2018 Convention Schedule

Banquet – Special Presentations


Lynne Williams IMG_0993
Thornton Taylor Memorial Award
Presented to Mrs. Lynne Williams

This award started in 1971 as a Memorial Award for Thornton Taylor, long-time member of the Lincoln County Fair and a State Legislator.  This award is provided by the Lincoln County Fair.  This is given each year to a person who is active and been involved with the Tennessee Association of Fair.

About Lynne Williams the Thornton Taylor Award Receipent
The following Bio was shared during presentation…

The Thorton Taylor award this year is presented to one of Tennessee’s most dedicated individuals who supports fairs across our state.  This individual has the knowledge of the fair industry and has provided the support necessary to accomplish all fairs goals.  This person has provided support in the agriculture premium, merit awards, and numerous other programs for the fairs across Tennessee.  Century Farm programs and marketing programs for Tennessee is just an example of the other programs.

This person has been heavily involved in all phases of agriculture in order to support the fair industries.  For over 15 plus years this individual has conducted state-wide conferences, workshops, trade shows, photo shoots, and cooking schools just to name a few.  Additional areas of the fair industry includes; involment with the Tennessee State Fair, secretary of the National Association of Agricultural Fair Agencies since 2001 and   has been a 4-H volunteer leader and secretary/treasurer of the Tenn 4-H Alumni Association.

As we all know promoting  “Pick Tennessee Products” is a large part of our fair business, which this individual has promoted throughout all fairs.  As a result of these promotional efforts, almost all fairs across our state have supported and promoted these programs.

They are a native of Hickman County, graduate of Columbia State Community College and attended U.T. Nashville.  After two years with the Tennessee Military Department, they began work at the Tennessee Department of Agriculture in 1976 in the public information office and served as Public Information Officer from 1979-1981, then 4 years in the newly established Agricultural Resources Division.

After staying home to her raise children, she returned to the Department of Agriculture in 1995 as publications, and records coordinator.  Since 1997 she has served as Fair Administrator for the Tennessee Department of Agricuture.  She is married to Tom Williams and they thave three children.


It is with great honor and pleasure to present the ‘Thorton Taylor Award” too Lynne Williams.


Sisters IMG_0992sm

Janet Graham & Karen Buckner daughters of the late Mrs. Judy Basse recognized.

Announcement of Future
Judy Basse Memorial

Judy Basse

Mrs. Judy Basse

As you know, this year’s theme for our convention is “Your Time Makes a Difference.”  I would like to take a few moments to honor the memory of one who was greatly admired by this organization because of the time she spent taking care of TAF.  In October of last year our TAF friend and past executive secretary, Judy Basse, passed away.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Bob, who was always actively involved in her endeavors.  She is survived by two daughters, Janet Graham and husband Tim of Sewanee, and Karen Buckner and her husband Buck of Hermitage, TN.  She had one granddaughter and four grandsons.

Judy was past executive secretary of the Tennessee Association of Fairs from 1980 to 1999.  She served a two-year term as president of the Federation of Fairs, and served on the International Association of Fairs and Exhibitors’ board.  She was a past president of the Nasville Area Chamber of Commerce Farmer’s Club and a member of the Downtown Kiwanis Club, just to name a few.

Judy was a lady who was easy to work with, friendly and always remembered your name.  She was an asset to the Tennessee Association of Fairs.

Beginning at next year’s convention, TAF will present an annual award named the “Judy Basse Outstanding Secretary Award.”  Details of the qualifications will be forthcoming to each fair.


Ruthie IMG_0987

Vernon Henson Award
Presented to Debbie Bradshaw-Hart
from Ruthie Jeans.

This plaque is given by the Dyer County Fair in memory of Vernon Henson, long-time member of their fair boarfd and a past president of the TAF



P.G. Crooks Award
Present to Ruthie Jeans
from Debbie Bradshaw-Hart

This plaque is given by the Crooks family in memory of their father, P.G. Crooks, who was a long-time member of the Fentress County Fair board and past president of the TAF.  His son, David was active with the Fentress County Fair until his death in 2010 and also past TAF president and his daughter, Ella Ree Johnson is active with the White County Fair.