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McNeill honored with governor’s Order of the Long Leaf Pine award

Chelsey Butler

Randolph County Public Information Officer


ASHEBORO — The Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the Governor’s highest honor, was awarded to recently retired North Carolina House Representative Allen McNeill for his nearly five decades of public service. 


The award from Governor Roy Cooper was presented on Dec. 3 by the Randolph County Board of Commissioners at their first meeting of 2023. 


“This is an incredible honor,” McNeill said. “My one goal all along has been to make things better for the citizens of Randolph and Moore County in the North Carolina House, and all the people in the state. It has truly been my honor. All 43 years of public service for Randolph County and North Carolina have been well worth it.” 


Established in 1963, The Order of the Long Leaf Pine award is given to individuals who have made significant contributions to the state and their communities through exemplary service and exceptional accomplishments. Those named to the order become North Carolina “Ambassadors” with their names and award dates recorded on a roster maintained by the Order of the Long Leaf Pine Society. 


McNeill was employed with the Randolph County Sheriff’s Office for 36 years (1979-2015) and served as State Representative for North Carolina’s 78th District from 2012-23. The Seagrove native was instrumental in bringing $16 million to Randolph County’s ongoing Farm, Food and Family Education Center project, as well as supporting countless other projects during his tenure. 


McNeill was assigned to the following committees during 2021-22; Appropriations Committee, House Appropriations on Justice and Public Safety Committee, Election Law and Campaign Finance Reform, Judiciary II Committee, Pensions and Retirement Committee, and House Transportation Committee. In December of 2021, McNeill announced that he would not seek re-election after five full terms of service to Randolph County and North Carolina. He was succeeded by Neal Jackson in 2022.


“Allen is a servant of the people, a steady influence, positive in all he does, and respectful of everyone. He is one of the most dependable people I know,” said Darrell Frye, chairman of the Randolph County Board of Commissioners.” All of these qualities were factors in his ability to bring much-needed recognition and funding to Randolph County projects. 


“More than anything, Allen is a friend.”


For more information about the Order of the Long Leaf Pine Society, visit www.longleafpinesociety.org.