WASHINGTON, D.C.—U.S. Customs and Border Protection announces today that Richard Wallio and John Raymer were awarded the Foreign Agricultural Service Award by the United States Department of Agriculture. The recipients were recognized during an April 10 ceremony for their contributions in providing International Tariff Rate Quota training. The 2012 FAS Honor Award is one of the highest awards that FAS can bestow upon its employees and private citizens; this is the first time in more than 10 years that a CBP employee has received this award.
"The work that Mr. Wallio and Mr. Raymer performed serves to strengthen the global economy by ensuring that agriculture products do not carry pests and diseases that would harm local crops. Through our agriculture mission, CBP works with our international partners to build and strengthen capabilities." said CBP Acting Commissioner Thomas S. Winkowski. "I want to congratulate and thank Richard and John for their outstanding efforts."
Wallio and Raymer were part of a group award as members of the "Free Trade Agreement Implementation Team" for training provided to the Colombia and Panama governments to implement the respective trade agreements. They provided training in both countries and in Washington, D.C. on administering "First Come - First Served" tariff rate quota processing and discussion of development of an automated quota system.
Since 1984, the USDA has provided short-term training for agriculturalists from middle-income countries, emerging markets and emerging democracies under the Cochran Fellowship Program. The program works closely with USDA agencies, agricultural trade and market development associations, agricultural colleges and universities, and agribusinesses to implement training programs.
Wallio and Raymer have served as part of the CBP workforce since 1996 and 2010, respectively.