MAURICE J. PICKLER
Maurice Pickler was born in Chicago, Illinois, and came to North Carolina during the height of the great depression of 1919-30. Maurice was five years old, and his father, Jacob Pickler, was forced to return to the farm for economic reasons.
Maurice grew up on the farm, attended and graduated from N. C. State University with a B.S. degree in 1947, and went on to Cornell University where he received a M.S. degree in agricultural economics in 1948.
He joined the family farming business with his father in 1948 and they had a "large" commercial egg flock of 1,000 hens. In 1949 they processed and sold quality controlled eggs under the Springdale Farms private label. The family business grew rapidly, building their second laying house in 1949, a feed mill in 1952, and brother, Gene Pickler, joined the business in 1958. At that time, they had 25,000 hens in production.
Maurice played a very important role in shaping the future direction of the North Carolina poultry industry. He was one of the original board members of the N. C. Poultry Council started during the 1950’s, helped formulate and promote the passage of the N.C. Egg Law in 1959, and was a prime mover in organizing the N.C. Egg Marketing Association in 1960. He was a board member and President of the Egg Marketing Association. The N.C Poultry Federation was developed from the N. C. Poultry Council and Maurice was a member of the first board of directors. He also was one of three board members who selected Ed Woodhouse as the Federation’s Executive Secretary.
Maurice also made major contributions to the development of the poultry industry regionally, nationally, and internationally. He was President of the Southeastern Poultry and Egg Association, board member of the Poultry and Egg National Board, original board member of the American Egg Board and was chairman of their research committee, supervising their one million dollar research budget.
Maurice made major contributions to the egg industry by organizing and helping formulate the "Nest Run" basis for trading and pricing eggs, developing the egg clearinghouse, and the organization and management of the egg marketing cooperative, "Eggmar."
He has been a real pioneer in developing the egg industry in this country and in supporting the development of the entire poultry industry. The North Carolina Poultry Federation is pleased to recognize Maurice for his contributions and to induct him into the prestigious North Carolina Poultry Hall of Fame.