of the more than 80-year-old event.
Keehan was awarded with scholarship and cash awards valued up to $ 8,000. As Miss Maryland Agriculture 2020, she will act as an agriculture ambassador representing Maryland’s leading industry at numerous legislative and special events throughout Maryland.
Keehan, who lives in a suburban neighborhood, got her start in agriculture, when she was 12-year-old, by leasing Guernsey cattle from Avondale Acres. She will graduate this year from the agriculture magnet program at North Harford High School.
She is president of the Harford County Dairy Club, the Blue Ribbon 4-H Club, and is a contributing writer for Pink Tractor, a national magazine promoting women in agriculture. She plans to attend the University of Maryland to study agriculture economics.
“I am honored to have been named 2020 Miss Maryland Agriculture. I was once one of the consumers who didn’t understand agriculture. But, I have grown to appreciate agriculture and its importance through my involvement with 4-H, the Maryland Farm Bureau, and with the help of the many dedicated farmers whom I met along the way. They have helped me to become my best self,” said Keehan. “I look forward to the many opportunities ahead to share with others about the importance of agriculture to our state, our nation, and the world.”
“The purpose of the Miss Maryland Agriculture Program, in partnership with the Maryland State Fair, is to surface young women with an agricultural background to serve as leaders who will promote our agricultural industry and the Farm Bureau organization throughout the year and in the future,” said Miss Maryland Agriculture State Coordinator and Maryland State Fair & Agricultural Society Board Member Mary Amoss.
The young women vying for the title were critiqued during Zoom meetings, primarily on their farm/agricultural knowledge and experience, speaking ability, Farm Bureau knowledge, and presentation.
While the title has changed over the years, from Miss Timonium in the 1940s, Timonium Farm Queen, Farm Queen and Maryland Farm Queen in the 1950s, to Maryland Agriculture Ambassador and Miss Maryland Agriculture in the new millennium, the goal to promote the importance of agriculture has remained the same.