Rachel Strode Hamilton served the American Meat Science Association as Program Director of Intercollegiate Meats Judging from July 2000 until her untimely death. Rachel earned a B.S. degree in animal sciences from the University of Illinois in May 1998. While an undergraduate, she was a member of the 1997 Meats Judging Team and the 1998 Meat Animal Evaluation Team. She completed a Masters degree in meat science from the University of Illinois in May 2000, married Dan Hamilton in June, and immediately went to work for AMSA.
The Rachel Hamilton Memorial “Spirit” award was established to honor a member of each team selected by their peers whose winning approach exemplifies Rachel’s love of meats judging and makes them the teammate we all want to have. Rachel was extremely proud of her meats judging experience. She always strove to do her best, and her infectious attitude and dedication brought out the best in her teammates. Rachel was a very energetic, enthusiastic young woman with an infectious smile. Rachel, the eternal optimist, was a very compassionate, outgoing, kind individual who looked for the good in others. Her attitude, her ability to laugh, her work ethic, her loyalty, and her love of family and God are attributes she possessed and lived and left for us to emulate. Knowing Rachel made each of us a better person.
2013 A-Division Spirit Award
The 2013 Hamilton "Spirit" Awards for the A-Division were announced at the Cargill High Plains Intercollegiate Meat Judging Contest on November 3, 2013. Those students receiving this award included: Morgan Boyer, (Clarendon College ), Landon French (Western Texas College), Dimitri Delarosa, (Texas A&M Kingsville), Amber Burgess, (Tarleton State University) Stanley Palma, (Garden City Community College), and Tabitha Kedigh, (Fort Scott Community College).
2013 Senior Division Spirit Award
The 2013 Hamilton "Spirit" Awards for the Senior Division were announced at the International Intercollegiate Meat Judging Contest on November 17, 2013. Those students receiving this award included: Clay Kelley, (Angelo State University), Sally Strohn (Colorado State University), Laura Garcia (Fresno State University), Katie Claxton (University of Georgia), Taylor Wolfer (University of Illinois), Kara Christensen (Iowa State University), Mary Ann Matney (Kansas State University), Niki Patterson (University of Kentucky), Sara Bronkema (Michigan State University), Will Moore (University of Missouri), Clay Boyles (University of Nebraska-Lincoln), Jordan Zenker (North Dakota State University), Brandon Klehm (The Ohio State University), Kelly Vierck (Oklahoma State University), Samantha Berg (South Dakota State University), Andrew Fry (Texas A&M University), Taelar Childers (Texas Tech University), Jennifer Rowell (West Texas A&M University), and Lara Allnutt (University of Wyoming).