Burt Rickenbaker of Davis Station was named Ginner of the Year by Southeastern Cotton Ginners Association. The award was presented at the annual meeting of Southern- Southeastern at the Westin Resort and Spa in Hilton Head in January.
Rickenbaker is the second generation running Rickenbaker Gin in Davis Station. His father started the company in the 1940s after returning from World War II.
The original gin was steam powered, but by the time Rickenbaker’s bought it, it ran on diesel. A fire that nearly took out the gin in the 1960s gave them the opportunity to convert to electricity. Over the years, Rickenbaker Gin has endured through the tough times of the 1970s when the gin averaged around 1,000 bales a year to today when 30,000 to 40,000 bales isn’t uncommon.
Rickenbaker is a past president of Southeastern Cotton Ginners Association and has served as a director for both the National Cotton Ginners Association and the National Council. Rickenbaker and his wife, Julie, have a daughter who will soon be going to college.