Mike Tighe receives honorary degree from National FFA at State House

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The National FFA Organization has awarded Callison Tighe & Robinson Founding Member Michael Tighe with its Honorary American FFA Degree on Oct. 29.

“The Honorary American FFA Degree is the highest degree bestowed upon an individual by the National FFA Organization,” said Scott Stump, CEO of the national organization, in a letter to Mr. Tighe. “It stands in recognition of your contributions to agriculture, agricultural education and FFA at the national level.”

Mr. Tighe received the degree in person at a state FFA gathering at the South Carolina State House on Feb. 23, 2022. The north steps of the capitol were filled with members in their blue FFA jackets. It was the first such meeting since the start of the pandemic, and it was a welcome sight to Mr. Tighe, who said, “I think it’s wonderful to see so many people interested in agriculture, and I’m sure you all will have wonderful careers.”

This acknowledgement of a lifetime of public service capped an eventful past year, during which Mr. Tighe celebrated his 80th birthday, and the firm he helped found marked its 50th anniversary.

In addition to being a practicing attorney, Mr. Tighe is a timber farmer and manager of a stream mitigation credit bank. More than that, he has long helped promote and advance the work of the FFA – formerly known as Future Farmers of America – in a number of ways. He helps oversee multiple FFA executive and foundation boards, work for which he has already received the Honorary State FFA degree.

In nominating him for the national degree, South Carolina FFA Executive Director Jillian Lash wrote in part:

“Mr. Tighe has served as legal counsel for the SC FFA Association for many, many years. He was instrumental in the founding and development of the SC FFA Foundation and in guiding the SC FFA Foundation in land purchases and sales as well as advising the SC FFA Association on all legal matters to protect the day-to-day dealings of the Association…. Through his 48 years of guidance… the SC FFA Association and the SC FFA Foundation have found many years of success….”

Mike Tighe was very pleased and touched to receive the honorary degree. “My entire life I have been deeply impressed by the tremendous service the FFA provides to individual young people, and to the future of farming,” he said. “I am more honored than I can say to have had the opportunity to play a role in its work.”

A certified mediator and arbitrator and experienced litigator, Mike Tighe has represented title insurers and their insureds, as well as lenders and major developers, in real estate-related litigation in state and federal courts in South Carolina, and in transactional matters since 1971.