Senator Thomas “Mac” Middleton (D – District 28) is a recipient of CropLife America’s (CLA) 2016 State Legislator Award. This award honors those who demonstrate outstanding leadership in the area of state legislative issues and who promote initiatives that preserve, protect and advance the ability of farmers to provide a safe, affordable and abundant food supply to America. CLA is a national trade association representing the crop protection industry that advocates for and promotes the responsible use of innovative, safe and environmentally sound crop protection products that are essential in the production of food, fiber and renewable or alternative fuels.
Senator Middleton is the first Maryland legislator to receive this national award. Senator Middleton is a lifelong resident of Charles County, Maryland and the only full-time farmer serving in the Maryland State Legislature. Middleton was elected to the Maryland Senate in 1994 and currently serves as the Chairman of the Budget and Taxation Committee. Although his committee does not hear most of the bills relating to agriculture and crop protection, Senator Middleton serves as a voice for agriculture and rural heritage to his colleagues from both political parties. The Senator was recognized during CLA’s annual meeting in September and presented with the award at the Charles County Farm Bureau membership dinner on October 22, 2016. When presented with the award by Lindsay Thompson, Senator Middleton said, “I may be the only full-time farmer left in the legislature but there are other involved in agriculture aisle who stand up for the farming community’s best interest and I share this award with them on both sides of the aisle.”
Middleton currently serves as the Chair of the Chesapeake Bay Commission which he has served on since 2007 representing Maryland on issues of Bay-wide concern. The Senator was recognized with the CLA State Legislator Award namely for his work over the last several years on legislation regarding neonicotinoid pesticides in the Maryland State Legislature. Senator Middleton stood up for agriculture and the crop protection industry as stewards of natural resources who use these effective products in a safe and responsible way. Middleton also serves as a voice for agriculture at the National Conference of State Legislatures on the Natural Resources and Infrastructure Committee.