Five judges representing agricultural youth organizations and the music industry will soon determine the top four finalists of FMC's 2013 Stand and Be Heard Anthem Singing Contest. The featured judges will review the semi-finalists' videos, which were recently determined by popular vote from more than 180 submissions.
- Tom Davis, director of music production at SeisMic Sound in Nashville. Davis has served as the music producer in last year's Anthem Contest show broadcasted on RFD-TV. This year, he returns as judge and producer. Davis has worked as the audio producer of several country music awards ceremonies and television events.
- Nancy Barcus, vice president of leader and organization services for Agriculture Future of America. Barcus has been a member of NAMA for four years. She has been on the careers committee for three years working closely with students.
- Tess Hammock, National 4-H Council youth trustee. Hammock has been involved in 4-H for more than five years. She served on the 2011-12 Georgia 4-H Board of Directors and is an active member of the University of Georgia Collegiate 4-H, where she is studying agriculture communication and broadcast journalism. Hammock has also been a member of Clovers and Co., the elite performing arts group of 4-H.
- Patti LaJoye, National FFA Chorus Director. LaJoye has taught music for 30 years and continues to direct theatrical productions as well as teach private piano, strings and voice lessons.
- Katie Wesler, finalist in the 2012 FMC Anthem Contest. Wesler is currently a student at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and has been involved in FFA, Ohio Young Farmers and the National Young Farmer Educational Association.
"In learning from last year's contest, we decided to add a judge's panel with representation from various student agricultural groups. And since this is a music contest, we've included representatives with musical backgrounds, too," said Tim Thompson, FMC Agricultural Products North America product manager. "The judges have the difficult task of choosing this year's four finalists from a great pool of talent, but the grand prize winner will still be selected by popular online vote."
After the judges make their final selections, the four finalists will travel to Nashville, Tenn., to take part in a professional Music City recording experience. Finalist performances will then be posted to www.FMCcrop.com/contest and broadcast nationwide on Aug. 29 on RFD-TV.
A final round of online voting from Aug. 26 through Sept.15 will determine the grand prize winner. The finalist who receives the most votes will win a $10,000 scholarship. The three remaining finalists will each receive $5,000 scholarships. Winners will be announced on Sept. 18.
For more information, visit www.FMCcrop.com/contest