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DAA: Roger W. Hadley, II

Roger Hadley

Roger W. Hadley, II

Woodburn, IN | Distinguished Ag Alumni: 2008

From the time Roger Hadley put in his first hours farming as a youngster, he knew that was the life he wanted. Working alongside his father, a part-time farmer, he discovered nature’s wonders and the benefits of sticking with it. “I learned the joy of being in charge of what you’re doing and that things aren’t always easy,” he says. “I like being able to put seed in the ground, see it develop into young plants, then a crop, and getting enough revenue to pay for the expenses with some left to go again the next year.” By the time he graduated from Purdue in 1975, he had already purchased a tractor, plow, other equipment, and his first 92 acres. To supplement his startup operation, he worked until 1987 as manager and research manager at Maumee Valley Seeds in Allen County. In 1988, he made corn, soybeans, and beef production his full-time career. Today, he owns 240 acres and leases another 560, relying only on seasonal help from family. “I’m not afraid of work, and I’m not afraid of risk,” he says. “I was determined, and I’ve done it with a lot of ambition, grit, and help from up above.” Throughout, Hadley has been a servant and leader in agriculture, education, and his community. He’s held board, advisory, and officer posts for state and national organizations and Purdue University, volunteered as an FFA judge, and annually hosted farm tours for as many as 1,500 students, teachers, and parents. Since college, he’s also been an American Red Cross blood donor, giving more than 200 times over the years. For pleasure, he enjoys Boilermaker sports and fishing for blue gill, crappie, and bass. “Learn all you can, have a goal and work toward it, knowing that your path to reach it may change. When you’ve got more energy and time than money, put in a lot of effort.”