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Release: Sept. 4, 2002

(Photo: Marilyn Adams with a photo of her son)

I-CASH selects first-ever Hall of Fame Award recipients

The Iowa Center for Agricultural Safety and Health (I-CASH) has selected two Iowans as the first-ever recipients of the I-CASH Agricultural Safety and Health Hall of Fame Award.

Marilyn Adams, founder and president of Farm Safety 4 Just Kids, and L. W. (Pete) Knapp, professor emeritus of Occupational and Environmental Health in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, will be honored at a public ceremony to be held at 2:15 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 7, in the 4-H Auditorium at the Clay County Fairgrounds in Spencer. Governor Tom Vilsack will present the awards and sign a proclamation declaring the week of Sept. 15-21 as Iowa Farm Safety and Health Week.

The I-CASH awards were created to recognize individuals or organizations that have made a significant contribution to agricultural safety and health. I-CASH is headquartered at the UI College of Public Health and is a joint venture of the UI, Iowa State University, the Iowa Department of Public Health, and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.

The judges were unanimous in their selection based on the substantial and long-term contribution and dedication of the awardees to the agricultural safety and health community, said Kelley Donham, D.V.M., director of I-CASH and professor of occupational and environmental health in the University of Iowa College of Public Health.

"Marilyn Adams stands out for her impassioned efforts on behalf of protecting our nation's children on farms, and Dr. Pete Knapp has given a lifetime to Iowa's agricultural safety and health community," Donham said. "It is with great pleasure that we recognize the work of these two dedicated individuals.

"Through their efforts, they have brought about positive changes in the agricultural industry and to the mind-set of rural America. They have focused national and international attention on the issue of agricultural safety and made these injuries and deaths unacceptable," he added.

After the death of her son Keith in a gravity flow wagon, Adams felt she had been given a mission to prevent such a tragedy from happening to another family. She founded Farm Safety 4 Just Kids in 1987 to protect children from the hazards of agriculture, primarily by providing resources and training to individual and communities to conduct farm safety awareness and education programs for youngsters.

The organization now is recognized as the leading source of information on childhood farm safety issues. The numbers of children injured or killed in agriculture have been reduced, in great part due to Adams and Farm Safety 4 Just Kids. The organization has chapters throughout the United States and Canada and can be visited online at

Knapp has dedicated his life to the field of agricultural safety both nationally and internationally. In 1959, he joined the Institute for Agricultural Medicine, then a relatively new organization at the UI. He served as principal investigator of the Kellogg Foundation grant to develop the institute, which is now known as the Institute for Rural and Environmental Health.

Throughout his career, Knapp focused on the identification and prevention of injuries and illnesses related to agriculture, and worked on the design and redesign of farm machinery to prevent accidents. His accomplishment include identifying a mechanical defect in a corn picker, resulting in the recall and correction of the machine by the manufacturer, and redesigning the power take-off shaft, which now is used by most manufacturers to prevent hundreds of serious injuries and deaths. Knapp also has developed theories and applications of the man–machine–environment approach to in-depth injury investigations.

For more information about the award ceremony, visit or contact Eileen Fisher at (319) 335-4224 or