2015 Shepherd of the Year
Each year, MSBA recognizes an individual or couple for their distinguished work within the Maryland sheep industry; their unique contribution to the organization itself and their dedication to volunteerism. The title of 2015 Shepherd of the Year was awarded to Lee Langstaff of Shepherd’s Hey Farm.
Lee has served on the Board of Directors of MSBA several times as a director and as an officer. She has actively and consistently engaged in efforts above and beyond her board positions with constructive and positive input. She has used her facilitation and mediation skills to encourage increased cooperation and collaboration within the organization that has supported growth and positive forward movement.
A farmer and animal person at heart, Lee was introduced to sheep through their wool – learning to spin in the 1980s – and was captivated by the fiber. When her family bought a farm in Comus, Maryland, sheep were the obvious livestock of choice, and producing great hand spinning fleeces in natural colors became her passion. Lee worked as a volunteer at the Fleece Show & Sale for 10 years and now co-chairs that event. She has volunteered at the Maryland Shearing School and the Maryland Wool Pool for 8 years. She is one of only three certified Level 2 Wool Classers in the region.
She is generous with her knowledge of sheep, wool, and shepherding with anyone who is interested. She is excited at the successes of others and offers positive, kind words when fellow shepherds are facing some of their more challenging sheep related experiences.
Lee’s attention to her own flock has been exemplary. Their wool has improved with dedication to genetics highlighting beautiful natural colors and highly desirable hand spinning qualities. Her natural colored longwools are making an impact in the show ring, and her fleeces are highly sought after and have won the Best Maryland Fleece award three times in the last 10 years. At the same time, Lee has worked to maintain her flock as dual purpose and has an enthusiastic and loyal custom butchered lamb clientele.
She is generous with her knowledge of sheep, wool, and shepherding with anyone who is interested. She is excited at the successes of others and offers positive, kind words when fellow shepherds are facing some of their more challenging sheep related experiences. As a collective group of shepherds engaged in the volunteer spirit to promote the sheep and wool industry, MSBA is here to encourage, educate, and shepherd not only our sheep but our also our fellow shepherds and the general public. Lee Langstaff was chosen for this honor because she personifies these characteristics of an exemplary Maryland shepherd.
We are pleased to note that since being selected as Shepherd of the Year in October 2015, Lee has taken on the leadership position of President of the Maryland Sheep Breeders Association.