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NFPDA Recognizes Wayne Farms’ Elton Maddox

Maddox was given lifetime achievement award

This year’s NFPDA Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Elton Maddox, Wayne Farms LLC Executive Chairman and Chairman of the Board, continues to positively influence the poultry and food industry after more than four decades in successful leadership roles.

A north Georgia native, Maddox grew up working on his family’s chicken farm and served in Future Farmers of America leadership positions while still in high school as chapter officer, state officer and recipient of the FFA American Farmer degree. After earning an undergraduate degree in engineering from the University of Georgia, he joined Allied Mills’ Poultry Division, Wayne Farms, which would later become a wholly owned subsidiary of Continental Grains and eventually evolve to become Wayne Farms LLC, the sixth largest poultry producer in the nation.

Serving in a variety of management positions over more than four decades with Wayne Farms, Maddox oversaw the transformation of the company from a regional player with a wholesale focus to a national powerhouse producing products for the foodservice, retail and commodities markets. Changing the company’s operating culture along the way, he successfully led across-the-company modernization initiatives, including upgrading production technology and processes, reorganizing operations through a series of strategic acquisitions and divestitures, expansion of the company’s Prepared Foods division including construction of one of the industry’s most-advanced processing facilities in Decatur, and expansion of South Alabama operations including construction of the nation’s largest start-up feed mill.

Today Wayne Farms is manufacturing partner with some of the nation’s most recognized restaurant, food service and retail brands.

Over the years and paralleling his impact on company advancement, Maddox also wielded significant influence over industry issues as past president of the Georgia Poultry Federation and Wayne Farms Executive Chairman Georgia Poultry Processors Association, as chairman of the board for both the Georgia Poultry Improvement Association and the National Chicken Council, and as past chairman of both the US Poultry and Egg Association and US Poultry Harold E. Ford Foundation. He continues to serve in leadership on the board of directors of the National Chicken Council and US Poultry and Egg Association. A 37-year member of the Poultry Leaders Round Table, he was elected to life membership in 1992 and continues to qualify and serve as an active member.

Maddox brings the same degree of dedication to his personal pursuits, with his Christian faith and love of family taking center stage in a life marked by commitment and dedication to causes that impact his fellow man. Married to Claire H. Maddox, he proudly counts three daughters, three son-in-laws, four grandsons and fourteen granddaughters as his family legacy. As church deacon and Sunday school teacher, Maddox has been an active member of Pleasant Hill Baptist Church for more than 35 years.

More than 16 years ago, Claire and Elton founded Cross Training Sports Camps, Inc., with the mission of spreading joy, empowering the powerless, and lifting up the name of Jesus by providing sports camps in impoverished communities, feeding programs and school supplies for street children, job training for single mothers, and support for local churches. Cross Training camps have touched the lives of children here in the United States and around the world in Africa, Bolivia and Honduras. In 2009, the Elsie Conde Memorial Sports Camp was started to commemorate the life of baby Elsie, the granddaughter of Claire and Elton, who was born with a congenital heart defect and touched so many lives in the two months she was on earth. This camp is specifically designed to minister to children with special needs. In the past eight years, Elsie Camps have served over 3,000 special needs participants and involved well over 300 volunteers.

The NPFDA Lifetime Achievement Award is yet another milestone in recipient Elton Maddox’ lifetime of service, measured across the width and breadth of industry, community, nation and world.

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