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2021DavidHyinkRapid CitySD
Dr. Hyink received his PhD from Purdue in Forest Biometrics in 1979 and worked in academia before becoming a Forest Scientist at Weyerhaeuser Company. Using his scientific and technical expertise, and his leadership skills, he created value for his employer, for regional and national forestry research, and for the national forest inventory.
2021BarryFlinchbaughManhattanKSBarry Flinchbaugh
Dr. Flinchbaugh passed away after his nomination was received, thus making him the first posthumously-awarded Certificate of Distinction winner. He received his PhD in Agricultural Economics in 1971 and worked for Kansas State University for his entire career. Dr. Flinchbaugh was highly regarded for his work in public policy and led trade missions and People-to-People tours around the world.
2021VictorLechtenbergWest LafayetteINVic Lechtenberg
Dr. Lechtenberg received his PhD from Purdue in Agronomy in 1971. He progressed through his career entirely at Purdue, starting as an Assistant Professor in 1971 and becoming dean in 1994. He also served Purdue in numerous university-level roles. He is recognized for his leadership by many international organizations and as for serving on many local community boards.
2021BruceByeBeech GroveINBruce Bye
Mr. Bye received his BS in Agricultural Economics in 1968, and enjoyed a successful career with Elanco as a market researcher. After his retirement, he has worked tirelessly to develop a vocational agriculture program near Indianapolis, which engages underrepresented students in agriculture. He also started a community garden through his church with 71 volunteers and produced over 5000 pounds of fresh produce to local food banks.
2021JamesBairdGreencastleINJim Baird
Current US Representative in the 4th District, Mr. Baird served on the front lines of the US Army, worked as an Extension Educator in Parke, Putnam and Vermillion Counties, and started his own business.
2020WilliamBradSmithRockvilleMDWilliam %22Brad%22 Smith
“Extraordinary analytical talent, astute strategic planning ability, savvy communications skills and community service” enabled William (Brad) Smith to leave a lasting mark on his industry, says Richard Guldin, who supervised Smith for nearly 20 years at the U.S. Forest Service’s Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program. “I know that Brad’s work contributed much to the success of the FIA program over the past 28 years as associate national program leader,” Guldin says. Before Smith retired in 2017, he spearheaded three strategic plans for the FIA program that led to the modernization of the nation’s forest census and contributed U.S. forest resource data to four global assessments by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. “Brad’s contributions to the field of forestry through FIA, through his partnership with professionals and laypeople worldwide, and through his warm and engaging personality can’t be overstated,” says Sonya Oswalt, forester, USDA Forest Service Southern Research Station. Smith considered himself an “assistant to history” in carrying out the vision of the FIA program. He studied the 50 years of forest inventory work that preceded his tenure with the Forest Service and advanced the FIA program through improvements in the science of inventory, analysis and reporting. “By the nature of our work, where inventories become part of the history and the record against which future trends and changes are measured, Brad’s work will have impact for decades and generations to come,” says Andrew Gillespie, associate director of the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Exposure Research Laboratory. While his scientific contributions to the industry were significant, including authoring or co-authoring 195 scientific and technical publications, Smith’s ability to communicate forest data across audiences allowed him to build coalitions. He developed a U.S. Forest Resource facts and trends brochure that was translated into six languages and has helped counter criticism internationally on how U.S. forests were managed. Smith received a Presidential Management Improvement Award from President Reagan in 1986 and a Presidential Award for Outstanding Volunteerism from President Clinton in 1993. “His work to advance inventory methods and our knowledge about forest resources has helped improve how we fulfill our mission of sound, sustainable forest management,” wrote Thomas Tidwell, chief of the U.S. Forest Service, in a letter to Smith upon his retirement. Smith also worked to ensure a strong and diverse workforce in the forestry industry. “Brad has been a fantastic mentor for me, always willing to share his knowledge and experience and guiding me through the early stages of my work with the forest inventory and remote sensing communities,” says Mette Wilkie, director of Forestry Policy and Resources Division, UN FAO Forestry Department. “The existing gender and ethnic diversity in the FIA program is due in no small part to Brad’s efforts,” Guldin says. “His strong coaching and mentoring skills were an effective and diplomatic means of advancing the field of forest inventory in countries which did not have a strong history in this field,” Gillespie says. “In this way he has had a positive impact on the practice of forest inventory across the globe, helping grow the current generation of practitioners in many countries.” THIS AND THAT • Korean Radio Traffic Analyst, U.S. Army Security Agency Branch of Military Intelligence, 1969-1972. • B.S., Forestry, Purdue University, 1975; M.S., Forestry, Purdue University, 1977. • Research forester, USDA Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis, North Central Forest Experiment Station, St. Paul, Minnesota, 1977-1989. • Timber products research group leader, USDA Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis, North Central Forest Experiment Station, 1989-1991. • U.S. representative to UN Economic Commission for Europe Team of Specialists on Monitoring Sustainable Forest Management, 1997-2017. • U.S. national correspondent to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, responsible for U.S. reporting to global forest assessments, 2000, 2005, 2010, 2015. • Co-authored A History of the Forest Survey in the United States 1834- 2004, 2007. • Presented 10 seminars to Purdue students, 1997-2010. • Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts volunteer, 2017-present.
2020ReneeMcKeeAtticaINRenee McKee
If you need an example of an individual living the 4-H pledge, look to Dr. Renee McKee, who puts the line “my hands to larger service” into action. Whether it is sewing costumes for dance recitals, baking treats for her church’s Sunday school, or writing grants to bring youth development programs to Indiana communities, she brings energy and passion to them all. “Dr. McKee’s outstanding leadership, interpersonal skills and ability to build partnerships have contributed to improving the quality of life for many Indiana families,” says Gerald Powell, a program process leader at Corteva Agriscience. McKee recently retired from Purdue University after more than 40 years of service. As assistant director of Purdue Extension and 4-H Youth Development program leader since 2003, she oversaw Indiana’s 4-H youth development programming. “Throughout her career, Renee has given unselfishly of her time and expertise for the long-term benefit of young people through 4-H and Extension. She is leaving a legacy for which Purdue University can be proud,” says Kathleen Lodl, national 4-H program leader working group chair and Associate Dean, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension. Over the past 16 years, she secured more than $22.7 million in grants to support 4-H youth development programming across the state in a variety of areas, including sustainable communities, youth mentoring, economic education, and alcohol, drug and tobacco prevention. Lodl says McKee’s work with the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of Agriculture created opportunities for other states to access resources, resulting in opportunities for military children and their families to engage with Extension and 4-H nationally and worldwide. McKee’s impact goes beyond the Indiana 4-H program. In addition to several programs she helped develop being used in other states, McKee served on multiple committees, helping mold the future of the 4-H Youth Development program nationally. “Dr. McKee is a strong leader who both pushes and inspires the groups that she is part of to expand their perspective of 4-H programming and audiences that those programs should attract,” says Powell. McKee believes in “learn by doing,” and that is reflected in the programs she helped develop, including Teens as Teachers, which is also used in other states. It provides teens with resources to teach youth and adults topics related to biotechnology, animal biochemistry, healthy living, teen leadership and computer coding. Since 2014, almost 600 teenagers have completed the program in Indiana. “Dr. McKee is passionate about providing youth the skills to teach, mentor and give back to their community. As she has stated many times, who better to talk about the 4-H youth development program than youth themselves?” says Tony Carroll, Purdue Extension specialist, 4-H Youth Development. She oversaw the many 4-H activities at the Indiana State Fair each August, from the show rings in the livestock barns to the fashion revue stage. Many of her contributions provided hands-on experiences for visitors and 4-H members, including the maker space, the sewing program and the woodworking shop. “Dr. McKee’s leadership has been extremely important in keeping the 4-H program vibrant in Indiana. We are so proud to have worked alongside her in connecting education with experiences,” says Cindy Hoye, executive director, Indiana State Fair. Pastor Darlene DeHaai of First United Methodist Church is familiar with McKee’s involvement in a number of volunteer activities in her hometown of Attica. “Renee’s humble and down-to-earth nature makes a great example for all, especially when dealing with folks who are struggling with life and all that life throws at them,” DeHaai says. THIS AND THAT • B.S., Clothing & Textiles, Indiana State University, 1977. M.S., Extension Education, Purdue University, 1980. Ph.D., Curriculum & Instruction, Purdue University, 2000. • County Extension Educator in Carroll County, 1977-1979, and Warren County, 1988-1997. • Campus-based Extension Specialist in state 4-H office, overseeing the program’s leadership and volunteer administration, 1997-2003. • Co-chaired Extension Committee on Organization and Policy 4-H Leadership Committee, National 4-H Council. • Served on numerous curriculum design teams, chaired planning committees of national events, including National 4-H Congress. • Honored with the Epsilon Sigma Phi Distinguished Ruby Award. • Active member of Attica First United Methodist Church. Currently chair of Staff Pastor Parish Relation Committee and lay member to annual conference.
2020MarkLeganCoatesvilleINMark Legan
Mark Legan didn’t let his lack of a production agriculture background stop him from pursuing farming as a full-time career in 1988 after seven years working as a county Extension Educator. Today, Legan and his wife, Phyllis, operate Legan Livestock and Grain Inc. in Putnam and Hendricks counties with their daughter, Beth, and her husband, Nick Tharp. After repopulating the herd and modernizing buildings in 1997, the Legans now raise 2,200 sows that produce about 60,000 pigs per year. In 2012, the family started forming partnerships with other family farms around Indiana to raise additional pigs. “He has had a successful professional career, but his passion for sharing and helping others is what makes him stand out,” says Don Villwock, former president of Indiana Farm Bureau. “What sets him apart is that he has always gone above and beyond what is expected of him.” Currently, Legan serves on the Indiana Soybean Alliance board of directors and on the executive committee for the U.S. Meat Export Federation. He commits his time to the pork industry at all levels, previously serving as president of both the Putnam County Pork Producers Association and the Indiana Pork Producers Association. While on the National Pork Producers Council board of directors, Legan participated in numerous committees, including budget, competitive markets and the farm bill task force. “He is a nationally respected agriculture leader and a sought-after speaker on multiple livestock issues,” adds Villwock. “Mark, Phyllis and their daughter and son-in-law operate what I consider to be one of the best managed farms in the Midwest.” Legan is the swine industry representative on the Indiana State Board of Animal Health. “Always willing to serve when called, Mark serves as a teacher to some, a mentor to others and as an example to us all,” says Bret Marsh, DVM, state veterinarian, Indiana State Board of Animal Health. From hosting foreign trade delegations to granting media interviews, Legan never hesitates to open the family farm to the public to help tell the story of today’s agriculture. The family has hosted the Purdue Farm Management Tour and National Association of Conservation Districts Tour. With a focus on improving soil health, Legan has been recognized for his efforts to innovate and conserve with the American Soybean Association Conservation Legacy Award in 2014 and the Indiana Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts River-Friendly Farm Award in 2016. “His willingness to learn, adopt and apply new technologies on his farm has ensured the continuing success of the operation, which is important since the third generation of family members now resides on the farm,” Marsh says. Mark and his family place a high priority on serving and giving back to their community, according to Marshall Martin, senior associate director of agricultural research and assistant dean of agriculture, Purdue University. Legan volunteers his time to help a variety of local groups, including the 4-H program, school groups and the economic development program. “They feel by being involved they can help improve the future of the community,” Martin says. THIS AND THAT • B.S., Animal Science, Purdue, 1982; M.S., Agriculture, Purdue, 1987. • Extension Educator, Purdue University, 1982-1988. • Indiana Prairie Farmer Master Farmer, 2006. • Served on three district congressional advisory committees, Indiana State Department of Agriculture Advisory Committee and Indiana Department of Environmental Management’s Water Pollution Control Board. • Received the Purdue University College of Agriculture Distinguished Agricultural Alumni Award, 2005. • Served on Purdue University Dean of Agriculture Advisory Council and the Chicago Federal Reserve Agricultural Advisory Committee. • Member of the Indiana Horse Council. • Featured farm family at the 2018 Indiana State Fair. • Past treasurer and deacon of Bethel Baptist Church.
2020RogerHadley IIWoodburnINRoger Hadley II
Roger Hadley II is considered a pioneer in the use of soy biodiesel in Indiana. He started mixing soy biodiesel on his northeastern Indiana farm in the 1990s, before it was widely distributed or used. “He was instrumental in promoting soy biodiesel as an alternative fuel,” says Tom Bechman, editor of Indiana Prairie Farmer. “That effort alone has far-reaching consequences beyond the borders of his farm, Woodburn and Allen County. Roger has made a real difference in this area.” After graduating from Purdue University, Hadley started his career at Maumee Valley Seeds, Inc. in 1975, spending 12 years in various roles, including research manager, before leaving to farm full-time. He currently grows corn and soybeans and raises cattle for freezer beef. Hadley makes it a priority to be involved in organizations that better his industry today and into the future. “His commitment to production agriculture is unparalleled as is his commitment to improving the Indiana agricultural industry,” says Chris Novak, former CEO of Indiana Soybean Alliance and current CEO of CropLife America. “Roger approaches all his work with a zeal and enthusiasm that helps ensure success.” In his involvement with Indiana Soybean Alliance and American Soybean Association, Hadley understood the importance of advocating for farmers at a grassroots level at the Statehouse and in Washington, D.C. He also served on the agriculture advisory councils for two former U.S. representatives. He made it his mission to encourage more farmers to join the soybean associations. “Indiana’s soybean organizations face an uphill battle convincing our independent-minded farmers about the benefits of cooperation. Roger has been able to overcome this mindset,” Novak says. “Roger treats every meeting and business transaction as a membership opportunity.” Over the last 30 years, Hadley has recruited hundreds of farmers as members of the soybean organizations and in 2007 received the American Soybean Association Membership Lifetime Achievement Award for his efforts. “I have worked with Roger over the years on projects which support the Indiana and American soybean growers, and his demeanor is always one of convincing people to follow his lead,” says Sonny Beck, CEO of Beck’s Hybrids. He was a charter member of the Indiana Grain Indemnity Board in 2008 and served on the Farm Credit Services Advisory Board through 2019 and the Allen County Extension Office Advisory Council. “Roger is truly the go-to guy when we are looking for a thoughtful, common sense farmer and leader,” says Don Villwock, former president of Indiana Farm Bureau. He supports the Woodlan FFA Chapter by serving on its advisory board and allowing the chapter to host 2,000 kindergartners on his farm each spring. Hadley also served on the Indiana FFA Foundation for three years. Hadley has given back to Purdue University as past president of the Ag Alumni Association board of directors and a representative on the Purdue Alumni Association board. He served on the Dean’s advisory council and the Department of Agronomy advisory council. In 2008, Hadley received the College of Agriculture Distinguished Alumni Award for the Department of Agronomy. “Roger is a great ambassador for Purdue and role model for young people who desire to have careers in agriculture. His love of agriculture and energy will provide benefits to many for years to come,” says Bill Johnson, Purdue professor of weed science. Roger met his wife, Vickie, at Purdue, and they married in 1978. After 41 years as an educator, Vickie retired from Purdue Extension. Their two children are graduates from Purdue’s College of Agriculture. The couple has seven grandchildren. THIS AND THAT • B.S. Agricultural Economics/Farm Business Management, 1975, Purdue. • American Soybean Association, DuPont Young Leader, 1988; and board of directors (1996-2005), vice president of membership (1998-2001). • United Soybean Board, board of directors, 2010-2013. • Indiana Soybean Growers Association, president (1994-1995), vice president (1992-1993), director (1989-1999), membership chairman (6 years). • Indiana soybean checkoff, board of directors, 1991-2013. • Allen County Farm Bureau president, 2009-present; Indiana Farm Bureau member, 1980-present; and American Farm Bureau Soybean Advisory Board, 1996-1999. • National FFA American Farmer Degree, 1973; Indiana FFA Honorary Member Degree, 2002; Woodlan High School Honorary FFA Chapter Degree, 2002; Purdue University Alumni Award of Merit, Gamma Sigma Delta Honorary, 2002; and Indiana Prairie Farmer Master Farmer, 2005. • Serves the Woodburn United Methodist Church in various roles; currently vice chairman.
2020DaleGriffinCutlerINDale Griffin
Dale Griffin provides a host of opportunities for students at Rossville Jr.-Sr. High School to take what they learn and put it into action in their community and beyond. From state FFA and 4-H contests to community service projects, his reach goes well beyond the classroom. “Dale views all of his teaching, advising and coaching in school, FFA and 4-H as continuous and interwoven,” says Dr. Natalie Carroll, a professor in the Department of Agricultural Sciences Education and Communication, Purdue University. “He is motivated to assist youth in any way he can to help them learn and become competent, caring adults.” Griffin teaches a variety of agricultural sciences classes at Rossville and co-advises the FFA chapter with his wife, Christina, and Jesse Davis. More than 3,300 students have passed through his classroom over the last 33 years. “Dale’s impact on his middle and high school is enormous. From teaching subject matter, to life skills, to service training, and creating both personal and community ethics, his reach is immeasurable,” Carroll says. “He has introduced career opportunities and personal growth experiences to all his students.” Each year he coaches student teams participating in 4-H and FFA Career Development Events. Many of his teams have won state events and moved on to win national contests, including the North American International Envirothon Competition. In 2013, as a member of the national planning committee, Griffin helped bring the National Wildlife Habitat Education Contest to Indiana. According to Dr. Rod Williams, chair of the national committee, he was devoted to providing the best experience possible during the weeklong event. “I was impressed with his excitement, passion, work ethic and Purdue pride,” says Williams, a professor and Extension wildlife specialist, Purdue University. “He received no fewer than two standing ovations from the participants.” During his time at Rossville, the high school has had three students elected to the Indiana FFA State Officer team and one to the National FFA Officer team. “His leadership of Rossville FFA is in its second generation of students, which means the spirit of community service and commitment to leadership is evident in Rossville residents from ages 14 to 40-plus. What an impact!” says Dr. B. Allen Talbert, coordinator of Purdue University’s Agricultural Education Program. If you live in Clinton County, you have seen Griffin’s students in action. Griffin oversees student crews as they annually landscape 20 homes in the community. In 2019, Rossville FFA members picked more than 4,300 dozen ears of sweet corn worth $13,000 at Meadow Lane Farms in Frankfort to donate to local food banks and other organizations. The chapter volunteers at the Clinton County Farm and Conservation Camp; organizes a breakfast with Santa and the animals; tests local waterways for water quality in conjunction with the Soil and Water Conservation District; and raises pheasants to release in the county every two years. “I am continuously amazed and in awe of Mr. Griffin’s ability to share his vision for the future of agriculture with so many people by transferring his innate intellectual curiosity and work ethic to individuals on a 24/7 basis,” says Michael Priest, mathematics instructor at Rossville High School. Griffin opens his classroom to aspiring agricultural educators by partnering with Purdue’s Department of Agricultural Science Education and Communication. He’s hosted more than 80 Purdue students for early field experiences and weekly visits to observe his classes. Since 1990, Griffin has been a cooperating teacher for 17 Purdue agricultural education student teachers. Fourteen are still teaching and one is a university professor. “Mr. Griffin’s passion to serve people of all ages in the agribusiness industry is only surpassed by his unbound enthusiasm for helping people within the broad spectrum of the area we call agriculture,” Priest says. THIS AND THAT • B.S. Animal Sciences, Purdue, 1981; B.S. Agricultural Education, Purdue, 1983; M.S., Agricultural Education, Purdue, 1985. • Morning Sunshine Farm co-owner with his wife, Christina. • Honored as National Young Ag Teacher, 1992. • USDA Living to Serve Award to Rossville FFA Chapter, 2010. • Resurrected the Forestry FFA Career Development Event, 2013. • Received the Purdue University College of Agriculture Distinguished Alumni Award in 2015, and the College of Agriculture Distinguished Alumni Award, Department of Animal Sciences, in 2011. • Indiana State Fair volunteer in livestock barns and as forestry projects judge. • Member of Clinton County Extension Board, past president. • Past Swine and Sheep superintendent, Clinton County Fair. • Russiaville Friends Church Board Member, 1992-present.
2020BethBechdolAuburnINBeth Bechdol at podium
With her recent appointment as deputy director general at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, Beth Bechdol continues her service to the agricultural industry — now on a global scale. “Beth is an inspiring leader, an excellent collaborator, a consummate professional and delivers tirelessly,” says Aaron Schacht, executive vice president of innovation/regulatory/ business development at Elanco Animal Health. Bechdol will lead a number of programs as well as a new office of innovation at the FAO, an agency focused on reducing world hunger and headquartered in Rome, Italy. For the past five years, Bechdol has been president and CEO of AgriNovus Indiana, the state’s initiative focused on advancing the Indiana agbioscience sector as a nationally recognized leader. “She has been an ideal partner and collaborator,” says Schacht, who is chair of the AgriNovus executive board. “I believe Beth’s hallmark service has been in the formation and leadership of AgriNovus Indiana,” says Greg Deason, senior vice president of entrepreneurship and place making, Purdue Research Foundation. “She worked to strengthen, align and connect people and resources in the agbiosciences. Her service to AgriNovus made an impact on Indiana and beyond.” Jay Hulbert, president and CEO of Ag Alumni Seed, says Bechdol assembled a diverse group of agribusinesses, state agencies, universities and non-governmental organizations to create an AgriNovus team and community devoted to promoting agbiosciences in Indiana. “Beth is an indispensable leader, building Indiana into a Midwest hub for ag startups and major businesses. Her work will keep Indiana at the forefront of agbioscience technology and business,” Hulbert says. “Her ability to take quick, effective tactical action while never losing sight of the larger strategic picture and keeping the diverse group that was her board moving in the same direction was awesome to behold.” Early in her career, Bechdol became the youngest and first female vice president at agribusiness consulting firm Sparks Companies and worked for the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee and the USDA’s Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services in Washington, D.C. In 2005, she and her family returned home to Indiana. That same year, the Indiana Legislature established the Indiana State Department of Agriculture as a separate state agency and Bechdol assumed the role of deputy director. Bechdol and her family currently live in her hometown of Auburn, where she continues to support Brechbill Farms, Inc., their seven-generation family farm. In her new role with the FAO, the Bechdols will relocate to Rome. Prior to her leadership of AgriNovus, Bechdol was director of agribusiness strategies at Indianapolis-based law firm Ice Miller LLP and also president of the Agribusiness Council of Indiana. Throughout her career, Bechdol has given her time to industry and community organizations, including currently serving on the board of directors of the Purdue Research Foundation, the Agricultural Alumni Seed Improvement Association, Inc., Conner Prairie and Indiana Humanities. One project Bechdol supported through the Indiana Humanities was Food for Thought, an award-winning program examining and celebrating the ways food helps to define Indiana’s culture. She helped bring state agriculture organizations to the table to partner in that effort. As part of the Purdue Research Foundation board of directors, Bechdol has worked to ensure the foundation and its key assets, such as Purdue Foundry and the Purdue Research Park network, are positioned to help advance ideas to impact, Deason says. “She recognizes the impact that Purdue has on the community and the world. She works tirelessly to remain engaged and active in the Purdue community and to find numerous ways to leverage the incredible assets of Purdue to fuel and further Indiana’s agriculture and biosciences economy.” THIS AND THAT • B.S., Foreign Service, International Relations and Law, Georgetown University, 1994; M.S., Agricultural Economics, Purdue, 1996. • Currently sits on Indiana State Fair Commission. • Purdue University College of Agriculture Advisory Council, 2006-2009. • Purdue University Distinguished Agriculture Alumna Award, 2009. • Served on National FFA Sponsors Board (chair), National Grain and Feed Association, Farm Foundation Round Table and Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeastern Indiana.
Some people in Putnam County likely don’t think of Darrel Thomas as an Extension Director and 4-H Youth Educator, even though he held those roles for 31 years. After all, he retired in 2001. Instead, they might associate the Certificate of Distinction recipient with the Putnam County Council. A member since 2001, he has been president since 2010. “He works hard to ensure that all have a voice,” says William Dory, mayor of Greencastle, the county seat. “He listens and considers input from a wide range of individuals and organizations. He has mastered the nuances of the budget process for local units of government, and Mr. Thomas has been willing to share his expertise with others in Putnam County and around the state.” He’s also known for his work with the Putnam County Community Foundation, where he is a member of the Finance Committee. The foundation set up the Darrel Thomas 4-H Scholarship in his honor. Then there’s Putnam County’s Agricultural Day, which draws more than 400 community members. For 30-plus years, Thomas has filled the “coffee man” role. In 2000, he created SPARK, a six-week, three-day-a-week, three-hour-a-day program for elementary students. The Summer Program of Awareness and Recreation for Kids is now run by the city park board, which Thomas used to head; more than 100 youth participate. Scores of fourth-graders have gone to a Mini Farm Fest, a hands-on experience that Thomas began in 1985. The People Pathways Committee has converted abandoned rail lines into more than 10 miles of trails, and Thomas has been involved from the beginning. The P.I.E. Coalition—the acronym stands for Prevention, Intervention and Education—is a coordinating council that has provided more than $250,000 to Putnam County programs that address issues of drug abuse, smoking and alcoholism. Thomas was its first president. The Putnam County Leadership Academy Committee was created in 1993, and Thomas led it for two years. He was inducted into the Leadership Hall of Fame in 1995. Thomas has long been an advocate for the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association. He’s been president of the Greencastle group since 2001, and was a regional vice president for four years and state president for two years. “For over 30 years he quietly and humbly earned the respect of many, from all corners of the county,” Mayor Dory says. “Unknown to him, I have long considered him a role model for public service.” This and that • Assistant Fountain County Extension Agent, 1968-1969; Putnam County Extension Agent/Educator, 1970-2001. • Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents, and Career Award from the Indiana Extension Educators Association. • Indiana State University — bachelor’s degree (Recreation) in 1968; master’s (Educational Media) in 1975. Active with the Putnam County Purdue Club. • U.S. Navy Reserves, 1968-1972, with a tour in Vietnam. • When the Putnam County Museum held a benefit roast for Thomas, “People lined up to say good things,” says a Greencastle civic volunteer who also recalled “some very funny experiences that we will not share.”
2018JamesMonger, Jr.LafayetteIN
It’s the rare freshman who isn’t saddled with an early morning class or two. Psych 120 provided James Monger with reasons to be wide awake at 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Thursday and, yes, Saturday. “Talk about learning about time management while adjusting to the college environment — the value of that experience was beyond belief,” he recalls. “It really forced me out of my comfort zone and helped me understand that Purdue was about more than just an education. It helped develop discipline as well.” Armed with a marketing degree in 1984, he headed into a career with a single employer but many locales. Now a West Lafayette-based Regional Merchandising Leader, Monger is responsible for Cargill’s commodity supply chain for more than 20 agricultural facilities east of the Mississippi River. He has traded multiple product lines on both coasts, managed people and assets, and been involved in acquisitions and divestitures for the nation’s largest privately held company. Cargill provides platforms for employees to be involved in their communities, and Monger has seized the opportunities. For the past four years, he’s led Cargill Cares, the company’s community relations and involvement committee. At Purdue, Monger has helped secure financial support from Cargill for the MANRRS chapter. The Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Related Sciences chapter also gets time with Monger, at not only the end-ofthe- year banquet but at regular meetings as well. “Many corporate sponsors provide important financial support for student activities,” Purdue Provost Jay Akridge, former Dean of the College of Agriculture, writes in a letter supporting a Certificate of Distinction award for Monger, “but their personal engagement is limited. I believe it is impossible to overstate how important it is for underrepresented minorities in the College of Agriculture to interact with accomplished African-American professionals such as Mr. Monger.” In Greater Lafayette, food insecurity is rising. Monger’s leadership “has transformed” the Food Finders Food Bank Inc. board, says CEO/President Katy Bunder. “We were in a period of growth driven by the number of food-insecure. The board was divided into factions: those who wanted to meet the need for food aid, and those who wanted to make sure that our organization did not spend money. James quickly assessed the situation and began asking the right questions and proposing the right strategies to accomplish attitude change. He convinced those anxious about spending to focus on the mission as much as the bottom line. He brings extraordinary insight in finance, human resources, board governance, and interpersonal relationships to our board and makes it a higher functioning board.” This and that • Board of Directors: Northwestern Ohio Food Bank, 1995-1999; Food Finders Food Bank, Lafayette, 2014-present. • Bachelor’s degree, Marketing, Purdue University, 1984 • 33 years with Cargill Inc. - Regional Merchandising Leader, 2014-present - Ohio Merchandising Leader, Cincinnati, Ohio, 2004-2014 - Farm Service Group Manager, Burns Harbor, Indiana, 1999-2004 - Sector Manager and Location Manager, Toledo, Ohio, 1995-1999 - Oilseeds Merchant, Des Moines, Iowa, 1993-1995 - Feed Grains Merchant, Sacramento, California, and Des Moines, Iowa, 1988-1993 - Origination Merchant, Dubuque, Iowa, and Buffalo Iowa, 1984-1988
He majored in Communications. Good choice. Since January 2000, Ray Moistner has been executive director of the Indiana Hardwood Lumbermen’s Association (IHLA), a trade association that now boasts 375 member firms and draws more than 1,000 people to its annual convention. “It has become the largest state hardwood trade association meeting,” says a lumber company executive who wrote in support of Moistner’s Certificate of Distinction nomination, “and a must-attend for those who work in the hardwood industry around the world.” The IHLA is the nation’s second-oldest lumber association, and its membership includes residents of more than 30 states and more than a few countries. Exports are vital to the hardwood industry. A statewide “hardwood strategy” will analyze business opportunities available based on the supply chain and identification of specific locations best suited for expansion and new manufacturing, along with the determination of domestic and global demand. Moistner is helping develop this strategy, which, “when completed will be a first for the hardwood industry, not only in Indiana but in the U.S.,” a state agriculture official says. Moistner is well known to legislators at the Statehouse. “Perhaps his greatest achievement has been to incorporate the hardwood industry into the agricultural sector of Indiana’s government and legislature,” says the one who nominated Moistner for the Certificate of Distinction. “The state’s lumber industry no longer plays second fiddle. The importance of the multiple benefits provided by Indiana’s forest resources is now widely recognized.” His communication skills are on display at hearings (Hardwood Export Council), board discussions (State Department of Agriculture, Purdue Agriculture Dean’s Advisory Board), and in letters to the editor (recently, in support of harvesting at Yellowwood State Forest). Hardwood lumber’s primary markets include furniture and fixtures manufacturers, and previous positions with builders groups helped Moistner become “knowledgeable about their needs and purchasing practices. This has allowed him to take a comprehensive approach to mutually satisfying the needs of all components of the hardwoodrelated industry,” his nominator says. “The accomplishments of the executive director of an industry association are best measured by the success of the industry supported. Components of Indiana’s hardwood industry include the production of the timber serving as raw material, harvesting of timber, transporting logs and processing into lumber, veneer and byproducts, and markets for these products. Ray has established and led programs supporting all of these components.” Moistner has strengthened the relationship between IHLA and the Purdue Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, an FNR professor says, citing “political, logistical and seed funding support to a number of projects, such as the Hardwood Tree Improvement Center and the Hardwood Scanning Center. I cannot even count how many occasions, when I had an idea for a workshop or a seminar, Ray volunteered the help of IHLA staff to help promote, market and administer these workshops. I have never seen him say no to anything we asked of him.” This and that • Past assistant director of the Indiana Builders Association and executive director of the Indiana Lumber and Builders Supply Association. • Bachelor’s degree, Communications, Indiana University, 1985.
Back when Paul Marsh was stalking a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Economics, one of his Purdue classmates admits he “didn’t always appreciate Paul. He was always leading each class in grades and setting the curve at a much higher level than this old farm boy liked.” A decade later, Marsh was a regional manager, supervising farm managers for the Northern Trust Co.’s farm management division—and guiding a recent Purdue College of Agriculture graduate as well: “Not only my boss, but also a mentor. Paul’s farm management knowledge, coupled with his attention to detail and sense of how to act in a professional setting, provided a great example for me and for other young professionals just starting their careers.” By 1986, he was with Prudential, where he’s become “one of the most respected farm mortgage lenders in the nation, whose counsel is frequently sought not only by senior management, but also by outside groups,” writes the former co-worker in support of Certificate of Distinction recognition for Marsh. The former classmate says, “Many graduates achieve great heights in their careers, but Paul Marsh has always gone above and beyond, and that is what makes him so worthy of receiving this award.” In recent years, soil productivity and land conservation issues have been a focus. In 2016, he presented a report at the inaugural Soil Health Institute’s meeting in Louisville, Kentucky. He’s been associated with the Farm Foundation since 2010 and was on the Economics Task Force of the Soil Renaissance Project from 2014 to 2016. The nominator for Marsh’s Certificate of Distinction had lost touch with Marsh over the years, but after receiving a professional promotion at Purdue, “one of the first people I heard from was Paul. He took the time to provide advice about topics we should delve into and how we could improve our delivery techniques to reach a wider audience. In short, after more than three decades, he was still serving as a mentor both to me personally and to his alma mater.” This and that • Portfolio Manager, Chief Underwriter, Principal in the Agricultural Investments division of Prudential Mortgage Capital Company, Lisle, Illinois, since 1998. Responsible for credit risk review and asset management for a $3.94 billion mortgage portfolio secured by agricultural, agribusiness and timberland properties in 33 states, producing more than 100 crop types. Loan production total $835 million in 2015. • Bachelor of Science, 1972, Agribusiness Management, Purdue University; Master’s degree, 1979, Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University. • FarmHouse Fraternity, Purdue: pledge class co-chair for new chapter house fundraising campaign. • Drustar Agro-Industrial Project, Silistra, Bulgaria, 1976. Participated in a joint venture with Swift Packing Co. of Chicago to evaluate the agricultural potential to support a commercial-size livestock slaughter and packing facility. Spent four months in-country, supervising the management of an 800-acre seed demonstration plot. • 1980, member of the Grace Commission, also known as President’s Private Sector Survey on Cost Control. Served on the USDA Task Force.
Newton County bears numerous examples of John Frischie’s influence and impact. “John’s experiences as a teacher, team leader, administrator, and presenter have enabled him to assess a situation, develop a plan, and work with others to implement change,” said one of his nominators for the Certificate of Distinction. Frischie moved to Kentland in 1969, armed with a Purdue degree in Agricultural Education and memories of a junior-year internship at Seymour High School, “a foundation for my years as a teacher,” he wrote in 2012. His tenure with South Newton School Corp. began with 28 years as an ag education instructor and chairman of the vocational department. From 1997 to 2003, he was director of secondary education and technology, and for two years he was an administrative assistant. “The opportunity to see students’ expressions when they succeeded at something they said they couldn’t do motivated me to raise expectations for students,” he wrote. In 2016, when he received the Hall of Fame Award bestowed by the Kentland Area Chamber of Commerce, past students testified on his behalf. They perhaps noted his efforts to create opportunities in entrepreneurship areas, such as FFA career development activities, or hands-on activities at an array of test/ research plots. Others could cite the adult education classes in agribusiness management, farm computing, and mechanics. Frischie introduced the Junior Achievement program at South Newton in the late 1980s, was the first president and remains on the board today. Now director emeritus of the Newton County 4-H Fair Board, he served as a board member from 1987 to 2003 and as president from 1990 to 1995. Four new buildings or expansions at the fairgrounds occurred during those years. “One needs only to view his list of accomplishments and leadership responsibilities to understand that John can get things done and gather community support,” a nominator said. This and that • Charter president of Kentland Jaycees; on the original committees for the Kentland Corn Festival and George Ade Festival. • Member of Kentland Rotary Club since 2006, president in 2010-2011; trainer (55 clubs) and assistant governor coordinator for District 6540; on the administrative council and numerous committees; will be District Governor in 2020-21. In November was among 29 U.S. Rotarians who visited Rotarians in Mexico City; helped rebuild donated wheelchairs. • A member of the Newton County Purdue Extension Board since 2016. • Indiana Young Farmer Agribusiness Teacher of the Year in 1976, and Indiana Agriculture Teacher of the Year in 1997. • ‘“We were required to film a lesson we presented as a part of our coursework in Ag Ed at Purdue. I continued to videotape many of my classes to enable students to make up work missed. I knew that if I was bored by my own lesson as I reviewed it, just imagine what it would be like for a high school student. I often thought, ‘What would Dr. James Clouse, Bob Myers or Dale Butcher do in this situation?’”
Grand corporate strategies wither without leadership. When Dow AgroSciences (DAS) decided that seeds and traits warranted major investments of research and dollars, Katherine Armstrong was chosen to head a new research and development department — Trait Product Development. “Katherine was the obvious candidate,” says a retired vice president of DAS who worked with Armstrong for nearly two decades. “She embraced a daunting task. She successfully attracted outstanding talent from both inside and outside the company, developed novel capabilities and technologies, and delivered scientific as well as pipeline contributions that fully met or exceeded expectations. Much of Katherine and her team’s impact is just now starting to make its way into the hands of growers.” In another letter written in support of Armstrong receiving a Certificate of Distinction, Armstrong is praised for being “a stellar example of leadership, and she left a powerfully positive legacy with Dow AgroSciences R&D for scientific excellence and advancement.” The Indianapolis-based global company’s seed business doubled, thanks in part to the research strategy that she “brought to fruition and championed.” In the same vein, to steer reticent co-workers through Six Sigma, a productivity initiative, she chose a “unique focus” that “captured the heads and hearts of the R&D organization and drove dramatic changes and technical progress across her domain.” Ms. Armstrong helped strengthen the long Purdue–Dow AgroSciences relationship. The DAS-Purdue Joint Steering Team, now in its 11th year, has a goal of boosting the partnership between the two entities in research, teaching, and Extension. Armstrong was co-leader of the committee from 2008 to 2014, and she oversaw a steady flow of resources from DAS to the College of Agriculture, supporting both applied and basic plant sciences research, especially by graduate students. DAS specialists helped Purdue design the Indiana Corn and Soybean Innovation Center, which opened in 2016 and is the first field phenotyping facility in North America. “The relationship stands the test of time,” a DAS executive says. A recently announced discovery of a novel soybean gene that confers resistance to a particular pathogen is one result of the collaboration. “Due to the clear outcomes for both Purdue and Dow AgroSciences, Purdue embraced this university-industry connection, which now serves as a model for relationships with other universities as well. The strategy she set continues to thrive.” This and that • Bachelor’s degree (Biology) from the University of Virginia, 1978; master’s (Molecular and Population Genetics) from the University of Georgia, 1981. • “Mapping genes conditioning in vitro androgenesis in maize using RFLP analysis,” published in 1992, has been cited in scientific publications 62 times and as recently as 2016. • The listed inventor on six patents pertaining to the genetic modification of plants. • College of Agriculture’s Dean’s Advisory Council member, 2007-2010. • Worked 18 years for Dow AgroSciences; previously with United Agriseeds and Dow Chemical Company. • Commitment to STEM outreach includes serving as secretary (2009-2013) and editor (2012-present) for 500 Earth Sciences, a community group engaged in science outreach throughout central Indiana. • Current treasurer, past president of Indiana Society of Paleontology; is leading efforts to choose a state fossil.
2019Paul SingletonBrucevilleIN
Perhaps you purchased one of his handcrafted wooden items at a fundraising event. Such sales have raised more than $20,000 for worthy causes and individuals. Or, over the past 15 years, you might have met a former Vincennes University student who transferred to the College of Agriculture at Purdue, thanks to an endowed scholarship set up by the Knox County Purdue Ag Alumni Board. A second, fully endowed scholarship will be presented to a VU student this spring. Paul Singleton’s involvement in both scholarships was crucial. “Without his leadership and dedication,” fellow board member Jim Farris says, “I expect neither scholarship would have come to fruition.” Thousands of Hoosiers will never be directly aware of the impact that Singleton has had by being on the board of directors of the Evansville-based Community Foundation Alliance. “During Paul’s tenure, the nine counties of the alliance — Daviess, Gibson, Knox, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh and Warrick — have grown assets to $100 million,” says Jill Carpenter, the alliance’s executive director. “This is a direct result of board members like Paul who are willing to engage new practices for growing assets and to adopt new staffing models and procedures to engage donors and prospects in the communities we serve in southwestern Indiana.” As a USDA Farm Service Agency director, Singleton made and serviced more than 500 loans to beginning farmers in 11 counties over a 35-year period. He was FSA Manager of the Year in 1998. “Without his help, guidance and encouragement, I would not have been able to buy my first farm,” says Don Villwock, a retired Indiana Farm Bureau president. Singleton’s style does not attract attention, but it gets noticed: • “Paul takes his role seriously, always studying issues closely and carefully considering business brought before the board. Paul reflects a commitment to service above his own needs, which he quietly demonstrates with faithful attendance, active participation and, always, enthusiasm for the work being done.” — Carpenter. “His life and career path have been one of perpetual service to others. He stands tall among all who live and work in the agricultural arena in Indiana. His personal commitment to improving incomes and quality of life, with a special emphasis on helping young farmers, has been a cornerstone throughout his career.” — Villwock. • “I have known Paul my entire life and have always looked up to him with great respect because of his integrity, honesty and willingness to help others. He is a very selfless man who demonstrates humility — a great example for all of us.” — Julie Neal, USDA, Knox County Farm Service Agency. This and that • B.S., Animal Sciences, Purdue, 1969. Associate degree, Agriculture, Vincennes University, 1967. • USDA Farmers Home Administration / USDA Farm Service Agency, 1970-2005. Trained 18 loan officers. • 1975-present: Owns and operates 300-acre farm in Knox County. Strictly notilled since 1979. Has hosted the Knox County Soil and Water Conservation District No-till and Forestry Management field tours, Indiana Simmental State Field Day and the Indiana Beef Cattle Association state tour. • For 13 years, the farm has hosted Kindergarten Day, which has drawn about 1,200 students, plus teachers and chaperones. • 2001 Farmer of the Year, Knox County Soil and Water Conservation District. • Knox County Community Foundation board member for nine years; seven years on the Lilly Scholarship Selection Committee. • Freelandville Community Home board member for six years; president during a $175,000 fund drive for improvements to the nonprofit nursing home. • Contributed expertise and materials for improvements to the Life After Meth men’s and women’s group homes.
If Steve Shifley had stepped aside after The Ecology and Silviculture of Oaks was first published in 2002, the book’s co-author would still be held in high regard in forestry circles. But a second revision (Shifley is the lead scientist this time) is complete and a third printing is underway because those who rely on it sing its praises — loudly: • “The defining reference for oak forest ecology and management. … No other book provides an equivalent synthesis.” • “Comprehensive and authoritative.” • “The significance of this book is indicated by its nickname: the ‘oak bible.’ “ Shifley is stepping aside now, retiring after a 40-year career with the U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Research Station, which covers 20 Northeast and Midwest states. The senior research forester was based since 1988 at the University of Missouri in Columbia. “How do you measure the impact of a forestry research career?” says his most recent supervisor, Lynne M. Westphal, project leader and research social scientist. “Publications and citations? Students and early career professionals supported? Foresters helped? Community service? Steve has done it all. Steve also brought kindness and caring, for individuals and communities, to his work and his life. I and many others are indebted.” “Steve’s curriculum vitae is a testament to his productivity,” says Hank Stelzer, a Missouri state forestry Extension specialist. “But what it does not reveal is the professionalism and collegiality displayed throughout his career. Dr. Shifley has a natural ability to comprehend complex themes, ask simple questions germane to the issue at hand and pose significant ‘what-if’ questions on larger spatial and temporal scales. He indeed possesses all the attributes of a forward-thinking futurist.” Shifley’s research had a fundamental effect on how forests are measured, quantified and modeled. He helped develop LANDIS, a landscape modeling system that can work at various scales and incorporate a full range of ecosystem components and functions. “Dr. Shifley works in ‘Pasteur’s quadrant’ — that is, use-inspired science that combines ‘basic’ and ‘applied’ in order to pursue a deep quest for new knowledge with commitment to the application of that newly gained knowledge,” Westphal says. “He saw early on the potential of computer modeling to help analyze forest trends and management options.” The Forest Service’s Forest Vegetation Simulator incorporates Shifley’s models. Before retiring, William Brad Smith of the U.S. Forest Service worked with Shifley on the National Report on Forest Sustainability. “The future of our nation’s, and indeed, the world’s forests,” he says, “depends in part on the tireless efforts of researchers like Steve Shifley, who has not only been a leader of those of us in the profession but also a leader for the public face of forestry. I know of no one more deserving of the Certificate of Distinction.” This and that • B.S., Forest Production, 1976, Purdue; M.S., Forest Biometry, 1978, Purdue; Ph.D., Forest Biometry, 1990, University of Minnesota. • Hired as research forester at the North Central Forest Experiment Station in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1978; promoted to project leader of the forest modeling project in 1985. Joined the research lab in Columbia, Missouri, in 1988; project leader in 1989. In 1995, named principal biometrician, and remained in that role until retirement in early January 2019. • Associate editor, 2015-2018, of Forest Science, the flagship research journal for Society of American Foresters. • National Silviculture Award from the U.S. Forest Service, 2007. Karkhagne Award, Missouri Society of American Foresters’ highest honor, 2015. • More than 160 publications; 75 invited presentations; $3 million In competitive research funding. • 14 years as volunteer with Columbia Public Schools. Helped spearhead a community partnership to build a nature-based education and play space for daily use by 600-plus at-risk urban students; it opened in 2017. • Adjunct faculty, Purdue University; cooperative professor, University of Missouri.
2019JimMoseleyClarks HillIN
Nominations for the Certificate of Distinction Award occasionally turn up the question: “Doesn’t he/she already have one?” Sometimes — as in Jim Moseley’s case — nominators and those writing in support are astonished. “I was shocked. I can think of no other person more deserving.” “Frankly, I was very surprised when asked to write this letter. … I assumed that Jim had received a Certificate of Distinction years ago.” “I was shocked when I looked over the list of previous CD winners. … I may have abused my nomination threshold, but this is one we shouldn’t let by.” Jim Moseley started earning local, state, national and international respect soon after leaving Purdue with a bachelor’s degree in horticulture in 1973. He and his wife, Kathy, started farming near Clarks Hill. (Still there.) By 1984, he was in the first class of the Indiana Agriculture Leadership Program. Five years later, he was the agriculture advisor to the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. “His ability to bring diverse ideas and thoughts together in different groups is a hallmark of his career,” says Don Villwock, former Indiana Farm Bureau president. “Many extremely difficult issues have needed his thoughtful talents and skill set.” Spotted owls, old-growth forests and wetlands were among the more contentious issues. For two years, Moseley was the USDA’s assistant secretary of agriculture for natural resources and environment. Jane Ade Stevens, CEO of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council and Indiana Soybean Alliance, worked with him in Washington, D.C., at that time and recalls Moseley’s “steady leadership even in the most adverse conditions because of the highly political issues he had to manage.” He returned to Purdue as director of agricultural services and regulations for Indiana, then brought “cutting edge” ideas, Villwock says, as chairman and lead negotiator of the industry team for the National Pork Producers Council’s National Pork Dialogue. So when the U.S. Senate confirmed him as deputy secretary of the USDA, he was well prepared to oversee the day-to-day activities of the department from 2001 to 2005. He was designated the primary lead on the post-9/11 security needs of the nation’s food and agricultural system and worked on agricultural issues involving Afghanistan, Iraq, Africa and Asia. “Jim is one of the most thoughtful leaders I have ever known, and he is always willing to take on the most challenging issues,” says Jay Akridge, Purdue’s provost and executive vice president for academic affairs and diversity, and former dean of the College of Agriculture. Villwock calls Moseley “the farmer leader that many to this day call upon to resolve conflict and find positive win-win solutions.” Beth Archer, executive director of AgrIInstitute, says Moseley “lives the service that he encourages from others. Jim is a bit of an unsung hero in that the bulk of his impact and success is not immediately obvious. Those who have worked with Jim are fully aware that he truly makes a difference in large and small ways. He has earned a deep respect from his colleagues and friends.” This and that • Co-chair of AGree, a Washington, D.C.-based food and agriculture policy generator. • Has created opportunities for College of Agriculture faculty and students to work with him on his farm. Examples include offering students the opportunity to work and then encouraging shared ownership with those who graduated and needed an opportunity to farm; and helping his children each establish their own independent farm business from the core farm he and Kathy built over the years. • Recent activities include chairman of the Farm, Ranch and Rural Advisory Committee for the EPA, Steering Committee member of 25x’25, board member of Farm Safety 4 Kids, Lafayette Community Foundation and chair of the Eisenhower Foundation Agricultural Program. • Board member, American Farmland Trust.
2019KennethA.HusemanCedar LakeIN
W. Dean Jones, director of Purdue Extension in Lake County from 1983 to 2003, never forgot a long-ago lesson from a county agent whose tenure dates to the 1950s. In every county, the agent said, you’ll find an outstanding agricultural leader who is dedicated to the good of the community — and places that above his personal gain. Someone like Kenneth A. Huseman. No one with passing knowledge wonders why four consecutive deans of Purdue Agriculture — Vic Lechtenberg, Randy Woodson, Jay Akridge and Karen Plaut — have chosen to rely on Huseman’s counsel and expertise. A primary, but not sole, connection is PCARET — Purdue’s Council for Agricultural Research, Extension and Teaching, a lay advisory and legislative advocacy group for the dean. Huseman has represented Purdue’s group since 1980 and joined the national group, known as CARET, in 1994. • “Ken was, and is, outstanding in this role,” Lechtenberg says. “He understands the broader political context in which funding requests must be framed. Ken’s personal relationships with several members of the Indiana congressional delegation enabled him to be unusually influential and effective.” • “Ken was extraordinarily helpful to me when I was first named dean,” Akridge says. “He had already accumulated years of experience as a CARET representative. I learned much from Ken about how to best share our story with our federal elected officials. He was always well informed, passionate and articulate.” • “I had no experience with CARET when I came to Purdue in 2010,” Plaut says. “He showed me how to build relationships with politicians and how he identified the Senate or House members’ strengths. His vast experience and warm style make it easy for people to listen to and work with him.” U.S. Rep. Peter J. Visclosky, who has represented Indiana’s 1st District in Congress since 1985, is very familiar with Huseman’s skills. “I have consistently found Ken’s advocacy efforts to be effective and informative, evidence-based and, most importantly, focused on the local farmers and students in Indiana,” he says. Robert E. Guernsey worked 20-plus years with Huseman on state and national advisory and advocacy issues. “It was always our intent to customize our request for funding for that congressional office,” he says. “Ken always had a way of crafting our request as being very credible. Ken has a way of making friends with whomever he meets, and that includes Washington, D.C.” Purdue Extension gave Huseman its Friend of Extension Award in 2014. “His ability to form meaningful relationships with county, state and federal legislators has been an asset to the mission of Purdue Extension,” says Jason Henderson, director of Purdue Extension. Henderson, who arrived in 2013, says Huseman “was a tremendous help to me as I was learning and getting acquainted with my new position, making my transition so much easier.” Donya Lester, former director of the Purdue Ag Alumni Association, became director of public engagement for the College in 2011. “My job was to support the CARET delegates, but they took me to school,” she says. “Purdue has one of the most effective CARET delegations in the country, and Ken Huseman is one of the dedicated people who has made that so. Ken showed me the ropes of the advocacy game. I learned what worked, and didn’t, on Capitol Hill. And I watched as he helped to mentor a new CARET delegate. It wasn’t just enough to do his job. He taught all the rest of us how to do ours.” This and that • B.S., Agriculture, Purdue, 1961; M.S., Agricultural Economics, 1966. • Swift & Co., (Chicago Board of Trade), commodity merchandiser, trader, market analyst, 1961-1970. • Huseman Farm, Cedar Lake, Indiana, 1970-present. • Lake County: Purdue Cooperative Extension Board, 1980-2015; Soil and Water Conservation District, 1975-1992; Planning Commission, 2005-present; Drainage Advisory Board, 1998-present.
2019Dana and TedHuberBordenIN
The wine industry is an increasingly important piece of Indiana’s agritourism industry. Dana and Ted Huber are two reasons why. “Their personal impact on the growth of the wine industry in Indiana cannot be overstated,” says Christian E. Butzke, a professor of enology in Purdue’s Department of Food Science and enologist for the Purdue Wine Grape Team. “The Hubers are one of the most dynamic and entrepreneurially spirited wifeand- husband teams that I have encountered in my 25 years working for the U.S. wine industry. I have traveled around the world with Ted and Dana as they joined our international Extension classes, and I have been most impressed by their ability to rapidly implement new production techniques they observe during our visits. That keeps their Indiana operation on the cutting edge of agricultural technology.” Huber’s Orchard, Winery and Vineyards is on the western edge of Clark County, which hugs the Ohio River in southern Indiana. The seventh-generation operation began with 80 acres. Now more than 600,000 people annually visit 650 acres that include 65 acres of vineyards, making Huber’s the state’s largest estate-bottled winery, producing 18 varieties of grapes and 650,000 pounds under normal weather conditions. The winery opened in 1978. Huber’s now also includes a farm market, a banquet facility for 1,200, children’s farm park, ice cream shop, distillery, bakery, cheese shop and cafe. Orchards and gardens produce apples, peaches, pumpkins, a variety of berries, several varieties of squash, Christmas trees and a wide assortment of seasonal produce. In the late 1990s, the Hubers let former farm broadcaster Jeanette K. Merritt produce radio programming at their farm. “They were at the forefront of agritourism and led the way in nontraditional agriculture and its impact on Indiana,” says Merritt, who also spent 11 years with the Purdue Wine Grape Team and is now director of checkoff programs for Indiana Pork. “I believe Ted and Dana are some of the most highly regarded individuals that we have in Indiana’s agritourism industry.” The state boasts more than 100 wineries, and the Hubers “have always taken time to work with wineries and help them through the process of creating a space that benefits the entire industry. They are unselfish with their time and talents. They have held the belief that if the Indiana wine industry is strong, it benefits everyone.” The president of WineAmerica echoes that thought. “Ted and Dana are the ultimate ‘doers’ and collaborators,” says Jim Trezise, head of the Washington, D.C.- based national association. “Their combined commitment, collaborations and collegiality are what makes them so special.” Butzke, longtime chairman of the Indy International Wine Competition held at Purdue in conjunction with the Indiana State Fair, says the Hubers’ “accomplishment-based political clout in Indiana and beyond has much protected the Purdue Wine Grape Team’s existence from political uncertainty over the years. Ted’s national service for the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States and the American Craft Distillers Association has greatly improved the ability of family craft distillers to flourish, create jobs and impact their state’s economy.” Ted Huber is chairman of the council’s small-distiller membership committee and vice president of the association. This and that • Family-owned business was founded by Simon Huber in Baden-Baden, Germany, in 1843. • Dana is vice president of marketing and public relations at Huber’s. An Indiana University Kelley School of Business graduate, she joined the business in 2003 after working for Humana, Citicorp and Kindred Healthcare. • Ted is head winemaker and president of Huber’s and master distiller for Starlight Distillery. • Both are frequent judges at the Indy International Wine Competition. Huber’s has won the Indiana Governor’s Cup, given to the winningest winery, several times. Ted has won national winemaker of the year, and Vignoles — which is produced at Huber’s — won the most prestigious award, International Wine of the Year, in 2013.
The legendary Mauri Williamson led the Purdue University Ag Alumni Association for 37 years. In 1990, he more or less hand-picked Donya Lester to succeed him. No pressure. Lester retired last year after 28 years of building and nurturing relationships with 33,000-plus alumni. A key to her successful tenure? Not standing still. “To me, one of the hallmarks of Donya’s leadership was her ability to continually reinvent how we approach alumni relations,” says Karen Plaut, the Glenn W. Sample Dean of the College of Agriculture at Purdue University. Among her many reinventions; • In 2000, Lester instituted the College of Agriculture’s consolidated Homecoming alumni reunion, Ag Tailgate, an event that grew steadily. In 2013, she launched a new Homecoming event, the Alumni Pancake Breakfast, and tied it to a major spring student event, the Moonlight Pancake Breakfast. Students handle all food preparation for the fall event, raising money for their spring event while engaging with alumni. Attendance routinely exceeds 500. • The Ag Alumni Fish Fry has an 80-year history. Lester led a major redesign in 2001 — securing a larger off-campus venue, shifting the event to Saturday from Friday, revamping ticket sales and making child care available. Perhaps most importantly, a keynote speaker was added. A packed house — 1,500 seats — in 2002 heard former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole. Ticket revenue increased nearly 90 percent that year, and the net cost to the alumni association decreased $4,500. In 2004, the Fish Fry moved to an even larger venue (room for 2,500) at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. • In 2005, Lester initiated a redesign of the College’s commencement reception. A pre-finals chili supper for seniors was drawing about 300 people, and half that many went to the small reception after the ceremony. Now, a reception on commencement day includes exhibits, “gathering points” for each academic department and gift bags for graduates. The May 2005 reception drew more than 900 guests, and more than 450 attended in December. Those numbers have continued to grow. “Parents and graduates have praised the event as a fitting capstone to the Purdue Agriculture experience,” Plaut says. • The Ag Alumni Board of Directors has never been more diverse. A restructuring placed representatives from every department in the College on the board, as well as undergraduate and graduate student representatives. “Her intentional focus on bringing more recent alumni to the board is paying real dividends,” Plaut says. • The Ag Alumni Mentoring Program that Lester launched in 2012 pairs alumni with current undergraduates. Relationships are built. Careers are enhanced. • In partnership with Indiana Farm Bureau, she helped establish the Purdue Collegiate Farm Bureau chapter and served as the club’s staff advisor for more than a decade. Williamson helped found the National Agricultural Alumni and Development Association. A member since 1986 and president from 1994 to 1996, Lester hosted the national conference in 1988 and led the launch of the awards program in 1991. She received the organization’s Ray A. Miller Professional Achievement Award in 2015. The current president, Renee J. Keese, says Lester set a “stellar example” and was “always well organized, prepared, eloquent and beloved. She represented the agricultural college extremely well.” This and that: • B.S.A., Animal Science, University of Georgia, 1981; M.S., Animal Breeding and Genetics, Virginia Tech, 1983. • International Brangus Breeders Association, director of performance programs, 1983-1986. • University of Georgia, roles in development, student recruiting, alumni relations, 1986-1990. • In 2011, Lester took on the duties of director of public engagement for the College of Agriculture. She helped connect the College to members of Congress and their staffs, and she trained volunteers to advocate for the College with local, state and federal decision-makers. • As a keynote speaker and leadership trainer, she has presented to state and national agriculture organizations across the country. • 2018, Alumni Award of Excellence, University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Science Alumni Association; 2016, Sagamore of the Wabash, Gov. Mike Pence; 2001, Honorary Commissioner of Agriculture, Lt. Gov. Joseph Kernan.

Tom Wiltrout has left the Dow AgroSciences global headquarters in Indianapolis, but only literally. His influence lingers in room after room, and likely will do so for years to come.

“Tom’s personal moral standards and relationship skills, together with his intelligence and experience of a life dedicated to agriculture, has delivered so much value — not only in business and technology development, but also in developing and motivating a whole generation of new leaders who will shape the future of this industry,” a former Dow chief executive officer said.

Former colleagues consider him a catalyst for driving innovation forward for an industry that must soon feed 9 billion people.

That’s high praise for a Kosciusko County native with bachelor’s (Forestry, 1975) and master’s (Weed Science, 1976) degrees from Purdue University who spent the first half of his four-decade career on the agrochemical side of the business, when DowElanco was the name.

Eventually he became a pre-eminent leader in seeds and traits development and advancement. “Tom Wiltrout helped shape the current seed and biotechnology landscape in the marketplace today,” said one of his nominators. “Tom, who has unrivaled strategic understanding of the seed and biotech industry, also has the rare ability to clearly communicate it. His vision and strategic thinking were key drivers of the seeds and biotech business in Dow AgroSciences, and he was a catalyst for the (company) investments in research and acquisitions in Indiana and around the world.”

Risa DeMasi once headed the American Seed Trade Association board.

“His thoughtful contributions and leadership during his tenure on the Board of Directors for ASTA were instrumental as we developed the strategic plan which guides our activities today,” she said. “It was an honor to serve with him and to have the opportunity to learn from him. I’m better for knowing Tom.”

Wiltrout oversaw the corn and technology business for Dow AgroSciences during the development of Herculex traits. This innovative trait enables top-performing corn hybrids to reach their maximum yield potential by combining high-yielding genetics with consistent, season-long control of European corn borer, corn rootworm, western bean cutworm, black cutworm and fall armyworm. Wiltrout’s leadership during the first commercial product launch helped shape many strategic decisions.

He also led efforts on negotiating agreements and development of SmartStax, a widely used corn technology that offers reduced refuge requirements of only 5 percent in the Corn Belt.

His work took him to every corner of the world as he advanced agricultural technology through collaboration, negotiation, and trust-building. Wiltrout was known as a hard and passionate, yet fair, negotiator of agreements. “We were able to develop critical collaborations for Dow AgroSciences and huge future value for farmers with major companies,” a former CEO said, “thanks to the respect, trust and knowledge that Tom has earned in this industry.”

A seed company colleague who has served on boards with Wiltrout put it this way: “Tom’s knowledge of the world seed industry is as strong as anyone I know. His ability to process current events and how they might affect the future is typically where most of our conversations end up. He is really good at working through possible outcomes. He is one of the best strategy guys I know.”

An increasingly important focus for the industry and consumers is healthy oils. “Tom really helped shape the industry,” a colleague recalls, referring to canola and sunflower products. “He was involved in the first commercial product launch and led/was involved in many of the strategic decisions on how companies invested and aligned themselves across the industry.”

A colleague who served with Tom on the board of directors for AgrIInstitute, a leadership development organization, recalled Wiltrout’s contributions as the group was at a pivotal point of rebranding. “Tom has an uncanny ability to cast vision for a group,” the board member said.

• Retired from Dow AgroSciences in 2014; his last position was Global Seeds, Traits and Oils Strategy Leader. Previously: Biotechnology Platform: Global Business Leader — Corn; Director and Project Success Leader (insect resistance product); General Manager, United AgriSeeds. For DowElanco Specialty Products: Manager, Marketing Services, Marketing. For Elanco Specialty Products: Manager, New Products, District Sales, Communications, Market Research.

• Member of these and other boards: Illinois Foundation Seeds Inc., Mertec LLC, Verneuil Semences, Seed Genetics Inc., and Barenbrug Seeds, The Netherlands.

• Recipient of the College of Agriculture’s Distinguished Alumni Award in 2009.

2017ChrisHurtWest LafayetteIN

When Chris Hurt speaks, people listen. They read what he writes. They care what he thinks. They trust him.

Who are they? Decision makers. Members of the agricultural committees in the U.S. Congress. USDA statisticians and economic analysts. Federal Reserve banks in Chicago and Kansas City. State and national boards that cover a wide agricultural spectrum: dairy, poultry, beef, pork, corn, soybeans, etc. He gets 300 interview requests each year — from USA Today and the New York Times to the National Hog Farmer and the Corn and Soybean Digest.

But Dr. Hurt can see the big picture because he knows agriculture up close, from ground level. He joined Purdue University’s Department of Agricultural Economics in 1981, bearing a master’s degree from Cornell and a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois. Before that he gained experience as a Cargill grain merchant, a farm supply manager, a community college ag teacher, and an Illinois family hog farmer. Those jobs aren’t found in ivory towers. His perspective is grounded in the real world.

As one of his nominators for the Purdue Ag Alumni Certificate of Distinction put it, “It would be difficult to overstate the contribution that Dr. Hurt has made to the understanding of agricultural markets for a wide-ranging audience that includes peers, students, agricultural producers, professionals, practitioners and policy makers.”

The “wide-ranging audience” includes those who visit FarmDocDaily, a website sponsored by Illinois, Purdue and Ohio State universities. The site has 45,000 unique visitors per month and 1.2 million annual page views.

Dr. Hurt coordinates Purdue’s Ag Outlook program. Ten economists cover their specialty areas — such as crop production costs, input prices, ag trade and ag policy — and Chris then delivers programs for grain outlook, livestock outlook, and general agriculture outlook. The foundation of his success lies in identifying economic issues that are important to decision makers, then developing educational programs to promote understanding of the issues, providing analysis of alternatives, and developing aids to assist decision makers who want to test the outcomes of alternatives for their individual situation.

Chris reaches 6,000 to 8,000 individuals a year in face-to-face educational programs. He makes presentations in nearly 60 counties each year. He has helped train about 80 Purdue ag and natural resources Extension educators on how to use materials with clients in all 92 counties. Local crop farm clients receive valuable information thanks to Dr. Hurt’s training programs for Certified Crop Advisors. Banking associations ask him to help train loan officers, who then rely on Dr. Hurt’s income, market outlook, and government programs information as they evaluate requests for agricultural loans. Sales and management personnel in the seed, feed, chemical, and machinery industries rely on his expertise.

“Dr. Hurt has remained focused on helping our Ag Community better understand both grain and livestock markets by extending the research and knowledge generated by the Ag Economics Department out to the people,” wrote another nominator. “He often presented Ag Outlook information in my county during the annual Fall Ag Outlook Campaign. The large crowds generated by these meetings were in large part due to the respect my agricultural clientele had for Chris and the information he delivered. Similar stories could be told in many other counties.”

Chris Hurt’s influence has grown in part because he “provides the most comprehensive and the best quality analysis that is available,” a nominator said. “Dr. Hurt’s career has exemplified the mission of the land-grant university at the highest level.”

Chris Hurt has developed educational programming for these (and more) issue areas:

• Economic impacts of biofuels

• Government farm program decisions

• World food shortages

• Farm income situation, economics of drought

• 30-year commodity price cycles

• PED virus education

• Agricultural marketing education

Some of the professional organizations that have sought Chris Hurt’s training and guidance:

• Indiana Bankers Association, American Bankers Association, Midwest Bankers School, Chicago Federal Reserve Bank, Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank.

• Mid-America Cooperative Council, Indiana Corn Growers, Indiana Farm Bureau, American Farm Bureau, Indiana Soybean Association, United Soybean Board, Farm Foundation, Ag Equipment Manufacturers Association, American Society of Ag Engineers.

• Indiana Pork Producers Association, National Pork Producers Association, Indiana Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers, National Dairy Producers Association, National Broiler Council, National Egg Board, U.S Meat Export Federation.

A sampling of individual and group awards:

• Agricultural and Applied Economics (AAEA) Outstanding Group Extension/Outreach Award for FarmDoc, 2014.

• Paul A. Funk Team Award for Excellence, 2013, College of Agriculture, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois. FarmDoc team member.

• Purdue University Cooperative Extension Specialist Association (PUCESA) Team Award: Managing Moldy Corn Team, 2010

2017VirginiaR.FerrisWest LafayetteIN

Virginia Ferris took the long way to academic and professional success. Not that she had a choice.

She labored in obscurity yet was one of the world’s foremost experts on the soybean cyst nematode when Purdue University hired her in 1965 as an assistant professor. Ten years had passed since she left an identical position at Cornell University, where she’d earned a Ph.D. She used her final Cornell paycheck to buy a microscope. Her husband and major collaborator, John, joined Purdue’s entomology faculty in 1958. Virginia set up a home lab, conducted research as a freelance consultant, and waited for an opportunity to prove her greatness. When that time finally came, it didn’t take long for the first woman appointed to the College of Agriculture faculty to make her mark.

Nine years later (1974) she was a full professor in the Department of Entomology, having already added associate professor, assistant dean of the graduate school, and assistant provost to her resumé. By then she’d also been president of the Society of Nematologists, associate editor of the Journal of Nematology, and recipient of the Helen B. Schleman Gold Medallion Award.

What solidified her national and international standing came at the turn of the century, when she and fellow researchers — including her husband, John, Jamal Faghihi and Rick Vierling — identified genes in soybeans that provided resistance to the cyst nematode, a destructive plant parasite that has cost soybean farmers untold millions of dollars.

“Nematology was a young science,” Dr. Ferris said in a 2005 interview. “I grew up right along with it.” Years before gaining access to state-of-the-art scientific equipment in Whistler Agricultural Research Building, she made good use of her microscope. Back when she and John were traveling extensively, collecting species of nematodes, she even processed soil samples in hotel bathrooms.

Indiana’s state chemist and seed commissioner, Robert D. Waltz, is a former student and colleague of Ferris.

“Few careers with which I have been made aware share the breadth of reach and stretch of scholarship demonstrated by the career of Dr. Virginia Ferris,” he wrote in a letter recommending her for the Certificate of Distinction. He said she “exemplified the authority of a respected academic pedagogue, with high professorial expectations of her students.” He hadn’t forgotten the occasional “hidden personal sacrifice and contribution … for a successful student in a time of need. Her level of expected rigor in student performance was matched by her equally high level of concern for a student’s success.”

Nor had he forgotten the doors that didn’t open early in her career.

“Her engagement with the practice of her discipline as an academic in nematology could be characterized as more confrontational and combative than an accolade of recognized accomplishment,” Dr. Waltz wrote. “Her gender was seen apparently as barrier to academic and administrative recognition in a time when women were not privy to the full rights of her male academic colleagues. Her persistence and her … successes have paved the way for those who have followed her lead and her example as a woman engaged in male-dominated academic pursuits.”

Dr. Ferris has often spoken about the role of women in science and academia. Some of her listeners “find the stories hard to believe,” she said.

“Women have proven themselves — there’s no question about it.” And Virginia Ferris has paved the way for many of them by proving herself through her scientific achievements and dedication to the pursuit of research excellence.

• The Kansas native was an undergraduate at Wellesley College, near Boston. When she entered Cornell, she was the lone female incoming graduate student in plant pathology. She earned a Ph.D. in 1954.

• Assistant professor, Cornell, 1954-55; assistant professor, Purdue, 1965-70; associate professor, Purdue, 1970-74; assistant dean of graduate school, Purdue, 1971-75; assistant provost, Purdue, 196-79; professor, Purdue, 1974-present.

• Phi Beta Kappa. Fellow: National Science Foundation, Indiana Academy of Science, Society of Nematologists, European Society of Nematology.

• Helen B. Schleman Gold Medallion Award, 1973; FinOvation Award for CystX, Farm Industry News, 2000; Dean’s 2001 Agricultural Team Award for CystX Technology, 2001.

• Society of Nematologists: president, 1969-70; vice president, 1968-69; secretary, 1965-68. Associate editor, Journal of Nematology, 1974-76. Governing council member, Society of Systematic Zoology, 1979-82.

• Purdue University Graduate Council, 1971-75. Faculty fellow, Earhart Hall, 1971-2000. President’s committee to elect provost, 1973. Provost’s committee to select dean of agriculture, 1980. Chair, Dean’s Leadership Review Committee, 1995.

• Dr. Ferris was the first woman to ever buy a ticket to the Purdue Ag Fish Fry. Her request was met with resistance from her male colleagues and the Fish Fry organizers, but, as she has done so many times in her career, she insisted that she be treated fairly and equally.


“Father of Indiana’s corn checkoff program.”

Dean Eppley has achieved a great deal, but the Wabash County farmer is perhaps best known for what happened in 2007, after 20 years of trying.

“Without Dean’s determination and willingness to put years of time into getting a corn checkoff passed in Indiana, we probably would never have gotten one passed,” said Dennis Maple, former president of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council. “He was there in the trenches, asking our national organization for more money for one year to help Indiana get it done. And finally, our state passed the checkoff. We have Dean to thank.”

The checkoff, administered by the ICMC, was first established in 2001. In July 2007, after a vote by the Indiana General Assembly, a new corn checkoff program went into effect to manage funds collected at the first point of sale. Legislators updated the law in 2012. The assessment — ½-cent ($0.005) on each bushel of corn marketed in the state — does not apply to popcorn, seed corn or sweet corn. The purpose is to fund research, promotion and educational programs that enhance corn production and use, and to distribute industry information.

As noted by Dennis Maple, one of those who nominated Eppley for the Certificate of Distinction, Indiana had no ethanol plants before adopting the corn checkoff program. Now it has about a dozen. “Dean helped promote ethanol as a new market for corn, and it has made a significant impact on Indiana and its farmers,” he said.

Dean Eppley graduated from Purdue University in 1957 with a bachelor’s degree in agriculture. The next year he married Carolyn Schuler. Three children and just a few years later, he and a son, Barry, work Pleasant Home Farm’s 1,200 acres of corn, 1,000 acres of soybeans and 200 acres of alfalfa.

He was a no-till pioneer in the mid-1960s. “To me, ‘plow’ is a four-letter word,” he told Indiana Prairie Farmer in 2011, when he and Barry were advocating vertical tillage. “I believe the plow is one of the chief pieces of equipment for enhancing erosion on soil that has any degree of slope.”

Back when no-till farming was a “novel concept,” he said, “I never heard any negative comments directly from neighbors, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there weren’t some conversations around the area about, ‘What’s that nut trying this time?’“

He’s worked with those neighbors over the years on the county Soil and Water Conservation District board, the Wabash County Farm Bureau, the Bowen Five-County Mental Health Board, and the Wabash County Board of Commissioners.

Dean has been a delegate to Corn Congress, a function of the National Corn Growers Association. He retired from the association’s Research & Business Action Team, where his last official action was to vote to approve the formation of the National Agriculture Genotyping Center in Fargo, North Dakota.

He represents Indiana corn farmers on the U.S. Meat Export Federation and has traveled far and wide promoting red meat products for export.

He’s been a longtime member of and held leadership roles for the Indiana Corn Marketing Council and the Indiana Corn Growers Association. He helped those two organizations and the Indiana Soybean Alliance “forge one of the most unique partnerships in the country,” said Jane Ade Stevens, chief executive officer of the alliance. “These three organizations share one staff and office. No other state does this. It is a credit to Dean’s vision to see how this partnership made sense to Indiana farmers and approved its concept as a board member.”

Dean Eppley, she said, is a “top-notch, forward-thinking farmer.”

Dennis Maple, of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council, echoed that praise.

“Without Dean’s leadership,” he said, “the Indiana corn industry would look much different today.”

• Dean was a founding member of the Wabash County Historical Museum, serving from 1999 to 2008. He was instrumental in making sure the county’s agricultural roots remained in the picture. “Dean’s expertise in agriculture was invaluable in the development of the museum’s farming exhibit,” read a quote from a certificate presented to him. “His devotion to the project helped turn the idea for a museum into a reality.”

• He teaches a Sunday school class and sings in the church choir. A former member of Purdue’s marching and concert bands, he was active in the Wabash Area Community Theater for several years — and was Mayor Shinn in the 1997 production of “The Music Man.”

2017DonaldJ.BiehleNorth VernonIN

In 1977, the State of Indiana transferred 900 acres in Jennings County to Purdue University. The brand-new Southeast Purdue Agricultural Center needed a superintendent. The ink was barely dry on Don Biehle’s bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Economics, but the Purdue University graduate — and Jennings County native — got the job.

He stayed 39 years.

Biehle retired in June 2016. During his tenure SEPAC expanded to more than 2,400 acres, and in 2015 an estimated 64 research projects were underway, involving more than 50 researchers, graduate students, Extension educators, and industry collaborators. That year nearly 1,150 people attended more than 30 Extension education programs at a research center that is widely regarded as efficient, effective, and impactful.

So clearly Don Biehle knew what he was doing. How he did it was impressive, too.

“Don demonstrated how to run an operation, work with campus and state Extension staff, develop ideas into plans that will benefit producers in the area — and how to be a true and honest human being,” said Jason Tower, who supervises the Southern Indiana Purdue Agricultural Center (SIPAC) in Dubois County. “As a young superintendent, he taught me how to lead and make suggestions to folks in a way that gets ideas across and accomplished, without being overbearing.”

A nominator for the Certificate of Distinction said Biehle’s “collaborative and supportive nature, plus his ‘can-do’ attitude, greatly enhanced researchers’ abilities to conduct practical agricultural research. His insight and knowledge of local agricultural concerns provided researchers with focus and helped ensure that research results were applicable to growers and input providers through southeast Indiana.”

Eileen Kladivko, a professor in Purdue’s Department of Agronomy, has conducted a considerable amount of applied crop production research at SEPAC. She recalls Biehle going “out of his way, on a regular basis, to make our research work there more productive and easier to accomplish. He and his staff have helped us flesh out crazy ideas so that we could test out something new. Over the past 30 years, many times Don went the extra mile to help me or my graduate students accomplish an experiment in the late hours, Saturdays, or under other unusual circumstances. SEPAC has grown into a model of integration of research and Extension in our state.”

Installation of soil drainage systems, development of no-till crop production techniques, development of wetlands for wildlife and fire protection, adoption of precision technologies for field research, and automated weather stations are among the innovations that Don encouraged and supported at SEPAC.

Jennings County is also home to MUTC — the Muscatatuck Urban Training Center, operated by the Indiana National Guard. In fact, MUTC and SEPAC are next-door neighbors, and Don Biehle was instrumental in developing a partnership: A land/feed exchange program that provides grain for MUTC animals, educational support for agricultural development teams readying for deployment to Afghanistan, and the use of various SEPAC sites for training exercises.

Maj. Stephen Spencer, MUTC’s deputy base operations manager, said Biehle helped replicate an “agrarian city in a failed state” that is used to train “war fighters, peacekeepers, emergency responders, and diplomats for the ever-changing challenges in a world of persistent conflict. The education he provides and flexibility he offers to MUTC has worldwide implications for soldiers and civilians going into harm’s way.”

Creating (and seizing) opportunities, thinking ahead, going the extra mile — those are hallmarks of good managers. John Poehlmann, a retired assistant director of the Missouri Agricultural Experiment Station, saw it firsthand years ago during discussions with fellow members of Division A-7 (Agricultural Research Management) of the American Society of Agronomy.

“Most of us were debating how GPS, yield monitoring and similar technology might have a positive effect,” Poehlmann recalled. “Don was presenting results of how this system was already returning new information to himself and the scientists working at his station.”

• Works with the Jennings County Growers Co-op to teach farmers how to use high-tunnel technologies.

• A township fire department member for 34 years (chief, grant writer, president, secretary, treasurer). Leadership positions with the county Emergency Management Board, 911 Board, Soil and Water Conservation District Board (Distinguished Service Award, 1988; Conservationist of the Year, 1990).

• Frederick L. Hovde Award of Excellence in Education Service, 2013, Indiana Farm Bureau.

• Hoosier Chapter of the Soil & Water Conservation Society of America, Conservation Accomplishment Certificate of Achievement, 1990.


People who know Robert D. Culler call him Bob. Or Cul. They appreciate his dry sense of humor, his calm demeanor, his no-nonsense approach, and the way he tirelessly shares knowledge. They consider him a go-to person, a data-based, fact-driven manager with unmatched technical skills. They praise his work ethic, his honesty, and how he works to do the right thing in the most positive manner.

“The work experience and accomplishments described above paint a picture of a very impressive career,” wrote one of his nominators for the Certificate of Distinction. “This does not tell the full story of Bob’s contributions to agriculture.”

That story started in Clay City High School and Vincennes University. Purdue University awarded him a bachelor’s degree in food science in 1972. His master’s degree was earned at Iowa State University; he studied beef tenderness as it related to carcass grades, and three peer-reviewed scientific journal papers were published based on his research projects.

The corporate world beckoned. Promotions followed accomplishments:

• At Hormel Foods Corp.’s Research & Development Division, significantly extending the shelf life of pork loins with modern atmospheric packaging.

• At Land O’ Frost’s Product Development Group, leading the development of the industrial and food service product lines, then guiding the quality team at the Searcy, Ark., plant, a large sliced meats operation.

• At Sara Lee Corp.’s Bil Mar Foods Inc. division, he was corporate director of quality assurance, and he developed the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) systems for turkey harvesting and processing.

• Kent Quality Foods made him vice president of quality assurance, and he led the implementation of the HACCP system. An expansion during his tenure grew daily production from 30,000 pounds to 160,000 pounds.

Culler retired in 2013, but he soon formed Culler Consulting LLC. Large and small clients seek his wisdom on regulatory compliance, produce quality, and processing issues.

Since 2013 he’s been director of regulatory affairs for the Michigan Meat Association. “His understanding of federal- and state-level policy, coupled with his passion to find solutions for industry, puts him in a strong position to advocate for our members,” another nominator wrote.

Culler played a significant role in developing the Michigan Specialized Retail Meat Processing Variance Program. The plan, aimed to meet federal Model Food Code requirements, is being considered as a national model.

In their nomination letters, several colleagues noted that Culler’s career has spanned challenging times for the food business: “The complexity of regulatory compliance continues to grow, and Bob has been very willing to share his vast experience on continuous improvement, food safety, and compliance, especially with smaller operators. Whenever a foodborne illness or a product recall is avoided, all of agriculture benefits. His counseling, seminars, and articles play a significant role in avoiding these types of unfortunate food safety events.”

“His skill,” wrote another nominator, “to take difficult situations and create win-win opportunities has touched all who have had the opportunity to work with or for him. It would be easy for a person in his position to just do his job without representing and championing many causes for the meat industry. His dedication to help small businesses and entrepreneurs work their way through technical and regulatory issues is stellar.”

Culler was another nominator’s first boss. “No one joining the meat industry, especially an East Coaster with a newly minted degree in Human Nutrition and Foods and no meat industry experience or background, could have asked for a better mentor and coach,” she wrote. “Bob was and is, first and foremost, a teacher. His patience and ‘no question too basic’ approach gave me a solid foundation (for) my 36-year career.”

A former Boilermaker who hired Culler at Land O’ Frost recalls an employee who had a high school education. He said Culler “taught and mentored her to become a statistician. She went from an hourly worker to one of the key members of our technical staff of professionals — and is still in that role 30 years later.”

“He not only changed her life but many others, as he continually brings out their strengths and then mentors the pathway to success. This trait does not show up on a bio or CV.”

• He was president (1998-2002) of the Michigan Meat Association and received that group’s Outstanding Service Award in 2009. He received a Hometown Leadership Award for helping bring the 2004 American Association of Meat Processors national convention to Grand Rapids, Michigan.

• Culler has been a presenter or coordinator for more than 20 meat processing seminars for groups in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois. He is the author of 30-plus articles, programs and white papers for small meat/food processors.


It is possible that rural Indiana has never had a better friend than Janet Ayres.

She has conducted more than 2,000 workshops and trained 65,000 leaders and professionals in the areas of leadership and rural development. More than 200 Indiana communities have benefited from her efforts to develop leadership skills to deal with change and conflict.

In 2012, she launched the Rural Issues series of Extension publications. The series features a set of factsheets on rural Indiana. Counties are grouped into three categories (rural, urban, and mixed) in order to analyze changes over the past decade, identify issues and highlight policy implications. Among the topics covered so far: Growth and decline, aging, poverty, poverty and teen childbearing, community banks, population trends, food insecurity and methamphetamine use. The series is a definitive source for legislators, scholars and others.

“Through her many Extension programs … Dr. Ayres has improved the quality of life in rural Indiana,” wrote a colleague who nominated her for the Certificate of Distinction. “Her efforts have led to increased personal and professional networks of change agents with the skills and understanding of how individuals, groups and institutions change and strengthen.”

The 1973 Purdue graduate earned a master’s degree in regional planning from Cornell University in 1975. She came back to Purdue in 1977 as a research associate and Extension specialist. After earning a Ph.D. in 1983, she joined the Agricultural Economics faculty as an assistant professor. She was promoted to associate professor in 1989 and became a full professor in 1995.

In the 1990s, she spent six years as assistant director of Purdue Extension, led the Community Development Program, and established the Purdue Land Use Team — one of the first collaborative efforts between campus specialists and field educators — and the Leadership Development Team. From 2003 to 2008, she was a senior fellow with the North Central Regional Center for Rural Development as a 25 percent appointment. She produced the Foundations of Practice, which became one of the early online courses in community development. It led to the USDA/Rural Development’s community development online course.

Extension educators and specialists have long benefited from Dr. Ayres’ focus on professional development. Her workshops at state park lodges around the state provided educational opportunities to learn about personal, interpersonal, group, and community leadership methods of engagement, forming “the foundation of Extension teams and collaborative efforts among staff to this day,” a nominator wrote. “The workshops led to many county leadership academics and youth programs which remain today.”

Her off-campus accomplishments are considerable, and College of Agriculture undergraduates can attest to her on-campus impact. Those who took her “Leadership and Controversial Issues in Agriculture” class saw and heard her facilitate group discussions about sources of conflict, power, influence, and privilege. She also led the effort to establish and revise the College’s Leadership Development Certificate Program, which earned the Outstanding Program Award from the Association of Leadership Educators.

Carroll County has been home for Dr. Ayres and her husband, Dr. Lynn Corson, since 1986. They restored a historic farm on the edge of Delphi. Janet led the Carroll County at the Crossroads efforts in 2004 and 2009, and co-created Carroll County Focus on the Future, Leadership Carroll County, and the Heritage Tourism group. She served on the Community Foundation board and is a member of the Land Use and Zoning Committee, Wabash & Erie Canal Association, Carroll County Historical Society, Delphi Preservation Society, the county Chamber of Commerce, and the Carroll County Ag Association.

“Janet’s passion for community development, combined with her tireless commitment to develop and deliver programs and work with community leaders and groups, led to increased quality of life for individuals and communities throughout rural Indiana and beyond,” a nominator said.

“She has a passion and an innate ability to relate to and inspire others,” wrote another nominator.

A sampling of Janet Ayres’ awards and achievements:

• Charles Carroll Award, Carroll County Chamber of Commerce, 2011

• Dean’s Team Award for CAFO study, co-recipient, Purdue College of Agriculture, 2010

• Carroll County Agriculture Hall of Fame, Carroll County Agriculture Association, 2010

• Award of Appreciation, Rural Business Cooperative Services, USDA/Rural 
Development, 2009

• Team Award for CAFO team, co-recipient, Purdue Extension Specialist Association, 2009

• Friend of Conservation Award, National Association of Conservation Districts, 2008

• State Senior Faculty Continued Service Award, Epsilon Sigma Phi, 2007

• Distinguished Service Award, Community Development Society, 2006

• Leadership Carroll County Recognition Award, Carroll County, 2006

• Frederick L. Hovde Award of Excellence in Educational Service to Rural People of 
Indiana, 1998

• Medal of Commemoration, Agricultural University of Krakow, Poland, 1996


David Petritz is a native of Rockford, Illinois. He actively participated in 4-H in Winnebago County and in FFA at Stillman Valley High School. He earned his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in agricultural economics from the University of Illinois.

After earning his Ph.D. in 1972, Dr. Petritz joined Purdue’s Department of Agricultural Economics as an Assistant Professor, and in 1982 he became the Assistant Head for Extension in Agricultural Economics. His areas of research and Extension were in the economics of beef and sheep, forage production and marketing, and in agricultural market analysis and outlook. Early in his career, he served as local arrangements chairperson for the national meetings of the American Agricultural Economics Association held at Purdue University. Through his Extension programming, Petritz was largely responsible for bringing regional and national recognition to Purdue's research programs on large hay bales and grazing systems. One of Dave's strengths was his strong commitment to seeking solutions for any problem. He worked on several programs to help farm families deal with difficult financial times, including the FARM project, which focused on financial decision-making tools for farmers. He also coordinated the 1988 drought response effort that included a toll-free hotline and extensive news media coverage.

In 1989 Petritz was named Assistant Director of Purdue Extension and Agricultural and Natural Resources Program Leader, a position he held until 1999, when he was appointed as the sixth Director of the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service. In 2002, he was also named the Associate Vice Provost for Engagement, and in 2004 he was appointed interim department head for 4-H Youth Development. He retired on June 30, 2007 after 35 years of service to Purdue.

As an Extension specialist Petritz was regularly in leadership roles at the county level addressing issues of farm management and market outlook. Throughout the changes in his position, his commitment to county level Extension programming did not change. One colleague described this dedication that Petritz demonstrated in his role as Assistant Director of Extension, writing in his letter of recommendation, “…Purdue’s relationship with counties blossomed under Dave’s leadership.”

As Purdue Extension Director, Petritz was effective in addressing the needs of farm families by combining the efforts of the Colleges of Agriculture and Consumer and Family Sciences and the School of Veterinary Medicine. He assisted staff members in various departments of these colleges to identify, develop, and implement educational programming. His vision created issue based teams for critical land use education with the Land Use Team and entrepreneurship with the New Ventures Team. He also worked to establish Learning Centers as part of the university engagement partnership with local communities. He was also a pioneer in fostering partnerships across state lines, working with both the University of Illinois and The Ohio State University to solve common problems. A specific outcome of the relationship between Purdue and The Ohio State University, which Petrtitz led in 2004, was the integration of Purdue Agriculture specialists into the programming of the Farm Science Review (FSR), one of the largest agricultural expositions in the Midwest.

In his role as Associate Vice Provost for Engagement, Petritz was responsible for helping the entire university become engaged in finding solutions to the problems facing Indiana communities. He was tasked with the design and implementation of a community visitation program for Purdue President Martin Jischke. Of this program, Jischke said, “The program was hugely successful and not only highlighted Extension but connected the broader university to the needs of communities all around Indiana. Dave was absolutely central to the success of this program, and I believe it could not have been done without him.”

Petritz has received many honors, but some stand out as career capstones. In 2011, the Farm Science Review Hall Of Fame inducted Petritz into its 22nd class. And in 2007, Epsilon Sigma Phi, the national organization of Extension professionals, awarded him its Distinguished Service Ruby recognition, which is the organization's most prestigious honor designed to recognize truly outstanding thinking, performance, and leadership in Extension by individuals who have made highly significant contributions at all levels of Extension programming over a lifetime career. Upon his retirement, Purdue Agriculture established an endowment in his honor that pays for educational and professional development opportunities for Extension educators and staff members throughout Indiana because, for Petritz, his leadership legacy was always about taking care of his Extension family.


Donald E. Orr, Jr. is a native of Tipton, Indiana, where he grew up raising and showing hogs. He graduated from Purdue University in 1967 with a B.S. in animal science. He earned his M.S. in animal husbandry from Penn State University in 1969, and a Ph.D. in animal husbandry/institute of nutrition from Michigan State University in 1975. He and his wife Pam currently live in Nobleville, Indiana, and have grain farms in two western Indiana counties.

While at Penn State from 1967 until 1969, Orr worked as a Research Assistant in the Animal Science Department, and from 1974 until 1975, he worked for Central Soya Co. in Decatur, Indiana as a Swine Research Specialist. After receiving his Ph.D. in 1975, Orr began teaching in the Animal Science Department at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas. He was both Assistant and Associate Professor, and Director of the Swine Research Center, all while working as a Swine Consultant in Europe and Asia, a position he held beginning in 1977 until 1984, when he began his career with JBS United. Orr was the first Ph.D. nutritionist at JBS, using research and development to drive swine nutrition innovation, providing effective products and building business models to facilitate producer decisions. With his leadership, the company has built a team experienced in the research of both swine and poultry, and today, 45 animal science research and technical employees use the company’s four research farms to work to meet the global needs of the company. Over the course of 29 years, he has helped reinvent JBS from a small feed company in three Midwestern states to a livestock nutrition technology-based company with a U.S. and global footprint, with 14-fold revenue growth, up from its $40 million when Orr started in 1984. Orr was a distinguished leader within his company, as well as in the swine and feed industries, gaining additional credibility through his experience as a Yorkshire and Landrace swine breeder for the Orr Family Farm Operation from 1969 until 1994.

Orr currently sits on the Board of Directors of JBS United, a position he has held since he began in 1984. From 1997 until 2015 he served as its President, from 1997 until 2007 he was the General Manager of the Nutrition Division, and from 1984 until 1997, Orr served as the Vice President of Nutrition and Development. In 1999, he became the founder of three China joint venture companies, of which he currently sits on the Board of Directors.

Orr's leadership extends to the broader agriculture industry as well. He has served on the Board of Directors of Maple Leaf Farms since 2010. From 1999 until 2002, he was a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council in the Purdue College of Agriculture. He has been a Charter Diplomate for the American College of Animal Nutrition since 1995, and has served on the Executive Steering Committee of the Indiana Food and Agriculture Innovation Initiative since 2013. Orr served on the Board of Directors and the Foundation Board of the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS), and served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors, and on the Executive Committee as the Chairman-Elect and Past Chairman of the American Feed Industry.

His community service record is extensive. Orr has served on the Board of Directors of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce since 2007, and is currently serving a three-year term on the Hamilton County Extension Board. He was the President of the Alpha Gamma Rho (Delta Chapter) Alumni Corporation at Purdue from 1997 until 1999, and is a current member of the Rural Areas/Small Town Commission for Thriving Communities. Additionally, he is a founding member of the Executive Steering Committee of AgriNovus Indiana.

Orr has earned multiple awards and honors for his contributions. In 1982 he received the Distinguished Hoosier Award, presented by Indiana Gov. Robert Orr. In 1999 he was selected as a Purdue Old Master, and also in 1999 he was recognized as a Distinguished Agriculture Alumnus by the Purdue College of Agriculture. Orr received the Brothers of the Century National Award from the Alpha Gamma Rho Fraternity in 2004, and in 2006, he was recognized as a Distinguished Animal Science Alumnus from Penn State University. Orr was selected to address the Midwest Swine Nutrition Conference as the keynote speaker in 2006. In 2008, he was recognized by Penn State University as an Outstanding Alumnus. In 2014, he was named a Fellow of the American Society of Animal Science. The Purdue Animal Sciences Department named him as a Book Harmon Leadership Fellow, also in 2014. In 2015, Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann recognized his career achievements with the AgriVision Award.


Craig Newman is a native of Veedersburg, Indiana, where he was raised on a corn, soybean and hog farm. He graduated from Purdue in 1971 with a B.S. in agricultural business management. After graduation, Newman began his career with Procter and Gamble, where he worked as a field sales representative in the health and beauty market, and eventually was promoted to District Sales Representative, and then to Unit Sales Manager. After nearly eight years in that role, he changed careers, taking a position at Akin Seed Company in southern Illinois in 1979 as the operations manager. That same year, Akin Seed began selling under the AgriGold brand name. Newman just recently retired as the President and CEO of AgReliant Genetics, parent company of the AgriGold brand.

When he first began working for Akin Seed as general manager, Newman was instrumental in the development and implementation of the new AgriGold brand. In the mid-1990s, Newman also became the general manager of Callahan Seeds when it was purchased by Group Limagrain of Chappes, France. In 2000, he became the Vice President of Sales and Marketing for AgReliant Genetics, which was a joint venture formed by Group Limagrain, and KWS, a German company. Both companies recognized the need for a strong leadership foundation in order for AgReliant to become successful, and Newman became a part of that foundation as a leader, and as an industry professional. Today, AgReliant ranks as the third largest corn seed company in North America. Over the past thirteen years, its eight seed brands have cumulatively grown their sales volume by over 300 percent, with almost 7% market share in North America, in part due to Newman’s leadership and vision. He is described by one of his colleagues as "a tireless supporter of expanding the role of technology and innovation in field crop agriculture, worldwide.”

Newman's participation in industry organizations is as impressive as his professional success. He served as the President of the Illinois Seed Dealers Association in 1990 and 1991. For the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA), he has served on the Executive Committee and the Board of Directors. Newman has held positions as ASTA Second Vice Chair and Central Region Vice President. Additionally, he has served on multiple committees and divisions within ASTA, including Seed Advocate, Corn and Sorghum Seed Division Member, Soybean Seed Division Member, Membership Committee Past Chair, International Executive Committee Member, Legislative and Legal Concerns Committee Member, Management Skills Committee Member, and Future Seed Executives Mentor. In 2013, he was elected Chairman of the ASTA Board of Directors. Through his work with the ASTA Board of Directors, he implemented a strategic plan developed over two years by ASTA membership, with the key focuses including strengthening intellectual property rights, expanding seed producers’ intellectual business opportunities and working to make ASTA a high-value resource for the seed industry. As chairman, Newman was instrumental in bringing the ASTA National Conference to Indianapolis. A colleague writes, “Hosting the top minds and most influential executives in the seed industry is an honor Indiana can directly attribute to Craig Newman’s leadership.”

Newman’s dedication to the agriculture industry extends to the investment of tomorrow’s agriculturalists, researchers and leaders. He has been an influential mentor for many young professionals and college students interested in careers in the seed business. He was also influential in the development of the AgReliant Genetics Graduate Student Endowment. Totaling $1 million, this endowment was created to provide funding for graduate students conducting research in plant breeding, soil science, genetics, and other agronomic areas of study.

Outside of the seed industry, Newman is a member of the Board of Directors for Advanced Microelectronics, and the Board of Directors of the Old National Bank. He serves on the Parish Council of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Mt. Carmel, Illinois, where he also works to works to raise funds for philanthropies and educational programs, causes very important to the Newman family.

In 2015 Newman was named a Distinguished Agriculture Alumnus by the Purdue College of Agriculture.


Larry Nees is a native of Poland, IN and graduated from Purdue University in 1975 with a B.S. in turf management. After graduation, he began working in the Office of the Indiana State Chemist where he has spent his entire career, now serving as Indiana State Seed Commissioner. He has a long record of state and national industry leadership and volunteer organizational involvement for which he has received numerous awards.

In the Office of the Indiana State Chemist, Nees began as a state seed inspector and worked in the field for one year. Over the next two years, he served as the assistant in the seed commissioner’s office. Since 1978, he has been in charge of administering the seed law enforcement program and has been director of the State Seed Testing Laboratory. In this position Nees is an advocate for consumers, which includes farmers and homeowners, protecting consumer interests by assuring that high quality seed, correctly labeled seed is sold in Indiana. One colleague wrote of Nees, “He has stood the test of time because he is efficient, effective, and he is fair.” These are some of the qualities that have led to his success, and gained him the respect of his industry colleagues. In fact, he has been a source of counsel to his peers across the country as they administer seed programs in their respective states.

Although he advocates for the consumer, Nees has built a strong rapport with seed companies as being fair in upholding the seed law in the state of Indiana. He understands both sides of the regulatory and commercial relationship, and is known for being open and understanding with the goal of coming to mutually rewarding solutions, according to a colleague. A seed company representative who has worked extensively with Nees praised these traits, “[He] always made me feel like he was working for us and not just laying down the law.” Nees has gone above and beyond the duties of his role, working to provide education on the law, so that people are fully aware of it and understand it. He has championed needed changes to the Indiana State Seed Law through the Indiana General Assembly to keep pace with an evolving Indiana seed industry. The industry he serves is vital to Indiana's agriculture economy, as Indiana is currently a net exporter of seed, its companies producing far more high quality seed than can be sown on Indiana acres.

Nees has assumed numerous leadership roles in the industry, and is heavily involved in multiple industry organizations at the state and national levels. He served the Association of American Seed Control Officials as President two different times; was both 2nd Vice President and 1st Vice President; and was Secretary for seventeen years. He participated in numerous committees, and sat on the Board of Directors. Currently, he acts as elder statesman for the association due to his tenure and experience as a seed control official. Additionally, he is on the Board of Directors for both the Seed Testing Research Foundation and the Association of Official Seed Analysts. For the Indiana Seed Trade Association, he serves as Ex-Officio Director and is a part of the Seed Testing and Labeling Committee. For the Indiana Crop Improvement Association, he is a valued member of the Seed Lab Advisory Committee. Nees is a co-contributor to the AASCO Handbook on Seed Sampling, which is used across the U.S. by seed companies and seed control officials. Additionally, he is the author of Indiana Seedsman’s Handbook, A Guide for Distribution and Labeling of Seed in Indiana. Because of Nees’ expertise, he has had much influence on the Recommended Uniform State Seed Law (RUSSL), and has served as a moderator and a speaker at the Illinois/Indiana Seed Conditioning Workshop and the Corn Belt Seed Conference.

Nees has served since 2000 as a director of the Purdue Agricultural Alumni Association. For many years prior to that, he had served on the program committee for the Purdue Ag Fish Fry. Since 2012, he has served as treasurer of the board of directors.

His passion for improvement extends to community organizations as well. Nees is a past chair and a current member of the West Lafayette First United Methodist Church finance committee, and served on the building committee when the church relocated from the Village to a site west of town. He was a member of the United Way allocation committee from 1994 until 1997, and served on the task force to evaluate school facilities in the Lafayette School Corporation.

Nees has received numerous honors, including several capstone awards from the organizations he has served. In 1991, the Indiana Crop Improvement Association awarded him its highest honor, the Crop and Soils Merit Award. He also received the Honorary Member Award from the Indiana Seed Trade Association in 2005, and in 2015 he was honored with the Distinguished Service Award from the Association of American Seed Control Officials.


John T. Costello is a native of Stratford, Connecticut. He graduated from Purdue University in 1952 with a B.S. in forestry, after serving his country in the U.S. Navy from 1945 until 1946 as an aircraft carrier radar operator on the USS Philippine Sea near the end of World War II. After graduating, he began a career in the forestry industry that lasted until his retirement. He is described as being the common thread in the executive leadership of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources for more than three decades. In addition to the positions he held in his professional life, Costello has also been involved in multiple organizations dedicated to serving Indiana’s natural resources and wildlife industry.

From the time he began his career until his retirement, Costello showed dedication in his stewardship of public lands and natural resources in both Illinois and Indiana. In 1962, he left his position as Regional/Farm Forester to become the District Forester for the Illinois Department of Conservation (now the Illinois Department of Natural Resources). He held this title until 1987 when, after fourteen years of service to the forestry industry of Illinois, he became the Assistant State Forester for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). In 1969, he was promoted to State Forester, and in 1972 he was named as IDNR Deputy Director, a position he held for twenty-nine years until his retirement in 2000. As deputy director, Costello’s realm of leadership was expanded to include state parks, museums, reservoirs, recreation, acquisition, preservation, reclamation, and more. Not only is he well-respected and esteemed as an accomplished forester, but also as a leader whose ability to listen and work with people allowed him to remain steadfast in navigating IDNR policy, even through the most conflicting of interests and challenging of topics. It is this ability that led him to be successful as an IDNR executive liaison for both the IDNR Advisory Board, and the Natural Resource Commission. One nominee describes Costello, “He was able to work with everyone regardless of political or ideological viewpoint to effect necessary changes that were beneficial to the state’s resources.” He was instrumental in the passage of the Property Manager’s Act, which professionalized land management in Indiana. Additionally, he played a crucial role that led to the successful passage of the Indiana Trails Act and the Indiana Natural and Recreation Streams Act. Since their implementation, both pieces of legislation have resulted in an improved quality of life for Hoosiers and visitors.

It is truly Costello’s talent as a communicator and problem-solver to which most nominators accredit his success. When describing his attributes as a professional, his colleagues mention the calm and patient manner with which he deals with people and situations on a daily basis, and the fortitude that earned him the respect of everyone he worked with. One nominator, who describes Costello as a mentor, says, “His guidance, patience, and support are an important reason why the IDNR that exists today is so successful.” His ability to see the bigger picture allowed him to work with individuals of different mindsets. As deputy director, he worked under six governors and seven IDNR directors.

Costello's leadership extends to professional and community organizations as well. He was a member of the National Association of State Foresters, the Society of American Foresters, the Illinois Technical Forestry Association and Xi Sigma Pi, the international honor society for forestry and related sciences. During his time in Illinois, he was active in the Boy Scouts of America, serving as regional coordinator and training scout leaders and actively establishing new troops. In Indiana, he was instrumental in organizing the Hoosier Buffalo Riders, a roundtable of persons interested in conservation and natural resources that advised IDNR on how best to keep natural resources from disappearing, or going the way of the buffalo. The Buffalo Riders instituted an awards program to recognize those with achievements in natural resource conservation. Costello is extremely involved with in St. Susanna Catholic Church in Plainfield where he and his family attend. He is in leadership in the parish council, school board, and men’s club. He also coaches Catholic Youth Organization (CYO), and serves as a lay minister in the church. Regarding his professional and community service, one colleague wrote of Costello, “He has been and is an outstanding example of what Purdue graduates have done for the citizens of Indiana.”

Costello’s honors include twice receiving meritorious service trophy awards from the Boy Scouts of America for his work in southern Illinois. He has been named a Sagamore of the Wabash on four occasions, most recently by Governor Frank O'Bannon in 2000. Twice, he was officially cited by U.S. Senator Richard Lugar. In 2000 he was named Indiana Power and Light Company (IPALCO) Enterprises Environmental Steward of the Year.


Ralph Booker is a native of Plymouth, Indiana. He graduated from Purdue University in 1971 with a B.S. in agricultural economics, and later earned his M.S. of public administration in 1983 from Indiana University. He began his career as 4-H Extension Educator in 1973 in Parke County, a role he maintained until 1977 when he became County Extension Director in Brown County, Indiana. In 1988, Booker was named County Extension Director of Marshall County, Indiana, the position from which he retired in 2003. Since retiring from Purdue Extension, Booker has continued his community service as the Marshall County Plan Director and Zoning Administrator/Plymouth Plan Consultant. Booker served in the U.S. Army Reserves from 1972 through 1999, retiring as Lieutenant Colonel.

As a Purdue Extension educator, Booker was responsible for a considerable number of successful ventures that significantly benefitted the counties that he served. While in Brown County, he developed and administered the county budget, developed and conducted the county agriculture education program, and secured funds to start the first county park. Booker also developed the county’s fairgrounds, upgrading from a single outdoor livestock arena to a new livestock facility, 4-H and open class building, and a new Extension office. His contributions to Marshall County during his time as County Extension Director were particularly noteworthy. In 1990, he started the Ag Day Program for third grade students within the county, a model that is used by many counties across the state to educate elementary school students about agriculture and food production. Booker has also been instrumental in securing multiple grants, and utilizing them to improve the county as a whole. A National Science Foundation grant was secured to provide the first free internet access in Marshall County to over 800 clients. Additionally, he served on a committee that secured a $5M grant from the Lilly Foundation that was used by the Marshall County Community Foundation for a broad community initiative that started Crossroads Academy, a technical education center; Heart and Hands, a non-profit organization to teach English as a Second Language (ESL), and ultimately other classes serving the Latino community; and childcare training at Ancilla College, where he also taught a basic agriculture course. Booker supervised the coordination of Crossroads Academy, and hired and supervised its first director. This academy is a center dedicated to serving the residents of Marshall County, and hosts classes for high school and college students as well as adults for the Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE) designation, along with other computer applications. Booker managed all of this while also being responsible for supervising four Extension program areas, which include 4-H and Youth, Consumer and Family Sciences, Agriculture, and Leadership and Community Development. One nominator summarized his view of Booker in his letter of support, “Ralph is, in my view, the consummate professional in anything he undertakes.”

Booker has demonstrated a steadfast commitment to providing educational and training opportunities to every stakeholder group he has served. From teaching the Dairy Option Pilot Program for USDA and starting the Dairy Excel Management Course, to his class on QuickBooks at the Crossroads Academy, it is evident that he believes in the importance of agricultural education as well as technology, and is a strong advocate of lifelong learning.

After retiring from his career in Extension, from October 2004 to July 2005 Booker served as the Marshall County Public Health Coordinator. His responsibility in this position involved writing the Mass Prophylaxis Plan for the county, which is a plan to treat all healthy individuals in the event of a massive disease or bio-terrorism outbreak. From 2004 until 2012, he served two terms as a Marshall County Councilman. Booker currently holds a position as Marshall County Plan Director and Zoning Administrator/Plymouth Plan Consultant, and played a crucial role in completing the county comprehensive plan and updating county zoning ordinances. His expertise has even led him outside of the county to assist other communities with updating their comprehensive plans and ordinances, answering questions and advising them on zoning. Booker continues his commitment to technology and education by serving on the Marshall County Technology Squared committee, which is an agriculture and technology economic development initiative that promotes job creation. He also chairs the Marshall County Life Long Learning network.

Booker has served in many state and national leadership roles. He served as the President of the Agriculture Section of the Indiana Extension Agents Association (IEAA) from 1992-1993, and as IEAA President from 1996-1997. In 2000, Booker served as Agricultural Economics National Chair of the National Association of County Agricultural Agents. He served as the Plymouth Rotary Club President from 1994-1995, and is currently still involved in the local club, representing agriculture interests.

Booker has been recognized with numerous awards, including the IEAA Innovator Award in 1996, the National Association of County Agricultural Agents Distinguished Service Award in 2000, and the Beck's Hybrids Beyond the Fence Award for Public Official of the Year in 2007.

Tom Springstun is a native of Spencer County, Indiana. He graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in animal science in 1977, and earned his M.S. in extension education in 1981. He began a career with the Purdue Cooperative Extension Service in the fall of 1977, a career that would last 35 years until he retired in 2012. During his tenure, he served Clark, Greene, and Scott counties. At the time of his retirement, he was the County Extension Director in Floyd County where he served as an educator for both Ag and Natural Resources and Economic and Community Development. From 2003 until his retirement, he also served as the Area 2 Aquaculture Specialist. Springstun led many innovative programs during his career and was continually participating in educational development programs that expanded his areas of expertise. He has numerous achievements in the area of recycling, resulting mostly from the necessity his community faced in the late 1990s. In 1997, the Scott County Commissioners came to Springstun to enlist his help in creating a local Trash Force. The county landfill had become full, and the county had to contract with a waste hauler to dispose of residents' waste. The cost of disposal was increasing each year, and the state was about to require a reduction in such things as yard waste being discarded in the regular trash stream. Springstun enlisted the help of five other community leaders, and the group came up with ideas that he presented to the county commissioners. The commissioners approved their ideas, and Springstun led the implementation of the project. A free countywide recycling program was created. Outside the Purdue Extension- Scott County Office, Springstun constructed various demonstration composting structures. He conducted numerous instructional programs on proper composting and recycling methods. He encouraged enough people to participate in recycling that it became a profitable business for a contractor. The county hired a firm to operate the same four drop-off locations each week, plus every day at the county transfer station. The net result was a savings for the county, and more responsible management of waste by residents. For his efforts to establish the recycling program, Springstun received the Governor's Recycling Task Force recognition for Outstanding Recycling Program in 1999. Springstun went on to develop a recycling curriculum called "Saving the Environment Saves $$;'which teaches the importance of recycling and provides specialized information about how to prepare bottles, cans, and other items for recycling. He also coordinated spring and fall recycling events for harder-to-recycle items such as freoncontaining appliances, tires, car batteries, and mercury. Another area in which Springstun has distinguished himself is aquaculture education. Aquaculture production holds promising opportunities to be profitable primary or secondary ventures for farmers, opportunities that might be especially beneficial to those with marginal croplands or with small land holdings. Springstun became a leader in promoting aquaculture to his clients and took the initiative to learn as much as he could about the best practices of the industry. Some of the significant aquaculture programs in which he participated include the Extension Educators Aquaculture Team training in Ohio in 2005, the Growing Power training in Wisconsin in 2006, an IP video training from Missouri on Barn Conversions in 2007, the Financing Aquaculture Workshop in Indianapolis in 2008, and a Recirculating Aquaculture Short Course in Virginia in 2008. Springstun applied for and received a $1,000 scholarship from the National Association of County Agricultural Agents Association (NACAA) in 2009, which he used to pay for the graduate level on line course, Principles of Aquaculture, from Kentucky State University under the instruction of Dr. James Tidwell. Springstun was a member of the Purdue Aquatic Sustainable Seafood (PASS) team that presented three webinars and a two-day workshop in 2011 for clients interested in aquaculture ventures, specifically how to take the next step into processing. Springstun developed and taught the Fresh Water Prawn Workshop in 2005, 2006, and 2007 in Scottsburg, Martinsville, and Sellersburg, and a 2006 Beginning Aquaculture Workshop in Scottsburg. For more than six years he assisted a Floyd County farmer in establishing a system to raise fresh water shrimp, a venture that expanded after three years to also include raising tilapia. Wherever he has served, Springstun has forged partnerships that improved and strengthened the county. In Scott County, he worked with local government to implement the first Leadership Scott County program. Also in Scott County, Springstun helped to develop the county government's website into a more robust, user-friendly platform, and was a key player in establishing the YMCA and Lifelong Learning Center. In Floyd County, he assisted with the Southern Indiana Botanical Society (SIBS) and directed the Sunnyside Master Gardener program. He contributed to the Floyd County Program of Excellence, "Eat Your Way to Better Health" and conducted professional horticulture seminars at Indiana University Southeast in New Albany. In 2010 he was recognized for his economic development work presenting a series of free workshops to help improve the productivity of Floyd County companies. Springstun has received numerous awards for his professional achievements including National Association of County Agricultural Agents Association (NACAA) Achievement Award (1986), Indiana Extension Educators Association (IEEA) Team Award (1993), IEEA Ag Senior Award (1994), IEEA Ag Innovator Award (1997), Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) National Conservation Committee recognition for Outstanding Achievement (1998), Governor's Recycling Task Force's Outstanding Recycling Program (1999), IEEA Leadership and Community Development Career Award (2003), IEEA Leadership and Community Development Innovator Award (2004), NACAA Distinguished Service Award (2005), IEEA Ag and Natural Resources Career Award (2006), and IEEA Economic and Community Development Individual Award (2010). In 1996, Spring stun was chosen as one of five Scott County citizens to participate in the relay of the Olympic Torch as it passed through the county on its way to Atlanta, Georgia, for the 1996 Summer Olympic Games.
2015Micheal AShuterFranktonIN
Mike Shuter is a native of Madison County, Indiana, and graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in agricultural economics in 1973. Growing up on the family farm, he was active in 4-H. After graduating from Purdue, he returned home to farm with his parents, and today, with his wife Susan and sons Brain and Patrick, operates Shuter Sunset Farms, Inc., a fourth-generation family farm. Shuter's operation focuses on the traditional crops of corn, soybeans, cattle, and hogs, but brings innovative approaches to each enterprise. Shuter was one of the first in his area to adopt conservation tillage practices, going to no-till corn in 1983, partially in response to high energy prices. Before that, the Shuters were chisel plowing both corn and soybean ground. In 1988, he began no-till drilling soybeans, and in 2003, began strip-tilling corn. In 2006, he switched to a corn-cornsoybean rotation from a com-soybean rotation to take advantage of the projected increase in the local demand for corn with the construction of bioenergy plants. In 2009, Shuter changed from drilling beans to split row planting. Since 1993, Shuter has utilized variable planting rates and variable rate applications of phosphorus, potassium, and lime. Crop inputs are varied according to management zones established using yield maps, soil survey information, and information from Veris soil electrical conductivity mapping. This sitespecific approach is organized into a database utilizing MapShots technology, which aids in the analysis. Shuter's 20-year adherence to sound conservation practices has steadily increased the organic matter content of his soils, and soil erosion and excessive water runoff during heavy rains have been reduced due to increased cover. Value-added enterprises are also integral to Shuter's operation. Livestock have long added value to the farm's grain crops. Raising specialty crops of popcorn for Weaver Popcorn and seed soybeans for Beck's Hybrids are key to Shuter's business plan. Additionally, he is a Beck's seed dealer. The Red Poll cattle have been a family tradition since 1941 when Mike's farther Mervin and grandfather Leslie bought their first Red Poll heifer in to raise and show as a 4-H project. Maximum value is captured by marketing animals as replacements, club calves, and through a freezer beef business. Meat is marketed through Indiana Farm Fresh Beef, a certified freezer beef marketing program sponsored by the Indiana Beef Cattle Association and through Heartland Premium Aged Beef, LLC, a producer co-op that markets lndianaraised beef to grocery stores and restaurants. An 8,000- head per year contract hog finishing operation rounds out the farm's enterprises. Innovative finishing houses have computer-controlled ventilation and take pigs from 21 days to market weight in the same building, eliminating the shrinkage that can occur with moving to a new building. Shuter has an extensive record of ag industry service at the state and national levels. He has served in many roles for the Indiana Corn Growers Association and Indiana Corn Marketing Council, including president. He was very involved with the corn referendum that resulted in the Indiana Corn Check-off and, ultimately, the Indiana Corn Marketing Council. As president of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council, he served on the board of directors of the Indiana Grain Indemnity Board. Shuter serves on the Board of Directors of the Eastern Indiana Livestock Breeders Association and has served as the organization's president. He is also a board member of the Indiana Red Poll Breeders Association and of the Beef Ventures Group, the group that funded the research that led to the Heartland Premium Aged Beef marketing program for Indiana beef producers. Shuter served multiple terms on the Board of Directors of the National Corn Growers Association and on its Public Policy Action Team, traveling to Washington, D.C., to work with legislators to develop policy and provide testimony to Congress on farm issues. Shuter frequently opens his farm to visitors, from local school groups to national news reporters and international trade delegations. He has been a host for the Purdue Farm Management Tour, and has been a presenter at Purdue's Top Farmer Crop Workshop. Through numerous media interviews, letters to the editor, and speaking engagements throughout the state, he shares the important role corn and livestock farmers have in our economy and to national security. In his community, Shuter is active in the Frankton Lions Club, where he has served in many roles, including president. He has served on the board of directors of the Madison County 4-H Fair Board and for 25 years has been a volunteer leader of the Tractor Maintenance Club. An active member of the First United Methodist Church of Frankton Shuter has served on the Pastor Parish Committee and the Building' Committee where he helped organize a church project to convert an abandoned factory building into a community center. Shuter's honors include being named a Master Farmer by Indiana Prairie Farmer and having his farm selected to host the Purdue Farm Management Tour. He was named Madison County's Outstanding Conservation Farmer in 1995. The farm's Red Poll cattle have won awards for many years, most recently the 2002 and 2011 National Champion Bulls, the 2005 and 2006 National Reserve Champion Bulls, and the 2008 and 2011 National Reserve Champion Females.
2015ScottAllenJamiesonArlington HeightsIL
Scott Jamieson is a native of Gary, Indiana, and graduated in 1984 from Purdue University with a B.S. in forestry, majoring in urban forestry. He earned an M.S. in forestry from Michigan State University in 1985 and an M.B.A. from DePaul University in 1994. Jamieson began his career as a field arborist at Hendricksen, the Care ofTrees, worked his way through the ranks, and by age 35, after only nine years, became president and CEO of one of the nation's largest tree care companies. As president and CEO of the newly named The Care ofTrees, he was responsible for 26 offices in seven states with more than 500 employees. He spent nearly 20 years at the company, the last 10 as president and CEO. He led many successful and innovative initiatives, growing the company into the second largest commercial and residential tree preservation firm in the world at the time. He is currently a vice president at BartlettTree Experts, responsible for corporate partnerships and national recruiting across 27 states for 100 offices, at a company with more than 1,500 employees and revenues exceeding $170 million. His recruiting strategy involves building robust alliances with university urban forestry and agriculture programs. He has been a guest instructor at Purdue, Michigan State, and Iowa State universities, and he is an Elmhurst College mentor. He has served on advisory boards for both the Michigan State and Purdue forestry departments, as well as the Purdue College of Agriculture Dean's Advisory Council. Jamieson is also the director of Bartlett Inventory Solutions (BIS), a technologically advanced system for conducting tree inventories and management plans for Bartlett clients across the United States using a proprietary mapping and inventory software program developed under his leadership. Jamieson has devoted his career and much of his extensive civic contributions to advancing the tree care profession, keeping arborists safe, protecting and enhancing the urban forest, and empowering others to be environmental stewards. His extensive record of professional service ranges from local to national organizations. In the Chicago region, he has literally changed the urban landscape through many targeted efforts to improve tree culture and care. He has served on the boards ofThe Morton Arboretum, Friends of the Parks, Midwest Ecological Landscape Alliance (chair and vice-chair of board), Chicago Environmental Fund (founding board member), Openlands urban conservation group (founding Steering Committee Member and tree care instructor for the TreeKeepers program, which has trained 1,500 volunteers to spot problems with urban trees), and the Greater North Michigan Avenue Association (now the Magnificent Mile Association; 20 years of service on the Beautification Committee, including the chairmanship). Jamieson has also served on Mayor Richard M. Daley's Landscape Committee where he chaired the Landscape Ordinance Review Committee; has been a tree care instructor for Green corps Chicago; and has been a member of the Operations and Maintenance Working Group for the Chicago Trees Initiative. At the state level, Jamieson has served the Illinois Arborist Association (Finance Chair), the Illinois State Urban Forestry Council (Board of Directors), and the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association (Public Relations, Program and College Liaison committees). His national memberships include the American Society of Consulting Arborists, International Society of Arboriculture, and the American Society of Landscape Architects. He has served on the national boards of directors for the Alliance for Community Trees, the National Safety Council, and Companies That Care. Additionally, he has extensive service to the Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA) where, as chairman, he led the development of a TCIA company certification program focused on safety records and other business operations and practices. Currently, he is a board member and president-elect of PLANET, the Professional Landcare Network, the national lawn and landscape association, where he is leading safety initiatives for the 4,000 corporate members and is helping to rebrand the association and strengthen its governance and committee structures. Jamieson has made a significant impact on his local community as well. Using his service on the board ofthe National Safety Council,he helped the Village of Arlington Heights, Illinois, become a Safe Community, a designation that is a partnership between the National Safety Council and World Health Organization. He has taught a variety of classes at both The Morton Arboretum and Chicago Botanic Garden, introducing local residents and professionals to state-of-the-art tree care and landscape practices. Jamieson volunteered for many years to conduct tree plantings and environmental education classes at Our Lady of the Wayside Elementary School, and also served as a volunteer coach for the Arlington Heights Park District's youth baseball and basketball leagues. Under Jamieson's leadership, The Care ofTrees was recognized with the Arthur Andersen Best Practices Award for motivating and retaining employees. It was also recognized for four consecutive years by the Center for Companies That Care, the only green industry company to be so acknowledged at the time. Jamieson has been honored by Lawn and Landscape magazine with its Leadership Award and by the Midwest Ecological Landscape Association with its Polaris Leadership Award. In 2004, he was named a Distinguished Agriculture Alumnus by the Purdue College of Agriculture.
2015MaxWEvansOverland ParkKS
Max Evans is a native of Delaware County, Indiana, and graduated from Purdue with a B.S. in animal science in 1957. At Purdue, his activities included Livestock Judging Team, Hoof & Horn Club, Collegiate 4-H Club, Folk a Whirlers (called square dances), Wesley Foundation, and Junior Board of Student Union. He was a member of Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity and a walk-on member of the football team. From 1962 to 1964 Evans took courses at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, toward an M.B.A., but was transferred to southwestern Indiana prior to completion of degree requirements. Upon graduation from Purdue, Evans began a distinguished career in farm management and consulting that would last more than 55 years, until he retired in 2013. From 1957 to 1966 he worked for Opekasit, Inc., first in Lebanon, Ohio, then in Washington, Indiana. From 1966 to 1968 he worked for Irwin Union Bank & Trust Company in Hope and Columbus, Indiana. In 1969, he moved to the Northern Trust Company Bank in Chicago, where he was the operational manager of the Farm Real Estate Department and later promoted to Assistant Secretary. In 1972, Evans moved to Memphis, Tennessee, with Nortrust Farm Management, a wholly owned subsidiary of Northern Trust. At Nortrust he was the office manager and the farm manager of the Deerbrook Company, a 10,000- acre crop and livestock operation in east-central Mississippi. Evans grew the company to 12,000 acres, and he increased the sizes of the hog operation (33% to 18,000 head/year) and the beef cow herd (from 50 to 2500). To achieve efficiencies and improvements at Deerbrook, Evans worked with multiple faculty at Purdue including Howard Doster, Hobe Jones, and agricultural engineering faculty. He also worked with Dr. Bud Harmon at Purina and faculty at Mississippi State University. In 1976, Evans returned to Chicago and assumed the additional responsibility of managing Norris Farms, a 12,000-acre hired labor farm with 9,500 acres of row crops in the Illinois River bottom with a 1,500-head cattle feeding operation. Again, Evans worked with Doster at Purdue to analyze data and design efficient cropping systems for the farm. While at Nortrust, Evans consulted for several notable farms and projects including Shelburne Farms in Burlington, Vermont, on a study to verify the funding of an applied grant to the Rockefeller Foundation; Biltmore Farms in Ashville, North Carolina, on a management study on two large dairy production facilities; an agricultural project in Haiti to develop 100,000 acres of irrigated corn, soybean, and wheat plus a large hog operation; and an investigatory project in southwest Saudi Arabia. In 1981, Evans became Vice President and Head of the Farm Management Department for Union Central Bank & Trust, Des Moines, Iowa. In 1984, with two partners he founded Agri Partners Central, a Des Moines farm management, appraisal, and real estate brokerage firm, of which he would later became the majority stockholder. As CEO, Evans appraised loan collateral for the liquidators in charge as the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation took over failed banks during the farm crisis in Iowa and Missouri and was a part-time consultant appraiser from 1984-1986 for Farm Credit Capital Corporation (parent company to the Federal Land Bank and Production Credit). He served as a consulting appraiser in 26 states. In 1992, Evans sold Agri Partners Central to Farmers National Company (FNC). From 1992 to 2013, he worked for FNC as an independent contractor doing appraisals on a fee-sharing basis. During his career, Evans was a leader in numerous professional organizations including the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers (ASFMRA), national officer 2001-2004, president in 2003, president of ASFRMA Indiana Chapter 1970, president of ASFRMA Iowa Chapter 1993; and the American Society of Appraisers (ASA), regional governor 1997-2001, chairman of education committee 1992- 1996, president of ASA Iowa Chapter 1994. Evans was a key player in the consolidation of ASA & National Association of Independent Fee Appraisers (NAIFA) in 2000. In 1992, Evans worked on the farm management and appraisal team of a three-year USAID grant administered by Iowa State University in association with the Iowa Chapter of ASFMRA to assist the Czech Republic and Slovakia in the move from socialism to a market-driven society. In addition to six one-week trips to each country to teach appraisal and real estate sales, representatives from these countries made several trips to Iowa each year, hosted by Evans and his team. Evans is a Life Member of the Purdue Alumni Association and served on the Purdue Alumni Board of Directors representing region 13. He was a member of the diversity committee (2005-2006) and the finance committee (2006-2012). He was a founding member of the Purdue Alumni Club of Central Iowa and served on its board (2005-2008). Evans is currently a member of both the Purdue Alumni Club of Central Iowa and the Purdue Alumni Club of Kansas City. He was a member of the Des Moines Golf & Country Club from 1981 to 2012, and served on its tennis committee (1985-1990) and as an ex-officio member of the board of directors. Evans has a long record of service to the Methodist Church, holding numerous committee memberships, and has served as a choir member, lay leader, Sunday school teacher, and administrative board member for several congregations in Indiana, Ohio, and Iowa. Evans was elected to the College of Fellows of the American Society of Appraisers (FASA) in 2004, and received two Awards of Recognition from ASA for developing a Valuation of Agricultural Chattels course and for codeveloping an Agricultural Business Valuation course. In 2010 ASFMRA honored him with its D. Howard Doane Award, presented annually to a member or nonmember who has demonstrated such qualities and outstanding contributions in the field of agriculture with emphasis on farm management and rural appraisal. From 2000 to 2011 he annually received the Top Appraiser award from FNC. In 2012, received a Lifetime Professional Recognition award from FNC. 13
2015D. HowardDosterWaynesvilleOH
D. Howard Doster is a native of Warren County, Ohio. He graduated from The Ohio State University with a B.5., M.5., and Ph.D. in 1955, 1959, and 1968, respectively. Doster joined the Purdue Agricultural Economics faculty as an Extension Farm Management Specialist on January 1, 1968, just in time to help 40 other ag faculty start the Purdue Top Farmer Crop Workshop, a program he would go on to lead for more than 30 years. Doster says he will always remember the second Tuesday in March 1973. Without taking a breath, his department head said, "Congratulations, you have been promoted to Associate Professor, but you will never be promoted to Professor at Purdue. However, you can stay here and run the Top Farmer workshop, and work on your management information system:' Doster and his family are glad they stayed. His wife Barbara created a great career in the Purdue Krannert School of Management. After rising from a part-time, no promotion job to Director of Undergraduate Programs, she won multiple distinguished service awards, and still gives the opening motivation speech at each annual Doster Leadership Forum weekend in Indianapolis to the top 100 Krannert School students. Howard and Barbara's four children and their spouses earned 17 degrees, including seven from Purdue. One son is a Purdue Distinguished Agriculture Alumnus. Freed of the need to publish in academic journals, Doster says he "just did good things with and for students and farmers:' Leading the Top Farmer Crop Workshop, he helped develop the machinery and tillage budgets and initiated the idea of farmers using the workshop's linear program computer budget to test four kinds of changes: crop mix, machinery size, tillage system, and farm size. Doster coordinated 250 Top Farmer Workshops on three continents, helping 7,000 farmers interpret 25,000 farm budgets. "Test Before You Invest" is Doster's seven-minute machinery economics speech that highlights his hallmark principles: timeliness, use of big machinery, "test before you invest;' and associate with positive-thinking persons. He has given this speech some 900 times in eight countries. The speech was also used to help create three 27-minute movies sponsored by Allis-Chalmers, John Deere, and International Harvester. Recognizing the influence of farm magazine writers, Doster set a goal of helping to write a national or regional article each month. He cowrote extension and research articles with 43 university colleagues, including annual crop budgets and influential papers on land rent, tillage economics, and no-till long before it was generally accepted. In 1983, he created the term "site-specific farming" in a proceedings paper titled, "Big Ten Crop Farming" for the Purdue On-Farm Computer Conference. Now, he has a new site-specific paper, "Surprise Moment Management with a Plan:' Doster taught six classes at Purdue, including "How to Go Home and Start Farming with Dad:' He co-wrote three high school texts on entrepreneurship. He also created and coordinated 20 annual Farming Together Workshops, and coordinated the farm records program and the annual Indiana Farm ManagementTour. Doster was an undergraduate member of agricultural honorary Gamma Sigma Delta, and was the co-founder and president of the Purdue chapter. He was a member of Alpha Zeta at the Ohio State University (OSU) and served as faculty advisor to chapters at both OSU and Purdue. In 2006 he spearheaded organizing the union of OSU's Alpha Zeta fraternity with the university's new Farm House chapter. At Purdue, Doster was a senior faculty fellow at Shreve Hall and coached the 1983 Purdue women's softball team to its best-ever record. He was honored as a Kentucky Colonel for helping start the Kentucky Chapter of the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers (ASFMRA) while serving as secretary of the Indiana Chapter. He earned designations as Accredited Farm Manager and Accredited Agricultural Consultant from ASFMRA. He has been active in numerous professional organizations including the American Society of Agricultural Consultants (ASAC), where he was in the first class to earn the title Certified Agricultural Consultant (CAC). He is a longtime member and speaker for the American Agricultural Economics Association and the American Agricultural Engineering Association, and he has been a speaker and presented papers for the American Soil Conservation Society and the American Entomology Society. He served on the founding advisory committee forThe Executive Program for Agricultural Producers (TEPAP) and was the first membership chairman forThe Association of Agricultural Production Executives (AAPEX), the TEPAP alumni group. Doster has an extensive record of community service, having held all church offices, including presiding officer, at three churches in three cities during major building campaigns. He taught Sunday school for many years, and in 2013 wrote the 175th anniversary history of his present church. He is a member of five nearby historical societies and is writing a massive local history that includes the stories of many of his mostly Quaker ancestors. Doster is his family's recorder and is also writing the history for the 150th annual reunion of their descendants. Doster retired from Purdue in 2001 at age 67, but continued to coordinate the Top Farmer Workshop for another two years. Since retiring, he and Barbara have counseled multi-generation farm families in eight states. After coining the term "site-specific farming" 31 years ago, he has come full circle and is now finishing his whole entity, precision ag, monitoring/planning software. The programmer is committed to offering it free to high school students and their crop farming parents who help Doster start his proposed 4-H, and perhaps FFA, serious farm management program. Among his many honors and recognitions, Doster received the Purdue Extension Specialists Association (PUCESA) Career Award just before retiring. In 2004, he was honored with Indiana Prairie Farmer's Honorary Master Farmer Award. The American Agricultural Editors' Association gave him their 2005 Distinguished and Meritorious Service to American Agriculture Award. In his acceptance speech, Howard made one point: "Let's do what we can to revitalize land grants:' He still is.
Dan Arnholt is a native of Bartholomew County, Indiana, and graduated from Purdue University in 1968 with a B.S. in agricultural economics. After graduation, he began a career in the electric utility industry that would last until his retirement. He first worked for Public Service Indiana (later PSI Energy) for 22 years. He left PSI to become the General Manager and CEO of the Bartholomew County REMC, a position he held for 18 years until his retirement. In 1968, Arnholt and his wife Susan bought their first farm in Bartholomew County, and they continue to farm that land together today. Arnholt, along with Susan and their son Clint, is owner/operator of Sudan Farms, Inc. and Sudan Ag Lime Service. Arnholt has an extensive record of achievement and service to the rural electric utility industry. He wrote several farm energy papers published by the American Society of Agricultural Engineering (ASAE), including "Timer Switches for Low Temperature Grain Drying;"'lndiana Farm Electrification Council's Neutral to Earth Voltage Seminars;' "Computer Aided Wiring Instruction Program;' and "Technical Brief on Low Temperature Drying:' He is also the co-author of Farmer's Guide for Electrical Grain Drying. He has served as a member of the Governor's Task Force Committee on Indiana Agriculture; the Indiana Statewide Competition Task Force; the National Committee for Ag Mechanics; and several National Food and Energy Task Forces on Electrical Wiring Systems for Livestock Facilities, Livestock Ventilation, and Farm Energy Audits. Arnholt was a graduate of the first class of the Indiana Agriculture Leadership Program, a program of Agrllnstitute (then known as the Indiana Institute of Food, Agriculture and Nutrition). He has served on the Agrllnstitute board of directors since 1987. He was elected treasurer in 1993, a role in which he continues to serve. He served as chairman of Agrllnstitute in 2004-05. Arnholt's many service activities encompass roles in his community, his profession, and Purdue University. Arnholt and his son Clint have been leaders of the Bartholomew County 4-H Tractor Safety project since 1995. Purdue Agriculture Fish Fry· 2075 Project enrollment numbers have doubled in the last two years, and in 2014 project members placed first and second in the state tractor driving competition. Arnholt has served on the Bartholomew County Extension Board and Bartholomew County 4-H Council. He is active at St. Peter's Lutheran Church, serving on both its Board of Elders and School Board. Arnholt's passion for economic development has led to roles as the Vice-Chair of Education and Workforce Development committee of the Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce; Chair of Columbus Economic Development Board; Chair of the Columbus Enterprise Development Corporation and Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce Agribusiness Council. He has served as Chair for Hoosier Managers Association, on the board of the Farm Electrification Council, as Vice-Chair for Indiana FFA Foundation, and as a board member of Purdue's Alpha Kappa Lambda Fraternity. In 1987, Arnholt was elected to represent southeast Indiana on the board of the Purdue Ag Alumni Association, and he served that role for 13 years before serving as Vice President (2000-2002) and President (2002-2004). His philanthropic service has had wide-ranging impact on a number of organizations as well. Arnholt's extensive activity with the Community Foundation of Bartholomew County includes service to the Heritage Fund, serving as a member of the Board of Directors, and as chairman of the Grants and General Scholarship Selection Committees. In Bartholomew County, Arnholt has given leadership to the Heritage Fund Gifts of Grain program, with Sudan Farms being one of several farms participating. To support Agrllnstitute through the Community Foundation of Bartholomew County, Arnholt led an effort to raise funds in the county, which has resulted in $55,000 in contributions to the Agrllnstitute Endowment Fund of the Heritage Fund since 1987. Arnholt shared this success with other agricultural communities and led an effort to establish similar funds in other community foundations. To date, thirteen other endowment funds totaling $336,000 have been established in community foundations around the state to support Agrllnstitute. Arnholt's work has been recognized with several awards. In 2002 he received the Bartholomew County Rural Service Award. In 2008, the Rural Electric Association honored him with its Regional Award for Outstanding Service. In 201 O Sudan Farms was named Conservation Farm of th-e Year by the Bartholomew County Soil and Water Conservation District. And in 2014 the Heritage Fund of the Community Foundation of Bartholomew County presented Arnholt with its James A. Henderson Award.
David Heller graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in landscape architecture in 1991. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1996 with a master of science in business, majoring in real estate development and investment analysis. He holds landscape architecture licenses in Wisconsin and Illinois. From 1991 to 1994 he worked for Van Zelst Incorporated, a residential landscape firm in Wadsworth, Illinois, where he activated a computer bidding and job estimation program to improve the firm's efficiencies. After earning his master's degree, he worked for three years in Milwaukee for WISPARK, a full-service real estate development company that specializes in complex commercial developments. At WI SPARK, Heller directed the development of an 85-acre business" park adjoining Mitchell International Airport and was instrumental in coordinating infrastructure to a 185-acre Milwaukee-area industrial park. In 1999 he founded Heller & Associates, based in Racine, Wisconsin. Heller's expertise has led him to create master landscape plans for residences, senior living facilities, corporate headquarters, and college campuses. He is the primary landscape consultant for several architecture firms and building contractors in Wisconsin and Illinois. He has developed more than 16 landscape designs for independent senior living facilities throughout Illinois. Major projects include landscape plans for the new corporate headquarters for Manpower Incorporated, the new corporate facility for GE HealthCare and the regional distribution facility for GE Healthcare. One of Heller's largest projects is the $1.5 million master plan for the corporate headquarters of ULINE Corporation, and he is currently working on the plan for a national distribution and fulfillment center of a major national retailer with an installation budget of approximately $500,000. Heller has volunteered his time and talent for numerous community projects. Purdue Agriculture Fish Fry • 2074 In 2009, he was appointed as a plan commission member for the village of Wind Point, Wisconsin. As a plan commissioner, he has helped the committee with zoning regulations, overseeing parks and facilities and preserving the integrity of the Lake Michigan shoreland and surrounding watershed. In 2012, he was elected a village trustee, and he now serves as a trustee liaison to the plan commission. He is helping a lighthouse built in 1880 in the village become ADAaccessible, so people of all ages and abilities can use it. Heller is actively involved in the ministry of St. Michael's Church where he is a lay leader. He is an adult mentor for the youth group and serves as the science coordinator and teacher for the church's annual vacation Bible school where he designs and runs a series of participatory experiments each of the five program nights. Heller has coordinated and actively leads Super Tuesdays, a twelve-week, twice-a-year adult education program. He has also contributed his professional talents to the church after a major restructuring of the property, providing a new landscape design, donating all the plant materials, assisting with installation, and paying neighborhood youth to keep everything watered. Heller has been an active member and leader of the Purdue Alumni Club of Milwaukee, serving as a board member, vice president/social chair (his current role), and two terms as president. He also serves on the scholarship selection committee. For many years, Heller has organized the club's support of the Purdue Crew when they row in the Milwaukee River Challenge in September, coordinating food and drinks both during and after the race for the 90+ students, as well as organizing local alumni to gather and cheer for the rowers. He also leads the club's service project, coordinating Boilermaker volunteers to source, prepare, and serve a donated meal at the Milwaukee Ronald McDonald House.
Beth Theobald graduated from Purdue University in December 1980 with a B.S. in horticulture. She then embarked on a career as the vocational agriculture teacher and FFA advisor for Delphi Community School Corporation (DCSC), a position she has held for more than 32 years. In 1986 she earned her M.S. in Education from Purdue, and in 1995 she completed Purdue's Leadership Development Program. Four years ago, she launched a business as co-owner of BeBe's Flowers. Theobald grew up on a farm in Jamestown and participated in the agriculture program at Western Boone High School, and both experiences contributed to her success as she entered what was then an entirely male profession. She's followed in the footsteps of many legendary agriculture teachers who build programs that impact hundreds of students, but Theobald has simultaneously blazed a pathway and served as a role model and mentor for the women who followed her. Because she was successful, she had credibility with the young teachers, both men and women, who followed her. And because she was a woman, other women could see that this profession was indeed one that offered opportunities for them. At DCSCTheobald has been an innovator and a problem-solver. Her superintendent calls her a "master teacher" and "the most caring person I have seen in K-12 education:' She created a career internship program to place seniors in local businesses. Under her leadership, Workplace Readiness and Peer Tutoring programs were initiated. She wrote the curriculum for Workplace Readiness, a class designed for the Indiana Department of Education, and she recently wrote a curriculum for agricultural education offerings in that area. Peer Tutoring is a course that allows agriculture students to share agriculture lab courses with elementary students. Professional service has been the hallmark ofTheobald's career. As a member of the Delphi Community Teachers Association, she haschaired the Alternative School, Sick Bank, Discussion, Professional Development, and Tech Prep committees. She has served the Indiana Association of Agricultural Educators (IAAE) as District V Director, as evaluator for ag education license exam, as a member of the curriculum development committee and as the state mentoring coordinator. As the leader of the state mentoring program, Theobald made changes to better meet the needs of inexperienced teachers, resulting in more active membership from this group. She has served the Purdue Youth Development and Agricultural Education (YDAE) Department as a member of the Agricultural Education Advisory Board and as a laboratory site for Education Block I and II. Theobald has served on a YDAE faculty search committee and, for two semesters, while YDAE was searching for a new assistant professor in agricultural education, she was an instructor in the department. She has hosted more than 60 early field experience students to help them explore teaching careers, and 22 student teachers have gained experience under her direction. Theobald was a founding member of the Delphi City Parks Board and has served on the advisory board for the White County Soil and Water Conservation District. She has served White County 4-H as a member of the swine committee and as the superintendent of the flower project. Awards Theobald has won include: IAAE Outstanding Agricultural Educator and District V Outstanding Agriculture Department; National Association of Agricultural Educators state and national Mentoring Award; Indiana Trails Cooperative Teacher of the Year, Program of the Year and Leadership Award; Purdue YDAE Mentoring Award and Purdue-IAAE Honorary Member. The Indiana FFA Association awarded Theobald an Honorary Hoosier Farmer Degree.
John B. Swisher is the founder, chairman and CEO of JBS United in Sheridan, Indiana. Swisher graduated from the University of Illinois in 1951 with a B.S. in animal science. He went to work for his grandfather's feed business, Charles Swisher and Son, in Danville, Illinois. But Swisher had an idea for a different kind of feed company that would market high quality feed directly to farmers at a competitive price with a sales force that was knowledgeable and honest. It was an unknown model in the 1950s, but today all major U.S. nutrition companies, and many around the world, employ these principles. In 1955, Indianapolis packer Stark and Wetzel contracted with Swisher to start a feed division and agreed to let him try his idea. But a year later, the company decided to back out of the feed venture, and Swisher was left with a young family and no job. Convinced that he had a good idea, Swisher borrowed $25,000 from his parents and his mother-in-law and launched United Feeds, now known as JBS United. Through dedication to sound business principles and his skill as a salesman, Swisher built JBS United into an international company with a number of proprietary products. JBS United is also one of the world's largest swine research organizations in the world. The company produces feed for more than 10 million U.S. swine at seven locations throughout the Midwest. When founded, JBS United focused on one species, swine, but today makes products for major animal production entities in swine, dairy, layers, broilers, and horses. Another of the company's innovations is its financial records program. The system was established to report and manage the costs of pork production in confined feeding conditions, a new trend in the 1970s when the company built its first nutrition research farm. The information from the system was used by the JBS United sales force to help customers adopt more profitable practices. As a result of its popularity, the system was commercialized and distributed among the company's customers. Now in addition to research on applied animal nutrition, Swisher hasled his company to apply the same principles to grain merchandising and pork production. Swisher's service to the industry includes six years on the board of directors of the Indiana Pork Producers; six years as the Indiana delegate on the National Pork Producers Council; and four years on the board and one year as chairman of the Indiana Institute of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition (now Agrllnstitute). Swisher is a former member of the Purdue Agriculture Dean's Advisory Council, and he served four years on the board of the Indiana 4-H Foundation. He has been engaged with at least ten service organizations in Sheridan. He has served North Minster Presbyterian Church as an elder and has been president of the Royal Pine Civic Association. The many awards and honors bestowed on Swisher include Indiana Pork Producers' Meritorious Service for both Producer (1972) and Industry (2006); University of Illinois Alumni Association Award of Merit (1985); Ernst and Young National Entrepreneur of the Year, Manufacturing and Distribution (2004); Indiana Business Hall of Fame from Junior Chamber of Commerce (2007); Business Leader of the Year from Indiana Chamber of Commerce (2009); AgriVision Award from Indiana Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman (2009); the first annual John B. Swisher Swine Industry Leadership Award (2009); and Sagamore of the Wabash from Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels (2010). In 1997, Purdue University awarded him an Honorary Doctor of Agriculture degree.
Bill Kuhn graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in agronomy in 1968. After two years in the U.S. Army where he served in the military police, he continued his education at the University of Minnesota, earning both an M.S. and a Ph.D. in plant breeding in 1973 and 1974, respectively. Following graduation, Kuhn began his career with Pioneer Hi- Bred International, Inc., where he spent 32 years and established a distinguished record of accomplishments in maize breeding and in service to the plant breeding and seed professions. He began as a corn breeder with Pioneer and retired as Research Director, Maize Product Development for North America. As a corn breeder, he developed early generation topcross evaluation methods, and his breeding work directly resulted in more than 52 corn inbred lines and six hybrid varieties. One of the hybrids identified by Kuhn's methods, Pioneer 3489, sold 500,000 units from 1982 to1992. In his role as research director, he managed a budget of $21 million to develop the product lines that contributed over $1 billion per year in revenue to the company. In 1997, Pioneer honored Kuhn with its Owen J. Newlin Business Excellence Award. Kuhn's national professional service included 16 years on the Scientific Advisory Council for the American Seed Research Foundation. He served in numerous capacities for the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) and, as chairman of its Corn and Sorghum Basic Research Committee, established a strong linkage to USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS). He served as ASTA's North Central Regional Vice President and provided leadership on discussions on intellectual property rights. Kuhn served on the board of directors of the National Council of Commercial Plant Breeders from 1999 to 2002, and on the awards committee from 1996 to 1998. In his role at Pioneer, Kuhn oversaw a donation of $1.5 million to the Latin American Maize Project, which preserved and evaluated more than 12,000 maizeaccessions from twelve countries and resulted in this germ plasm's global availability to breeders. He helped realign responsibilities for ARS's Genetic Enhancement of Maize (GEM) project, and worked to review GEM programs at the University of Missouri and Iowa State University. Kuhn also served on the ARS grain crop improvement review team in 1996 and on the Cold Spring Harbor Advisory Committee. Locally he has served Aldersgate United Methodist Church in many capacities, including serving on the administrative board; leading or co-leading the Trustees, Finance, Church & Society, and Vision Teams; teaching Sunday School; and, currently, acting as Missions co-chair. Since his retirement in 2006, he has been active with the Urbandale Lions Club, where he served as third, second, and now first vice president and co-chair of the Sight and Hearing Committee where he spends many hours on Lions' signature programs. In 2011, he received the Warren Coleman Honorary Award from the Iowa Lions Foundation for dedicated service in Lion ism. He is a charter member of the Purdue Alumni Club of Central Iowa (PACCI) where he has chaired the committee that established the club's scholarships for Iowa students attending Purdue. He has served two terms as president of the group, which is consistently one of the leading clubs outside of Indiana in terms of both number of scholarships and total dollars awarded. He and wife Joyce established the Emerson J. Kuhn Endowed Memorial Scholarship at Purdue for students in animal sciences and agronomy; 22 undergraduates have received awards from this endowment. In 2006, he was named a Fellow by the Crop Science Society of America, the society's highest honor reserved for less than half a percent of its members. And in 2010, he received the Agronomic Achievement Award from Purdue's Agronomy Department.
2014David W. and Mary J.HowellMiddletownIN
David and Mary Howell are first-generation farmers who took borrowed equipment and 300 acres of rented land and built it into a farm operation that includes more than 4,000 acres of corn, soybeans, processing tomatoes, and jack-a-lantern pumpkins in Indiana and international farm operations in Brazil. The Howells were nominated together for this award. As one supporting letter writer observed, theirs is a 11true partnership in life;1 and that 11in character, Mary was Dave, and he was her:1They built their operation together, and so the record of supporting material is shared by two people who are equally deserving of this recognition. David graduated from Purdue University, receiving both his B.S. and M.S. in agricultural economics in 1969 and 1971, respectively. While at Purdue, he was inducted into Ceres and Alpha Zeta honorary societies. Mary graduated from Ball State University with a B.S. in nursing in 1973, and was inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau nursing honorary. In 1972, the Howells founded Howell Farms. For the first two years, Mary worked as a nurse in charge of obstetrics at Ball Memorial Hospital, then resigned to devote full time to the family1s farm business. In the farm crisis of the 1980s, they struggled to hold onto the land they had purchased, and, out of necessity, they launched innovative ventures that would fuel their success. The loss of a farrowing house in a fire prompted the Howells to seek enterprises other than livestock to provide mid-season cash flow. They diversified with fruits and vegetables sold through four retail outlets, one of them located onsite. They planted and managed a 3,000-tree apple orchard. Mary began hosting school tours-the beginning of agritourism before it had that name-and this grew into a small industry. Each fall, Howell Farms hosted several thousand children, parents, and teachers; taught them the importance of agriculture; and sent them home with a freshly picked apple and apumpkin. During the two decades of farm tours, they estimate that around 200,000 visitors heard 11the story of food;' creating goodwill that is still evident today, several years after the retail markets were closed. Labor and management on the farm were shared by David and Mary, with both operating equipment. David made the agronomic decisions and Mary handled cash flow planning, along with the tax and enterprise accounting. Before most farmers ever thought about computers, the Howells employed a programmer and developed software to keep the detailed records they wanted, and they built a special room to house the temperature and dust-sensitive, refrigerator-sized NCR computer that ran it. As their two sons came back into the farm management in the 21st century, the Howells again innovated and changed to fuel the necessary growth of the operation. They shifted from retail sales to the production of pumpkins and processing tomatoes for wholesale customers. And they grew the grain operation, increasing yields and efficiency with new practices and intensive management. To continue their growth, they purchased a farm in Bahia, Brazil. Both sons had become fluent in Portuguese, and one of them, Aaron, moved to Brazil to manage the farm. Seeing opportunities, they organized an investor-owned company to purchase a larger farm. Before receiving an attractive offer to sell, the farm had grown into a multi-thousand-acre operation growing cotton, soybeans, and corn. But both will tell you that their best crop is their four children, three of whom work with them in the farm business. The fourth is a teacher who lives just across the road from the farm headquarters. The Howells served agriculture and their community in numerous roles. Early in their careers, they were appointed to the Indiana Farm Bureau Young Farmer Committee. They represented Indiana at the national level as members of the American Farm Bureau Federation(AFBF) Young Farmer and Rancher Committee when David was elected president of the Indiana group. David then was elected president of the national committee, and became a member ofthe AFBF board of directors. In this role, they traveled together, speaking at young farmer conferences to encourage involvement. They wrote and presented a dialogue relative to young farm families to the American Institute of Cooperatives. More recently, David and Mary have written and made presentations about commercial Midwest American agriculture to the French-American Foundation in Paris at the AGri-Days II symposium. They have represented U.S. farmers at a U.S. Grains Council sponsored Corn Conference and Japanese Feed Manufacturers meeting in Tokyo. And, they have presented programs about their family's involvement in Brazilian agriculture to both the Missouri and Indiana Farm Bureau state conventions. David and Mary are founding members of the Crossroads Lutheran Church Historical Preservation Society, which rescued an historic 19th century abandoned church and, after many fund-raising events, restored the building and gained its listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Philanthropically, the Howells annually fund the care of a child at Hope Children's Home in India and support the education of the older children of this home. They also actively participated in the Hurricane Katrina relief efforts through Red Gold, Inc. David has served on the Purdue Dean of Agriculture's Advisory Committee. He was instrumental in establishing the first corn check-off program in Indiana and served on the first Indiana Corn Marketing Council board of directors as Vice President. David also served as chairman ofthe U.S. Grains Council's Asia A-Team and represented them on their corn production tour of China and at the formal signing of the new Free Trade Agreement in Columbia. He also served on the Advisory Council on Agriculture, Small Business and Labor for the Chicago Federal Reserve Bank, and has twice testified before Congressional committees. David has served his home community on the board of directors for First Merchants Bank and Ivy Tech Region 6, and as chairman of the Delaware County Extension Council and the Muncie Delaware Metropolitan Plan Commission where he helped establish the first agriculturalzone in Indiana. Currently, David is a member of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) Trade and Biotechnology A-Team, and he serves on the advisory boards of the Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) and the Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture. Mary was active as the Fall Creek Township boy's 4-H club leader, and served on the Wapahani Girl Scout Council board of directors. The farm they've built has been host to numerous tours, many of which showcased their innovations and management practices, including the Indiana Farm ManagementTour, the Purdue Agriculture New Faculty Tour, Congressional Town Hall Meeting, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Agriculture's Midwest Farm Tour and the Royal Netherlands Agriculture Minister's Midwestern Tour. On other occasions they've hosted trade missions from Taiwan and China, helping to enhance U.S. grain exports. David and Mary were named honorary commissioners of agriculture by Indiana Lt. Gov. John Mutz. They have received multiple Red Gold Master Grower awards and the Reichart Award for professionalism and excellence in the tomato industry. David was awarded the Order of the Red Tie by Indiana Horticulture Congress and in 2008 was named a Distinguished Agriculture Alumnus by Purdue University. In 2011, David and Mary were jointly named Master Farmers by Purdue University and Prairie Farmer magazine.
2014JohnD. DiehlDansvilleMI
John Diehl is a native of Dansville, Michigan, and graduated from Purdue University in 1969 with a B.S. in agricultural engineering. At Purdue he was a member of Alpha Gamma Rho Fraternity, where, according to him, he forged friendships with brothers who "are the real winners of this award:' Following graduation, Diehl worked for a year at International Harvester designing tractor engines. He then enlisted in the U.S. Navy and became a P-3 Patrol Plane Crewman. After three years in the Navy, he returned to the family farm in Dansville, becoming a thirdgeneration farmer in the family enterprise. Diehl's father had begun growing Michigan Certified Seed in 1968, and John continued growing certified seed upon his return. During the next 20-plus years, he and his family farmed thousands of acres of corn, wheat, navy beans, and soybeans. During this time, Diehl developed a true passion for soybean and wheat seed genetics. His "Best of the Best" soybean variety trial was started in 1976 to compare public varieties. In 1980, proprietary varities were added along with tests of various seed treatments. As the "Best of the Best" continues today with over 132 varieties entered in 2013, Diehl evaluates disease and insect patterns, maturity and planting date patterns, and numerous patented traits. In 1996, Diehl Fields closed down and the farming partnership was dissolved. In 1997, with the financial backing and moral support of his fraternity brothers from Purdue, John established D.F. Seeds, Inc., as a contract soybean seed producer for several national brands that also sold some of their Michigan Certified Seed soybean and wheat varieties. As seed companies consolidated in the early 2000s, D.F. Seeds, Inc., began to sell their own brand of proprietary soybean and wheat varieties, and today markets their own brand exclusively through an independent retailer network throughout Michigan, a brand that in 2013 included 31 soybean varieties. Diehl served on the Michigan Foundation Seed Association board of directors from 1985 through 1993, serving as secretary/treasurer for seven years and vice president for one year. He also served on the Michigan Crop Improvement Association (MCIA) scholarship committee and quality assurance committee. He was a member of the Ingham County Farm Bureau Board from 2001-2005, during which he served on the Statewide Commodities Advisory Committee and worked with legislative seminars held at the Michigan capitol. Diehl is a long-time supporter of Dansville athletics, academics, and civic programs. Parenting a special needs son led him to become active in county education policies, and he was recognized in the 1980s for his several years of service on the Ingham Intermediate PAC committee that was instrumental in mainstreaming special needs children into regular classrooms. He served as a volunteer firefighter and EMT for Ingham Township for 20 years and on the Executive Fire Board for another 10 years. He passionately supports local 4-H youth, funding the Ingham County Goat Barn Award and supporting livestock auctions and other activities. According to his nominator, when he gets outbid buying an animal of one of "his kids;' he sends them a check anyway with an apology that he didn't get their animal. In 2007, Diehl was named Outstanding Alumnus from Dansville High School, a recognition that is given not only for personal success, but to someone who continues to give back to the community. In 2009, he received the MCIA's highest honor, its Honorary Membership Award, in appreciation for his support and efforts to improve the association.
Bob Burke is a native of Montgomery County and graduated from Purdue University in 1960 with a B.S. in forestry. Prior to his graduation, he had served two years in the U.S. Army assigned to the 33rd Field Hospital in Fontainebleau, France. Burke's distinguished career began after graduation with a job as a walnut log grader, buyer, and sawmill worker for the Pierson Hollowell Veneer Company, Indiana's leading hardwood veneer company. In 1965, he implemented a new hardwood forest management department for the company, and for the next 33 years until his retirement, he was the company's head forester. He managed a teamof four foresters, and established walnut and hardwood plantations throughout Indiana for the company, as well as for research purposes for the U.S. Forest Service and Purdue University. In 1979 he established an independent forestry consulting business focused on the establishment and management of walnut plantations. His clients include former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar and sportscaster Chris Schenkel.His nominator called Burke"Mr. Forestry" in Indiana, saying his name is synonymous with the highest standards for the practice of forestry and with service to the profession. He has served as chairman of the Indiana Tree Farm Committee of the American Forest Council (AFC) since 1970 and has served on numerous AFC committees. With Senator Lugar and Dennis LeMaster, former head of Purdue's Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, he co-founded the Hardwood Tree Improvement and Regeneration Center (HTIRC) at Purdue, and serves on its advisory committee. Burke has promoted the Indiana hardwood industry on trade missions to Vietnam and Taiwan, participated in international hardwood study tours in Germany and France, and traveled to 12 European countries to exchange forest management practices. He co-founded the Walnut Council in 1970 and served as its president in 1983. In 1995 he co-founded the Walnut Council Foundation and has served as its president since that time. Burke has been a member of the Indiana Hardwood Lumberman's Association (IHLA) throughout his career, serving as chair of the forestry committee. As a member ofthe Society of American Foresters (SAF) he has served as chairman (1974) and secretary-treasurer (1968-71) of the Indiana Chapter. Burke served six years as chair of the forestry committee of the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD), the first person from Indiana to ever be appointed to this committee. He was co-founder of the Hoosier Heartland Resource Conservation & Development Council and served as its vicechairman for five years. Burke's community service includes 10 years of membership in the Kiwanis Club of Martinsville, which he served as president in 1983. He was a supervisor for the Morgan County Soil & Water Conservation District for 30 years, serving as its chairman for 28 years. Burke's many awards and recognitions include: the Walnut Council's Black Walnut Achievement Award; IHLA Honorary Director (1978) and Honorary Life Member (1995); election as a Fellow of the SAF (1985), Indiana Chapter SAF Distinguished Career Award (1997) and Outstanding Career Award (2002); Certificate of Recognition from the U.S. Senate (1987); Indiana Wildlife Federation's Forest Conservationist of the Year (1988); Friend of Forestry Award from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (1996); and the Indiana Forest and Woodlands Owners Association's President's Award (2000). In 2010 he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Agriculture degree by Purdue University.
2014D. WilliamBiddleWest LafayetteIndiana
Bill Biddle is a native of Benton County, Indiana, and graduated from Purdue in 1964 with a B.S. in agricultural economics. Following graduation, Biddle served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Army from 1965 to 1967, including one year in Vietnam. In 1968, he returned home and joined his father in Biddle Farms. Late that year, upon his father's untimely death, he became the owner and manager of the family's farming operation and the fourth generation of his family to farm in Benton County. In 1970, he founded Biddle Seeds, Inc., and began a career-long engagement with the seed industry. In 1986, he expanded the family's business interests with the founding of Biddle Insurance Service, Inc. Biddle has an extensive record of leadership in Indiana agriculture and in the seed industry, prompting one nominator to write, "this award was designed to recognize men like Bill Biddle:' He is a graduate of the first class of the Indiana Agricultural Leadership Program, and from 1985 to 1986 he served as the second chairman of the program's sponsoring organization, the newly formed Indiana Institute of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition. He was a charter board member of the Public Varieties of Indiana program, which promotes certified public varieties. He served on numerous committees of the Indiana Crop Improvement Association (!CIA) over more than 40 years of service, and held leadership roles that included 27 years on the board of directors (1978-81 and 1985-2009). He was a member of the board of directors of the Indiana Seed Trade Association (ISTA) from 1982-86. In 1986 he served as president of both !CIA and ISTA. During more than a decade of service to the American Soybean Association (1970-1981 ), he served as secretary and as treasurer, and he was part of the ASA Trade Committee that visited China and Japan in 1980. He is a longtime leader of the Ag Alumni Seed Improvement Association, the foundation seed company of the Purdue College of Agriculture that is affiliated with the Purdue Ag Alumni Association, Inc. Since 1980 he has been a member of the board of directors of Ag Alumni Seed, and since 1988 he has served as president/chairman of the board. Since 1990 he has served on the board of directors for Indiana Farmers Mutual Insurance Company. Biddle's service and leadership extends to his church and community as well. He is a former president of the Purdue Acacia Fraternity Building Association. He is a former member of the Benton County Extension Board and the Advisory Board of Gilboa Township. From 1992 to 1998 he served on the Tri-County School Corporation Board. And for 30 years, from 1969 to 1999, he was Clerk of the Session for the First Presbyterian Church in Remington, where he was also a longtime member of the church choir. His community memberships also included the Remington American Legion and the Remington Masonic Lodge. In 1982, Biddle's seed farming operation was chosen to host the Indiana Farm ManagementTour. Biddle's honors include the Indiana Crop Improvement Association's Crops and Soils Merit Award (1994) and being named a Distinguished Agriculture Alumnus of the Purdue College of Agriculture (2000).
2013DickReelLaPorteINDick Reel
A graduate of Vincennes University and Indiana State University with a B.S. in Health, Physical Education, and Recreation in 1969 and a M.S. in Community Development, Institutional, City, County, and Rehabilitative Recreation in 1970, Dick Reel has taken his passion for community and used it to build a successful career as an Extension educator in both the 4-H Youth and Leadership and Community Development programs.
Reel began influencing the lives of young people as a 4-H youth educator, a position he held for more than 20 years. In 1989, Reel was elected president of the National Association of 4-H Extension Agents. He took another leadership role as a north central director for the NAE4-HA, followed by membership on the national board and the highly esteemed position of chairman. His other contributions to the 4-H program include working with the beef project and livestock auction in his county. His facilitation of the Adult Leadership program while a youth educator helped to build leaders in public and private high schools, as well as homes where children are home schooled.
In 1992, Reel became LaPorte County Extension Director. For the next 11 years, he worked directly with adult leadership and community development, while overseeing all of the county's Extension programs. As CED, he worked with Leadership LaPorte County, and now, almost 10 years after his retirement, continues as a volunteer facilitator for the program. He is also the lead volunteer of the program's high school leadership training program, which in 2012 graduated 35 students representing all of the county's high schools.
 Pioneer history is a passion for Reel, and he has shared that passion through his work with LaPorte County's Pioneerland and with the Pioneer Village at the Indiana State Fair. His work with Pioneer Village began 19 years ago. Reel has volunteered his time and skills in the art of woodworking for fairgoers, and each year donates a wood-burned bench as one of the featured artisan crafts to be auctioned, with the proceeds going to Purdue Ag Alumni to help restore antique artifacts. At the county level, Reel also is responsible for the development of Pioneerland at the LaPorte County Fairgrounds. The project's pioneer village has 12 buildings and is staffed with 130 volunteers who demonstrate what life was like in 1840 Indiana. Reel was important in raising more than $250,000 for the construction of the buildings.
 Reel's love for LaPorte County is clearly seen through his dedication to Pioneerland, but he has also participated in many other community activities over the years. He was a member of the Swanson Mental Health Board for five years, a member of the County Park Board and the Solid Waste Citizens Advisory Board for 10 years, a member of the Kiwanis Club for 12 years, and a beef committee and Purdue Council for Agricultural Research, Extension and Teaching (PCARET) committee member. When he retired, he said his biggest achievement was helping the county develop four parks over 10 years, including Creek Ridge County Park near Michigan City and Bluhm County Park outside Westville. Reel's honors include the John P. Daly Leadership Award and being named a Sagamore of the Wabash, the highest award given by the governor of Indiana.
 Reel is known as a people person who is energetic about the projects that he is passionate about. He took the passion that he had for agriculture and the Indiana State Fair as a 14-year-old usher and turned it into a career and lifelong volunteer project. Through his endeavors, he has touched a number of people in his community and the state of Indiana.
2013Becky SkillmanBedfordINBecky Skillman
As a public servant, Becky Skillman has distinguished herself as an advocate for rural communities and for Indiana agriculture. Raised in rural Lawrence County, she was a nine-year 4-H member. Skillman began her public service career in 1977 when she was elected as the Lawrence County recorder. Eight years later, she was elected as Lawrence County clerk. During her 16 years of service to Lawrence County, she was elected as president of the Association of Indiana Counties. In 1992, Skillman was elected to the Indiana Senate, representing five southern Indiana counties. Rising quickly through the ranks, she held the second highest position as majority caucus chair, becoming the first woman in Senate Republican leadership. During her 12 years in the Senate, she led the charge to include the state's small towns and rural communities in its economic development plans. Skillman authored plans for development in distressed counties and revitalization of downtown areas.
In 2005, Skillman became Indiana's 49th lieutenant governor, and the first woman elected to that office. According to the National Lieutenant Governors Association, she had more legal duties than any other lieutenant governor in the country. She managed five state agencies that administered nearly $1 billion in programs: the Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA), the Office of Energy Development, the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, the Office of Community and Rural Affairs, and the Office of Tourism Development. Additionally, she chaired the state's Counter Terrorism and Security Council, and served as president of the Indiana Senate.
Skillman was instrumental in the creation of both ISDA and the Office of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA). OCRA was formed to give rural communities a greater degree of equality with larger cities and towns. Skillman was key to successfully forging partnerships between the newly formed ISDA and existing agricultural agencies and offices, to ensure that Indiana producers were represented effectively. Through her influence, Indiana's Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP), Indiana On-Farm Network, Certified Livestock Producer Program (CLPP), and Indiana Grown program were launched. She also helped bring the FFA Association into the Indiana State Department of Agriculture. While in office, Skillman led economic trade missions that resulted in partnerships and opened up opportunities for Indiana business, including agriculture, in Central America, Taiwan, Vietnam, Mexico, China, and Japan.
As lieutenant governor, Skillman launched the Hoosier Agribusiness and Science Academy program. This program allows urban students in middle school and high school to see agriculture close up and prepare them to pursue college degrees in agriculture. She championed the Indiana Grown program to brand and more easily identify Hoosier-produced goods. The program is a cooperative effort that involves producers, processors, wholesalers, retailers, and ISDA. Skillman has been recognized with numerous awards, including the 2007 Woman of Influence from the Indianapolis Business Journal, the Patriot Award for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve in 2008, and the Niagara Foundation's Lifetime Leadership Award in 2012.
2013ThomasH. McKinneyKemptonINTom McKinney
Tom McKinney's leadership and dedication are a love letter to Tipton County. A 1980 graduate of Purdue University with a B.S. in Agricultural Economics and Animal Science, McKinney helped to increase McKinney & McKinney, his family farming operation, fivefold. Today he serves as president and general manager. He is also involved with Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc. as a seed dealer for north central Indiana, holds a Precision Planting and Ag Leader dealership, and operates a custom spraying and tassel pulling business for seed corn in north and central Indiana. From 1975 to 2003 he operated McKinney Seed Corn Detasseling and Deroguing, which eventually employed 600 local youth who learned the importance of a strong work ethic.
 McKinney is active in many agricultural organizations. He serves as vice president of the Indiana 4-H Foundation, was president of Purdue Council for Agriculture Research, Extension, and Teaching (PCARET) for four years, and served as a member of the commodity committee of Indiana Farm Bureau Inc., as well as the USDA's Indiana Farm Service Agency (FSA) State Committee. McKinney served a four-year term on the Purdue College of Agriculture Dean's Advisory Council.
 McKinney has also worked as an advisor to bank employees in regard to agricultural loans and trusts at First National Bank & Trust (now Harris Bank) for 17 years. He has also served on the advisory board of Indiana University-Kokomo (IUK) since 1992, representing the agricultural interests of the community through advancing the agricultural programs at IUK. McKinney is also a member of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council and the Indiana Soybean Association.
 While McKinney is involved in many state and national programs, he is the greatest advocate for Tipton County. The list of local programs that he volunteers his time toward include the Tipton County Library, Tipton County Hospital, Tipton County Extension Board, Kemp United Methodist Church, and Tipton County Purdue Alumni Association. McKinney has been involved with the Tipton Community School Corporation in two influential ways. He is a member of the Tipton Community School Building Corporation, and he has been very involved in the FFA program in the county. When the agriculture teacher who advised Tipton FFA and the judging and leadership contests left midway through the school year, McKinney took the responsibility of the FFA upon himself for almost two years. While doing much of the coaching himself, he also enlisted the help of experts in the community. Under his leadership, the Tipton FFA never missed a contest.
 Another of McKinney's great contributions to his community is his service on the Tipton County Foundation Board. A large donation was made to the city of Tipton from the Mount Estate and was used to fund a community center for children and adults. McKinney was appointed as one of the leaders of the project in charge of making decisions on how to best spend the financial gift. Today, the community center is used to house the Tipton County Boys and Girls Club, The Encore Senior Center, Encore Food Pantry, IU Health Lifetime Fitness Center, three banquet rooms, a gymnasium, a walking track, and private events. McKinney's guidance of this project was instrumental to its success. It was also through his passion and hard work that the Tipton County Education Center received a $4.1 million grant from Lilly Endowment, Inc. McKinney's decades of service continue to help Tipton County, and through the C.W. Mount Community Center and the Tipton County Education Center, in particular, his influence will be felt for decades to come.
2013LynnP. Martin Fort WayneIN Lynn P. Martin
Lynn Martin has spent his life caring for both people and animals alike through the many service projects and his career in veterinary medicine. Martin graduated from Purdue University in 1960 with a B.S. in Agriculture. Four years later, in 1964, he earned his DVM from Purdue. The Allen County native was a second lieutenant in the Purdue ROTC program in 1960 before transferring to the Veterinary Army Corp in 1964. Also in 1964 Martin completed Food Inspection School in Chicago. He was the only veterinarian at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico, where he was responsible not only for the care of 3,000 pets and 70 horses, but also for all food that entered the base. Martin began a small animal clinic on base that was open regularly for three hours three days a week. He also set up a 24-hour emergency care clinic for base animals.
 Back in Indiana, Martin has worked as an associate at the South Bend Animal Clinic and the Dufore Veterinary Hospital in Elkhart, IN. He also founded the Fort Wayne Pet Hospital (FWPH) in 1969, a practice with two full-time veterinarians, one part-time veterinarian, a staff of 12, and high school students who work there as part of school curriculum. To this day, Martin still spends more than 40 hours of his week working at the pet hospital. He is a member of AVMA, IVMA, NEIVMA, and the Fort Wayne Veterinary Medicine Association, having been a past president of NEIVMA and a past secretary and treasurer of the Fort Wayne Veterinary Medicine Association. Martin also volunteered to run blood tests on 4-H pigs for both Allen County and the state fair for pseudorabies at no charge.
 On average, Martin contributes more than 1,000 hours per year to various community organizations. He has taught students at Carroll High School about veterinary medicine in a six-week course and instructed elementary school students about veterinary care and pet ownership. Martin has worked extensively with the 4-H program. He has served as a 4-H leader in Allen County for more than 40 years. He set up farm tours for the Perry Booster 4-H Club so that the youth could see beef, swine, sheep, and poultry. He was one of the founders of the 4-H cat project and wrote the first record book and manual for the project for the state of Indiana. To promote the cat project, he taught cat workshops for 22 years and gave health checks to cats entered in the Allen County 4-H Cat Show for 23 years. In addition, he has supervised 4-H exhibits at the county fair for 20 years and was a leader in reinstating the 4-H parade at the new Allen County Fairgrounds. Martin has supported numerous agricultural programs through his service to the Allen County Purdue Ag Alumni and FarmHouse Fraternity. He is a charter member of the Center for Agricultural Science and Heritage, helping to establish the fund that moved the Normandy Barn to the Indiana State Fairgrounds.
 The Boy Scouts have long been a passion for Martin, as all three of his sons and one of his grandsons have earned Eagle Scout rank. Martin has been an active member of the Boy Scout Committee for St. Vincent's for more than 40 years. He has hosted fundraisers and has made red oak plaques for new Eagle scouts — 214 to date. Martin was a volunteer for the Boy Scout program's Halloween fundraiser, The Haunted Castle and Black Forest, for 32 years, through building and donating lumber used for the buildings in the Black Forest. This project raises money for 65 Boy Scout troops. He also taught merit badge classes for agribusiness, animal science, bird study, dog care, farm mechanics, forestry, mammal study, pets, plant science, soil and water, and veterinary medicine, helping 35 boys to achieve these badges. Over the years, he has mentored 12 young men who have earned their Eagle Scout rank. For his extensive contributions, Martin was honored by Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels with the Distinguished Hoosier Award, one of the state's highest citizen awards.
2013JimHicksBreaCAJim Hicks
From a small Morgan County, Indiana, farm to co-founding and founding two successful businesses, Jim Hicks has lived a successful life. Hicks graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in Agricultural Economics in 1961, and immediately was hired by the California Spray Chemical Company (later renamed Chevron Chemical Company) as a representative to sell ag chemicals for tobacco and corn growers in Kentucky. While his work was interrupted briefly in 1962 when his Air Force Reserve unit was called to active duty during the Cuban Missile Crisis, he resumed work directly afterward. His work in the Midwest earned him the job of district manager of fertilizers in California with Chevron.
 In 1975, Hicks left Chevron to pursue another project. He co-founded Western Ag Supply in Anaheim, California. After seven years, he again set out to create a new company, this time founding Jim Hicks and Company in Brea, California, where he continues to serve as CEO. Jim Hicks and Company distributes commercial fertilizers to the western United States and Mexico. The business is located in Arizona, where the manufacturing plant and liquid terminals are located, as well as California and New Mexico, where other liquid terminals are located. In 30 years, Hicks has grown his company from a one-employee operation to a business that sells more than 100,000 tons of fertilizer annually.
 Although he has experienced a tremendous amount of success, Hicks has never forgotten his humble beginnings and the university that propelled him toward his career in agriculture. He began giving back to Purdue with a single endowment scholarship, but was so impressed with the first recipient that he now supports four scholarships for students in agricultural economics or agribusiness at Purdue University. For the 2012-13 academic year, 40 undergraduate students are supported by Hicks' contributions, and Purdue matches with scholarships totaling $4,500 each. These students are referred to as Hicks Scholars and are chosen as recipients for their leadership and academic qualities and achievements.
 When visiting Purdue, Hicks is always eager to speak with undergraduates in the College of Agriculture about the future of the agriculture business and how they can work to make it successful. He enjoys serving as a mentor for students and providing them with insight and experience in the field of agriculture. He is an inspiration to Purdue students and faculty alike, and as a life member of the President's Council at Purdue, he is able to influence the entire university. While Hicks has been a staunch supporter of Purdue, he also is passionate about education in California. For more than 20 years he has supported the California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom, and serves as a member of the organization's board of directors. He also serves on the board of the National Philanthropy Council of the Pacific Legal Foundation. Hicks and his wife, Neta, have also extended their philanthropy to California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly). Generations of agricultural leaders will count Jim Hicks among those who have contributed to their success.
2013LeviHuffmanLafayetteINLevi Huffman
Levi Huffman is committed to serving his community and the agricultural profession, both locally and at the state, national and international levels through service to various industry organizations and Purdue University. Huffman and his wife Norma began farming in 1972 with Norma's father, Ralph Wise. After renting land and trading labor for the use of machinery, Huffman invested in his own land and machinery and has since grown his family farm into a thriving operation. Huffman-Hawbaker Farms is operated by Huffman, his wife, their two children and their spouses. On 3,000 acres near Buck Creek, Indiana, the family grows corn, soybeans, wheat, processing tomatoes, peppers, gourds and swine in a farrow-to-finish operation. Tomatoes are grown for Red Gold. The specialty crops were added to the farming operation in order to provide opportunities for their children and their spouses to join the family farm business.
 Huffman operates the farm based on four specific goals: produce quality agricultural products while utilizing wisely their resource base; preserve the family farm entity while meeting the needs of each family; offer a helping hand to others where needed; and maintain a sense of community responsibility while being governed by good Christian principles. Locally, Huffman is involved in many organizations. He is a member of the Tippecanoe County Pork Producers and the Tippecanoe County Extension Advisory Board, where he served as president from 2005-07. He is also a member of the Prophetstown Living Historical Farm Planning Committee.
At the state level, he serves on the board of directors for both the Indiana Soybean Alliance and Indiana Pork. He is also a member of Purdue's Farm Policy Study Group and served on the advisory council for the North Central Management Education Center from 2001-06. Huffman was also a member of the Indiana Certified Livestock Producer advisory group that developed a voluntary certification program for the state's producers.
 Huffman hosted the Indiana Farm Management Tour in 2000 and has spoken to numerous farm management classes at Purdue. He has also done significant work for the Center for Food and Agricultural Business (CAB) and since 2010 has served on its advisory council. In 2009, he helped CAB design an educational program for agribusiness professionals as a way for them to understand the decisions that a farmer makes daily. As a means of instruction, Huffman provided these professionals with details about how he runs his farming operation, a comparison and contrast of his farm with others, and a 10-page document about the decisions, strategies, and philosophies of his farm. Huffman also volunteered his services to the organization as "farmer faculty," traveling to Purdue's campus to answer questions from a panel and participating in an extensive interview at his farm. He has taught this program six times with much success. In addition to Huffman's work with CAB, he has spoken to numerous classes in the Department of Agricultural Economics, and the family has hosted departmental guests, including international delegations, for tours of their farming operation.
 Huffman says sharing his knowledge with the agriculture community is not a burden for him, but a fun way for him to give back. He has been honored by the Tippecanoe County Extension Service for Outstanding Leadership and Service. In 2006, he and Norma received the APEX Award from the Department of Agricultural Economics for their service to the department.
2013WayneEmighKnoxINWayne Emigh
Turning a good thing into a great thing has never been a struggle for Wayne Emigh. His passion for his family farm, Maple Home Farms, helped him expand the livestock and field crop farm run by his parents, even introducing horticulture, beekeeping, and forage crops to the already sizable farm. Emigh's parents bought the farm during the Great Depression, but despite the tough economic times, were able to pay the mortgage and keep the Starke County farm running. When Wayne returned from military service, he worked with his parents to make the farm more profitable and up-to-date. In 1948, he graduated from Purdue's Winter Course in Agriculture, where he was a recipient of the Scholarship Award. Back home on the farm, Emigh added a Polled Hereford herd and increased the Duroc swine herd, and also began growing peppermint, spearmint, and Emerald crown vetch. His efforts to modernize the farm brought tractors instead of horses to the fields and electricity to the barns and farmhouse. While bringing his family farm into the modern era, Emigh never compromised the integrity of the original farm, and was awarded the Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana's John Arnold Award for rural preservation of historic structures in 2007.
 If anyone is an advocate for Starke County, it is Emigh. In 1962, he assisted with the organization of the Starke County Soil and Water Conservation District by holding conservation field days for no-till, minimum and conservation tillage test plots. When the mapping of Starke County soils occurred, the First Acre Ceremony was held on the Emigh farm. Emigh served on the State SWCD Board and, in 2012, was named a River Friendly Farmer by the Indiana Association of Conservation Districts. Emigh was also a member of the Starke County Co-op Board of Directors for 23 years. During that time, he served as president, vice president, and secretary, helping build the Starke County Farm Bureau Co-op into a thriving, self-supporting business benefitting local farmers. In 2006, the Indiana Association of Fairs, Festivals and Events inducted Emigh into its Hall of Fame from Region 1 for his work on the Starke County Fair Board, which he has served since 1994 as treasurer. Emigh's involvement in the Starke County 4-H program is long-standing, beginning in in 1958 as an original member of the 4-H Council. For many years, he was head of the trophy committee, and continues to help in this area. The 10-year 4-H member has volunteered as a 4-H leader for 64 years, holding electric project workshops and serving as superintendent of the electric project in Starke County.
 Emigh has contributed to the promotion of agricultural education through many programs. He has provided a hen and eggs to elementary school classrooms, offered his farm as a site for field trips, and worked at field days for fourth-grade students to learn about soil and water conservation. An amateur beekeeper and member of the Michiana Beekeepers Association, he invites those who are interested in beekeeping to visit his apiary, helps them set up beehives at their own homes, and assists them in harvesting of honey and care of bees. Electricity is a passion for Emigh, and he has shared that passion with both 4-Hers and students at St. Ann's Catholic School, by teaching them the basics of electricity, electrical safety, and basic home electric repair.
As a 10-year member of Indiana Rural Youth, Emigh has held the offices of county president and vice president, and District 1 president, helping develop programs to support the organization and its members. In 1959, he assisted with organizing the staff and gathering statistics to support programs benefitting American agriculture as an Agricultural Census crew leader. Emigh also served as president and vice president of the Starke County chapter of the Purdue Ag Alumni Association and assisted with the Latta Games ag quiz bowl program for youth at the Starke County 4-H Fair, wiring a buzzer answer system for the program. Emigh is also a long-time member of Indiana Farm Bureau and has served in many volunteer and leadership roles. He was both township and county president, has chaired numerous county committees, and has been a delegate from Starke County to the state convention.
2013JohnN. ButtsSt. JohnINJohn Butts
Through his dedication to innovation in the field of food science, John Butts has worked to help make Land O' Frost the third largest brand of sliced lunchmeat in the United States. Butts received his B.S. in Agriculture and M.S. in Food Science from Kansas State University. In 1974, he graduated with his Ph.D. in Food Science from Purdue University, where he was honored with the Outstanding Food Science Award for the inaugural food science class. After graduation, Butts immediately began working at Land O' Frost Inc. as the director of research and is now the vice president for research at the company.
 Through his projects and programs, Butts has been a direct contributor to the growth of Land O' Frost as a company. One of these products was the retort pouch, which Butts was responsible for developing, improving, and assessing quality assurance. He also worked with a Japanese food company as host and liaison for technical exchange. Butts also worked on commercialization of a retortable, peelable and microwavable entree tray and the development of a proprietary sealing method to eliminate flange contamination as a critical factor for the hermetically sealed trays.
 For 10 years, from 1991 to 2001, Butts provided technical and management support to the largest beef processing plant in Uruguay — Frigorifico Canelones. He was instrumental in creating food safety programs that would allow the company to export food to the U.S., European Union, and Japan. Butts is passionate about reducing pathogens in cooked processed meats, and has developed investigative tools that enable plants to identify and control growth niches, and has used technology to minimize the transfer to and within high-risk areas. Now, Butts is working to develop sanitation process control methods and procedures.
 As a founding member of a special poultry research committee in the 1970s, Butts has played a key role in getting approval for the use of sodium nitrite in poultry products. However, he did not stop there. He also worked to secure approval for the use of sodium nitrite in red meats, as well, through fundraising and research. Butts was awarded the 2008 Meat Processing Award from the American Meat Science Association for his work in the meat industry. He is a member of the Institute of Food Technologies, American Society for Quality, Poultry Science Association, American Meat Science Association, Institute of Packaging Professionals, and International Association of Food Protection.
 As a 30-year member of the American Meat Institute's Scientific Affairs Committee, Butts has held the position of chair from 2000 to 2003. During this time, he has helped to bring the meat industry back from a serious outbreak of environmental pathogens and regain sanitation approval. Butts has also served on the American Meat Institute Board of Directors for 15 years, where he championed the policy that food safety is not a competitive issue. This policy has led to further knowledge of E. coli and other pathogens potentially present in ground beef and processed meats. Butts has the ability to share his knowledge with others in a way that is easy to understand. He has given numerous presentations on food safety and helped to develop programs for the AMI Listeria Intervention and Control Workshops, which have been shared with more than 1,000 people in the meat industry. His long-term efforts on behalf of the meat industry have not gone unnoticed. In 2005, he received the Food Safety Leadership Award from NSF International, followed by the Food Safety Magazine’s Distinguished Service Award in 2006. In 2009, Butts was awarded the prestigious Scientific Achievement Award from the American Meat Institute Foundation, which was presented to him at the Annual Convention of the American Meat Institute.
2013R. LeonCroweGreensburgINLeon Crowe
Not many educators are as passionate or as beloved as Leon Crowe. Crowe taught high school agriculture and business for 40 years and influenced the lives of hundreds of students. He graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in 1965 and a M.S. in 1974. He worked his way through school while also supporting his family. After earning his undergraduate degree, Crowe began his teaching career at Clarksburg High School, where he remained for two years. In 1967, Crowe began teaching at North Decatur High School, a position he held until his retirement in 2005.
 An entire wall at North Decatur High School is devoted to the display of pictures and awards won by FFA students that Crowe taught and coached. During his time as FFA advisor, the students at North Decatur traveled to 30 national conventions. Two of his students became state FFA Stars (the top FFA member in Indiana), and three became National Proficiency finalists. Crowe also advised a National Proficiency winner and a state FFA officer. Not only did he spend time advising FFA students, but also served as state fruit sales coordinator for state FFA activities for 31 years, raising over $1 million. His other contributions to the Indiana FFA program include serving as chair of the Indiana FFA Degree Selection Committee and hosting Indiana state FFA officer training sessions.
 In the 1970s Leon Crowe devoted even more of his talent for teaching when he began instructing veterans as part of the GI Bill. These GI veterans' classes continued for seven years, meeting three nights a week for four hours each night. Throughout the course of these classes, Crowe provided additional education and benefits to more than 80 United States veterans. He also worked with Purdue as a cooperating teacher, helping many become agriculture teachers.
 Crowe has also held many leadership roles within education. For 40 years, he has held membership in the Indiana Association of Agricultural Educators (IAAE). In those 40 years, he served two terms as president. His second term as president occurred when the organization was in crisis, and his leadership was instrumental in helping the organization navigate a precarious situation. He was honored with the Outstanding Service Award from the National Association of Agriculture Educators, a prestigious and elite award presented to only six individuals in the United States. Crowe has also served on national committees, the Indiana Vocational Association, and as a presenter at national and regional conferences.
 Those who know Leon Crowe speak of his great energy and enthusiasm. As an advisor, he had faith in his students and worked patiently with them until they improved and accomplished their goals. He has been a long-time advocate of community service and has served Decatur County through his work with many community organizations, as both member and leader. He served as president of numerous community organizations, including the Decatur County Fair, Greensburg Optimist Club, Lake Santee Property Owners Association (four years), Decatur County Education Association and the Board of Realtors. Crowe's positive influence on the life of Decatur County is indeed widespread.
 A passionate teacher, Crowe led many students to become successful individuals. Upon his retirement in 2005, he chose a former student to be his successor as agriculture teacher at North Decatur High School. His students remember him for the impact he had on their lives, and his leadership throughout his community continues to inspire others and benefit every organization he touches.
2013FayteBrewerLafayetteINFayte Brewer
Fayte Brewer was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, grew up in western Kentucky and ultimately made his mark in agriculture across the globe. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving with the 173rd Airborne Brigade, including two tours of duty in Vietnam. After discharge, Brewer earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees from Murray State University, and completed his Ph.D. in agronomy from the University of Arkansas.
For 13 years, Brewer worked for Pioneer Hi-Bred International in Italy, Austria, Bulgaria, Spain, Portugal, and South Africa. At Pioneer, Brewer's areas of responsibility were wide-ranging, including starting new seed businesses, sales, marketing, training, quality control, research, finance, production, and administration.
Following his service with Pioneer, Brewer taught farm management, agricultural economics, and agricultural marketing as an associate professor at Berea College in Kentucky. In addition to his teaching duties, he also managed the college farm.
In 2003, Brewer became president and CEO of the Agricultural Alumni Seed Improvement Association Inc. He assumed leadership of the company at a time when it had $6 million of debt and significant inventory problems. By the time of his retirement in November 2012, the debt had been eliminated and equity had increased by more than 500 percent. He led the company to nine consecutive years of profitability, the longest period of sustained profits in the company's history. During his tenure, popcorn sales increased, investments were made in seed production and conditioning capacity, and Purdue-developed small grains were commercialized. He also led the efforts to move the company from a traditional foundation seed company marketing new hybrids and varieties to one that markets Purdue-developed traits. The company continues to be a leading producer of popcorn genetics worldwide.
As a result of his success in turning the business around, the Agricultural Alumni Seed Improvement Association has been able to endow undergraduate scholarships, provide financial support for graduate student fellowships in plant breeding and genetics, and provide other research funding support for faculty in the College of Agriculture at Purdue. Brewer developed a special relationship with the Area 9 Purdue Ag Alumni golf outing, which supports scholarships for Purdue Agriculture students studying abroad. Through increased sponsorships, he helped the event to more than double its giving level to these programs.
Brewer was recognized for his outstanding leadership of the company, and the resulting impact on Purdue Agriculture programs, at his retirement in November 2012. He was presented the Certificate of Distinction by President Roger Hadley at his retirement reception. Brewer passed away on December 25, 2012.
2012J.WilliamUhrigWest LafayetteINBill Uhrig
J. William “Bill” Uhrig retired in 2000 as Professor of Agricultural Economics at Purdue University. Uhrig was raised on a diversified grain and livestock farm in Raymond, IL and earned his B.S. in General Agriculture in 1954 from Iowa State University, where he was enrolled in U.S. Air Force ROTC and served in Air Force Reserves. Upon graduation, Uhrig entered active duty, earned his pilot’s wings and attained the rank of 1st Lieutenant before completing his military service in 1957. He returned to his family farm as a partner until the early 1960s when he returned to Iowa State for additional training in farm marketing, earning his Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics in 1965. Uhrig joined the Iowa State faculty as an Extension economist. After a one-year leave to serve with the Farmers Grain Dealers Association of Iowa, Uhrig joined the Purdue faculty in 1967 as an associate professor and Extension economist, and made his mark over a 33-year career as an educator and grain marketing economist. During his Purdue career, he worked a year in 1975 as a Research Associate with Cook Industries Inc. at Memphis, TN, and for six months in 1990 with Wharton Economic Forecasting Associates at Bala Cynwyd, PA.
Uhrig’s career was marked by a number of innovations in educational program delivery. He was the co-developer of Purdue’s Top Farmer Crop Workshop, and organized Purdue's schools for: Agricultural Banking, Farm Income Tax and Marketing on IHETS TV. Uhrig developed a farm marketing video series which was offered via closed circuit television, one of the first such offerings by an agricultural economics department in the U. S., an innovation that helped him leverage his time and meet the increasing demand for his programs. He developed AGEC 420, the undergraduate Grain Marketing course, which he taught for 20 years, often with enrollment of over 150, touching thousands of students. He served as major professor for 15 graduate students, and served on numerous graduate committees.
Uhrig was an active member of the American Agricultural Economics Association, and helped organize the Outlook section at the Association’s annual meeting, in addition to making numerous presentations at those meetings over the years. Uhrig served on the North Central Region Extension Marketing Committee. He was a frequent, invited presenter at key conferences across the nation including numerous presentations at USDA’s annual Agricultural Outlook conference in Washington, DC, and the North Central Conference on Applied Commodity Price Analysis, Forecasting, and Market Risk Management. Uhrig routinely sought ways to make outlook information more accessible and, as a result, helped launch outlook programs at the Farm Progress Show and at Ohio’s Farm Science Review. He wrote extensively on outlook and risk management for farm media publications such as Prairie Farmer, Farm Journal, Farm Futures, Successful Farming and Agri-Finance, establishing a reputation for Purdue as a go-to source for information on these topics.
He has been an active member of the St. Thomas Aquinas Center at Purdue since joining the faculty in 1967, and has served as a board member, lector and greeter. He coordinates a major fundraiser each year for the Center on behalf of the men of St. Thomas Aquinas.
Uhrig has been recognized with a number of honors for his contributions. The American Agricultural Economics Association presented him with its Professional Excellence Award (1982) and its Premier Forecaster Award for Crop Production and Prices (1989-1990 and 1994-1995). In 1982 he received the Senior Recognition Award from the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Specialists Association (PUCESA). USDA awarded him its Superior Service Award in 1988 as a member of Purdue’s Drought Response Team. In 1996, Indiana Governor Evan Bayh named him a Sagamore of the Wabash.
2012S.RichardTolmanBallwinMORick Tolman
S. Richard “Rick” Tolman is Chief Executive Officer of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), St. Louis, MO. Tolman graduated in 1976 from Brigham Young University with a B.S. in Agricultural Economics. In 1978, he earned his M.S. in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University. As a graduate research assistant at Purdue University, he assisted in the analysis and reporting of selected research projects sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Prior to joining NCGA in September, 2010, Tolman served for nine years as the Executive Director of the U.S. Grains Council (USGC), a non-profit organization that promotes the use of U.S. barley, corn, sorghum and related products worldwide. At USGC, Tolman was responsible for the international offices and programs, including establishing long-range feed grains export targets and addressing foreign trade issues. Prior to assuming responsibility for international operations, Tolman supervised all phases of internal and external communications and membership services for the Council. Before joining the Council in 1982, Tolman was marketing planning manager for the Advanced Harvesting Systems Group at International Harvester Co., where he developed marketing and pricing strategies and guided market research. Tolman also worked as a market research analyst for the Gehl Co., a farm equipment manufacturer in West Bend, WI.
Under Tolman’s leadership, NCGA has grown in numerous ways including membership, checkoff funds, size and stature of the annual Commodity Classic, and in market opportunities for corn farmers. He led the NCGA Corn Board in its strategic plan in 2006 to call for production of 15 billion bushels of corn, 5 billion of which can be used for the production of 15 billion gallons of ethanol by 2015. This plan was instrumental in the energy legislation signed by President George W. Bush in 2007.  Tolman has worked on several fronts to bring agriculture commodity groups together to speak with a united voice. In 2007, the Commodity Classic, the combined tradeshow and convention of NCGA and the American Soybean Association, brought the National Association of Wheat Growers on board, due in large part to Tolman’s leadership. In late 2010, Tolman spearheaded the establishment of the U. S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance (USFRA), which brought together over 50 farm and ranch organizations and six major agribusiness industry partners with a mission to build consumer trust in today’s agriculture, chairing the temporary steering committee that formed the coalition. He currently chairs the CEO Advisory Committee of USFRA.
Tolman serves the agricultural industry through a number of appointments and organizations. He serves on the Board of the Waterways Council, Inc., and recently finished a term on the Executive Committee of the Field to Market Sustainability Group, an organization he helped to found. In addition, he has served on the USDA Agricultural Trade Advisory Committee for grains and oilseeds and as Chairman for the Midwest Area River Coalition. Tolman is a member of the Society of Industrial Leaders and is an expert on agriculture for the Gerson Lehrman Group Councils and the Guidepoint Global Group. He also has served as a guest researcher with the Japan Science and Technology Agency. U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Anne Veneman appointed Tolman to the USDA Agricultural Trade Advisory Committee for grains and oilseeds. Other organizations with which he has been active include: Farm and Industrial Equipment Institute, the Canadian Farm and Industrial Equipment Institute, the National Agri-Marketing Association, Agricultural Relations Council, National Barley Improvement Council and the American Agricultural Economics Association.
Tolman is active in Boy Scouts of America (BSA), currently serving as the varsity coach for BSA Team 893 in Wildwood, MO. He has served as Scout Master, Troop Committee member, Merit Badge Councilor, Institutional Representative, Cubmaster, and Cub Committee Chair. For 12 consecutive years he was an adult leader for Boy Scout summer camp. He and his three sons are all Eagle Scouts, and he has mentored many other young men to attain Eagle. Tolman is trained and certified as a volunteer Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) member for St. Louis County. Tolman is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and served for five years as the ecclesiastical head of his local congregation as Bishop, Franklin Ward. His focus as Bishop was on youth and youth counseling.
In 2008 Tolman was recognized by the National Agri-Marketing Association with its highest honor, Agribusiness Leader of the Year. In 2011 BBI International, producer of globally recognized bioenergy events and trade magazines, presented Tolman with its High Octane Award in recognition of his industry leadership and effective advocacy of ethanol and his ongoing work and commitment on behalf of the ethanol industry.
2012HaroldL. ThompsonDanvilleINHarold Thompson
A native of Paoli, Harold Thompson received his B.S. in Agricultural Education from Purdue University in 1971 and subsequently earned 30 hours of graduate credit in agricultural education, also from Purdue. Thompson’s career spanned almost 40 years with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS, formerly known as the Soil Conservation Service). The first 18 years of his career was spent providing technical assistance to producers in soil and water conservation systems mostly in southwest Indiana. For 19 years, until his retirement in 2007, Thompson served on the Indiana NRCS Leadership Team in various Assistant State Conservationist positions.
While serving in county level positions, Thompson became known for his ability to coordinate the resources of NRCS with other state and local agencies, including those in neighboring states, to complete successful conservation projects in watershed protection, flood prevention and to protect the highly erodible soils of southwest Indiana. He led a team that completed approximately 25 Rural Abandoned Mine Projects, including a $300,000 project in the city of Boonville that was a collaboration of personnel from the city, a hospital, a school board, the SWCD, and state and federal agencies, and which was named National Rural Abandoned Mine Project of the Year in 1990. During the implementation of the 1985 Farm Bill, Thompson developed and implemented procedures, including group planning activities for farmers and the Soil and Water Action Team (SWAT), that expedited the determinations of Highly Erodible Land (HEL) on more than 114,000 tracts covering over two million acres of HEL in Indiana, helping farmers know the status of their land in meeting Farm Bill requirements. He earned a special achievement award for this effort. As a field employee of NRCS, Thompson received Outstanding Performance Awards three times (1981, 1984 and 1988) and a Special Act Award (1985). As a member of the NRCS Leadership Team, he was actively involved in review of national policy and procedures and he advocated for local leadership of soil and water conservation efforts. As a result of his efforts, all watershed coordinators in the state have the opportunity to take an advanced facilitator course taught by NRCS, and it was his leadership that led to the formation of the White River Resource Conservation and Development Council in 2001 and he insured NRCS staff support of the council’s grassroots organization. He provided NRCS leadership to the 1994 USDA Reorganization Act and the implementation of the 1996 Farm Bill. In his leadership role, Thompson earned Outstanding Performance ratings (1991, 2006), Sustained Superior Performance Awards (2003, 2005) and Special Act Awards (1998 and 1999).
Thompson has served the conservation profession in many roles. A 42-year member of the Hoosier Chapter of the Soil and Water Conservation Society, he has been a director (six years), and president (1998), as well as chair of the Chapter Membership, Soil and Water Resources and Chapter Development committees. He chaired the Society’s international meeting in 2002 which brought more than 800 conservationists to Indiana. In 1999 he was NRCS’s representative on the planning committee for the 10th Annual International Soil Conservation Organization Conference and planned and conducted tours to introduce participants to natural resource management problems in the US Corn Belt. He is a longtime member and past-president of the Indiana Forage Council. In retirement he works as the Agricultural Liaison for the Big Walnut and Eagle Creek Watershed projects, and has planted nearly 100 oak trees at Camp Camby, a church camp where he had volunteered, to help restore the floodplain forest.
In his community, Thompson has served for 30 years as a volunteer, certified Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) and for over 15 years has been the “camp nurse” for the Wayne Township 4-H Camp. He has served on the Wayne Township (Marion County) 4-H Advisory Board (since 1995, president for three terms); Marion County 4-H and Agricultural Fair Board (two terms); and since 1997 he has been an Earth Team volunteer with the Hoosier Heartland Resource Conservation and Development Council where he gave over 150 hours of volunteer service in 2007. Thompson also volunteers for the Plant a Million Trees project, Rural Entrepreneur Network program, and the Angel Food project and the annual Child Safety Day through his church.
Thompson’s professional achievements have been recognized numerous times from NRCS, as cited previously. In 2009, the Soil and Water Conservation Society recognized his long-term effective service to the Society and to soil and water conservation by honoring him as one of three persons worldwide elected a Fellow of the Society.
2012RolfO.PetersonHoughtonMIRolf Peterson
Rolf Peterson is Professor in the School of Forestry and Wood Products at Michigan Technological University where in 2009 he was named as the Robbins Endowed Chair in Sustainable Management of the Environment. Peterson received his B. A. in Zoology from the University of Minnesota, Duluth, in 1970, and in 1974 he earned his Ph.D. in Wildlife Ecology from Purdue University. He has spent his entire career at Michigan Technological University (MTU) where he has established himself as a world-renowned authority on wolf biology and the predator-prey relationship of wolves and moose.
Peterson’s connection to Purdue began when he read a National Geographic article by Drs. David Mech and Durward Allen outlining their research at Isle Royale National Park in Michigan that began in 1958. While in graduate school at Purdue, Peterson refocused the study back to its original subjects: wolves and moose. During his first year on the faculty at MTU, Dr. Allen turned the study over to him, and 37 years later Peterson remains devoted to studying the Isle Royale ecosystem and is still sharing leadership of the wolf study. Now in its 55th year, the study is the longest continuous predator-prey research ever conducted. It is the baseline for virtually all wolf-moose research in the world, and is the template for the long term study now being conducted on the reintroduced wolf population in Yellowstone National Park. Peterson and his wife conduct summer field work from May to October, and every winter Peterson spends seven weeks isolated in a cabin at Isle Royale to conduct the winter field work. Peterson has been responsible for many remarkable discoveries, including the documentation of wolves’ prey selection behavior that favors old or weak prey and showing how climactic variability has a critical role in regulating wolf-prey dynamics. One nominator said, “If you want to know what everyone else will be studying 10 or 20 years from now, I suggest taking a close look at what Rolf Peterson is doing now.”
Since 1988 Peterson has been the expedition leader for more than Earthwatch volunteers studying the moose and wolves of Isle Royale. Since 1993 he has been a member and secretary of the board of directors of the International Wolf Center (Minnesota), as well as chair of the Houghton School Forest Planning Committee. In 1996 he was appointed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to be the team leader for the Recovery Team for the Eastern Gray Wolf, a position he still holds. He is a member of The Wildlife Society, the American Society of Mammalogists and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He has published nine books and over 100 publications in refereed journals. Peterson has collaborated with numerous universities, state and federal agencies, including the National Park Service and the USDA Forest Service, and other organizations, including the International Wolf Center, the Timber Wolf Alliance, the Isle Royale Institute, Isle Royal Natural History Association and the Great Lakes Research and Education Center and Discovery World in Milwaukee.
Peterson’s work has been highlighted in nationally recognized publications, including National Geographic, National Wildlife, Audubon, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. In addition to his scholarly publications, he has had 72 technical articles published in Science, Nature and 18 other scientific journals.
His numerous awards include: Distinguished Alumni Award, University of Minnesota-Duluth (2004); Founders Award, Isle Royale Institute (2002); Best Reporting Award, Minnesota Magazine and Publications Association (1999); Research Award, Michigan Technological University (1991); Distinguished Moose Biologist, 26th North American Moose Conference (1990); Gulf Oil Conservation Award (one of ten recognized nationally, 1982).
2012GeorgeF.PatrickWest LafayetteINGeorge Patrick
George Patrick graduated from Cornell University in 1964 with a B.S. in Agricultural Economics. He then came to Purdue University for graduate school and, essentially, never left. Patrick earned both his M.S. and Ph.D. from Purdue in Agricultural Economics in 1966 and 1970, respectively. While earning his doctorate, he worked as a research associate in International Programs in Agriculture. Following graduation, he spent three years as project specialist for the Ford Foundation’s work in Brazil. In 1973 he joined the faculty of the Department of Agricultural Economics, where he still serves as Professor.
Patrick’s career has had three major areas of impact. First, his applied research and Extension education program on risk management. He has been Purdue’s “go to” person for Extension programs on federal crop insurance for many years. His program “Risk Management in Your County” is grounded in solid research, and he mentors junior faculty to obtain grants to support risk management education.
Second, Patrick is a leader in tax education in Indiana and the nation with an emphasis on tax issues. He is THE “tax man” for Purdue University, and has directed the Purdue Income Tax School since 1976. His work has national implications, too, with materials being shared among 25 states and some 28,000 tax professionals through the Land Grant University Tax Education Foundation, Inc. (LGUTEF) and the 700-page tax workbook it produces each year with significant writing and other input from Patrick. It is estimated that the professionals who use this workbook prepare more than three million tax returns annually. In Indiana, his annual school consists of 11 two-day sessions that are attended by more than 1,100 tax professionals who file over 300,000 tax returns annually in the state. He has been a leader in preparing educational materials for these preparers on income types and tax law that is specific to agriculture. More than 57,000 individual income tax returns filed by Indiana residents include farm income. Patrick’s education programs impact the vast majority of those returns through his tax education programs or preparers as well as for farmers who prepare their own returns. In addition to his tax school, Patrick hosts a year-end, two hour program via webcast each December that focuses on recent tax law changes and provides farmers with the opportunity to ask individual questions.
Third, Patrick’s leadership in Extension at the departmental, regional and national levels has contributed to a more effective and efficient agricultural system. He was a founding Director of the American Agricultural Economics Association (AAEA) Extension Section and later served as its president. He also chaired AAEA’s Extension Committee from 1998-2000 and he organized an international conference on the role of Extension in the 21st century. Since 1981 Patrick has served on the National Farm Income Advisory Committee which works with the IRS to improve Publication 225, The Farmer’s Tax Guide and meets with the staff of the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation. He served as the Committee’s chair from 1993-2000. He has served on the North Central Farm Management Extension Committee since 1998 and from 1992 to 1995 he served as its secretary, vice chair and chair. He is a founding director of the non-profit Land Grant University Tax Education Foundation, Inc. (LGUTEF) and served as president of the board from 2001-2008. From 2002 through 2010, Patrick served as the Extension Coordinator for Purdue’s Agricultural Economics Department. His additional professional service activities include the Task Force to Provide Guidelines for Commodity Wage Payments from 1993-94, serving at the request of U.S. Senator Richard Lugar. From 1998-2001 he served on Cornell University’s W. I. Myers Agricultural Finance and Management Advisory Council.
Patrick’s work has had international impact through his appointments with the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil (Visiting Professor, 1974 and 1975), the Federal University of Vicosa, Brazil (Visiting Professor, 1983), and the University of Melbourne (Visiting Research Fellow, 1985).
Patrick is a member of a number of community organizations, including the Dayton Optimist Club. He is a member of Central Presbyterian Church, where he has served as a Trustee and as an Elder and has helped the church balance its budget and expand its contribution base.
His honors include AAEA’s Quality of Communication Award (1987), AAEA Distinguished Group Extension Program Award (1992 and 1999), and AAEA Distinguished Individual Extension Program Award (2004), Australian Society of Agricultural Economics Best Journal Article (1988), USDA Unit Award for Superior Service as part of Purdue’s response to the 1988 drought, and the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Specialists’ Association (PUCESA) Career Award (2002).
2012HubertR.JohnsonFrankfortINHub Johnson
Hubert “Hub” Johnson graduated from Purdue University in 1961 with a B.S. in Animal Sciences. A student leader, he was a varsity basketball player and vice president of the Hoof and Horn Club. In 1965 he received his M.S. from Purdue, also in Animal Sciences, and during his graduate studies was an instructor for meats classes and became Purdue’s first meats lab manager. After working as a meats instructor at Colorado State University and in the processed meats industry, he returned to Purdue and earned his PhD. in 1975. He then joined Purdue’s faculty for two years in the area of meat science teaching, research and extension. His 50-year career has included positions with a number of processors, service as a USDA staff officer and many years as a consultant to the meats processing industry. His expertise has earned him the nickname “The Ham Doctor.” Johnson has had a major impact with the companies and clients he served, and also in academia and government where he played a major role in transforming regulatory policy as it affects the meat industry. One nominator said of him, “I have yet to meet another person who understood so many different meat processing procedures.” His professional knowledge and expertise is matched with extraordinary management and people skills, acknowledged many times by his various nominators as the total skill package that made him their most valued consultant.
Johnson’s unique skill package resulted in his often being sought after and hired as a “fixer” for a process or a meat processing plant. As a result, his experience includes positions in general management, production management and quality management with many companies, including: Dinner Bell Foods, Defiance, OH (1966-69); Hygrade Food Products, Livonia, MI (1969-73 and 1980-82); OhSe Foods, Topkea, KS (1973 and 1994-96); Bil-Mar Foods, Zeeland, MI (1978-80); Cook Family Foods, Detroit, MI (1982-83); Wilson Foods, Monmouth, IL and Logansport, IN (1985-94); ABC Research, Gainesville, FL (1997); American Foods, Mitchell, SD (1997-99); and Ohio Packing Company, Columbus, OH (1999-2000). After his stint on the Purdue faculty, in 1977 he launched his own company, H. B. Ham, Inc. in Rossville, IN and his first year sales exceeded one million pounds. As a consultant in food processing management and technology, food safety, HACCP, TQC, TQM and management training, his clients have included dozens of companies, including high profile industry leaders Allied Mills, Armour-Swift-Eckrich, ConAgra, Emge Foods, Farmland Foods, Purina Mills and Marsh Supermarkets.
Johnson has served his profession through the American Meat Science Association where he was a member of the Committees for Continuing Education (1965), Food Engineering (1974-75) and Rules for Intercollegiate Meat Judging Coaches Association (1976-77) and through the American Meat Institute as a member of its Processed Meats Committee (1969-70). He served on the Carcass Evaluation Committee of the AK-SAR-BEN 4-H Livestock Exposition in 1976. He has served as treasurer of the Indiana Food Processors Association and on the board of directors of the Indiana Meat Processors Association. He has authored 10 peer-reviewed publications, three Extension publications and 112 abstracts, and he has given numerous invited presentations for university and industry seminars and conferences.
Johnson is a community servant leader as well. While at Purdue he was an advisor to Farmhouse Fraternity and a Faculty Fellow at Cary Quad. He has served on the Executive Board of the Sagamore Council of the Boy Scouts of America. Johnson has been a 4-H leader, Little League Baseball manager, volunteer baseball umpire and a member of the McCutcheon High School booster club. He is a member of the Flora United Methodist Church where he has served on the Administrative Board, Board of Trustees, as Liturgist, and chairman of the Pastor-Parish Committee. He has also served as a foodservice volunteer for the church camp for four weeks each year.
Johnson’s honors and awards include membership in Alpha Zeta and Sigma Xi. In 1965-66 he was named Colorado State University’s Outstanding Teacher in Animal Science. He was also named an Honorary Commissioner of Agriculture for the State of Indiana.
2012SusanA. HayhurstTerre HauteINSusan A. Hayhurst
Susan Hayhurst grew up in West Lafayette and graduated with a B.S. from Purdue University in 1982, majoring in Child Development and minoring in Journalism. s After pursuing a career in communications in Indianapolis, she returned to West Lafayette and worked for the Purdue Alumni Association. In 1989 she joined her new husband in his family farming operation in Vigo County and continued her career in the Public Relations Department of St. Mary of the Woods College. Since 1992 she has been a freelance writer for a number of agricultural publications and has channeled her communications talent and her passion for agriculture into providing advocacy and leadership to many agricultural and community organizations.
Hayhurst Farms consists of 1200 acres of crops and a purebred Polled Hereford cow-calf operation. Hayhurst works with her husband Terry to provide support to all of the farm business operations. She is a regular contributor to Indiana Prairie Farmer with her column “Hayhurst Haylofts” and articles on other special topics, and for more than ten years has been a panelist for the magazine’s Young Farmer Forum column. For three years, Hayhurst has written features on people from Vigo and surrounding counties who were participating in the Indiana State Fair for the Terre Haute Tribune-Star. Her work has also appeared in Farm World, AAA Hoosier Home & Away, and My Indiana Home, the new magazine of Indiana Farm Bureau targeted to non-farm insurance customer members. In addition to her writing, she speaks to numerous community organizations about her life on the farm, and has been a presenter at the Midwest Women in Ag Conference.
Hayhurst has been a tireless volunteer for agricultural organizations at the local, state and national levels. She served the Vigo County Farm Bureau as a director for nine years, and as county communication director for ten years. At the state level, she has volunteered for the Indiana Beef Cattle Association’s Cattlemen’s Club food concession stand at the Indiana State Fair, and she has served Indiana Farm Bureau on the Young Farmer Committee (two years) and on the Women’s Leadership Advisory Committee (2009-2011). She served as president of the Indiana Hereford Women in 2009, and as a volunteer for the Indiana Hereford Association, she served on the fundraising committee for the 2010 National Junior Hereford Show that was held in Indiana. In 2010 she was elected to a 4-year term as a Director of the National Hereford Women and is currently a member of that organization’s By-Laws and Newsletter committees.
Hayhurst also has an extensive record of community service. She has served the YWCA of Terre Haute as both director and as president. She is a member of Tri Kappa Sorority and served as Terre Haute Chapter Treasurer (1995). Hayhurst organized and established both the Mothers of Pre-Schoolers (MOPS) and Moms In Touch (MIT) ministries in Terre Haute. She participated in Leadership Terre Haute (now known as Leadership Wabash Valley), and for three years provided the agricultural venue for the annual program to teach participants about the ag industry. She also served on the Wabash Valley Region Ag Advisory Committee for Ivy Tech Community College. In 1995, Terre Haute hosted the Farm Progress Show, and Hayhurst coordinated the local marketing and advertising campaign for the show programs. In 2001 she co-authored the book, Terre Haute: The Crossroads of America, commissioned by the Greater Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce. Since 2007 she has served as the Chair for the annual Indiana Prairie Farmer/CountryMark Essay Contest for Indiana youth. Hayhurst has served on the Indiana State Fair Commission since 2005 and is presently a member of the Fundraising Committee for the Pepsi Coliseum Renovation.
2012PhillipE.BoringNew PalestineINPhillip E. Boring photo
A native of Shelby County, IN, Phillip Boring received a B.S. degree in General Agriculture from Purdue University in 1961. Following graduation, he served in the U. S. Army. He returned home in December of 1962 and joined his father in the family farming operation, a portion of which has been continuously owned by the family since 1852. Today he is the president of Boring Farms, Inc. and LOI Farms, Inc. Boring grew the farm from 550 acres of crops and a 50-sow operation that marketed about 500 hogs per year to 3100 crop acres and a hog operation that during its peak in the 1990s consisted of 500 sows and marketed 8,000 to 10,000 hogs per year.
Boring has been an innovator with his farming operations. His was one of the earliest family farms in Indiana to incorporate. He has innovated with new and non-traditional crops such as cucumbers and canola, as well as tomatoes and popcorn, which he is still growing along with corn, soybeans and wheat. Boring has been invited to serve on numerous national panels and symposia boards on topics ranging from pork production to farm business transition and estate planning. 
Boring’s farm operation has played a pivotal role in his public service activities. Each year from 1997 to 2003, he and his wife Janice hosted senior diplomats from the United States State Department for a farm stay of several days during their stateside training to learn about agricultural production and policy. The Borings’ have hosted many state and national delegations on tours of their farm, as well as international farmers and visitors, including Bernard Vernier-Paillez, France’s Ambassador to the United States. Their farm hosted Farm Fest in 1994 and was featured on the Indiana Farm Management Tour in 1978.
Boring has been both a member and a leader in numerous agricultural organizations, including: Indiana Young Farmers Association (1960-1980); Shelby County Pork Producers Association (member and past president, 1960s-2000); International Flying Farmers (member 1965-2000; Indiana Chapter President 1967-1969; Chair of IFF convention held in Lafayette in 1975); Indiana Farm Policy Study Group (pre 1976 – present); Shelby County Co-op (Director, 1995-present); Red Gold Grower Action Fund Board (member and past chairman, mid 1990s-2009); Indiana Farm Management Association (President, 1981; Director At-large, 1982; Member of General Planning Committee for the Farm Management Tour, 1980 and 1982).
Boring plays tenor and baritone saxophone in the Shelby County Community Band, Greenfield Community Band, Brandywine Wind Jazz Band and the Dixie Kats. These bands share their love of music at free concerts and numerous festivals, parades and other public events. He also entertains as a soloist at senior communities in Shelbyville every month. Boring’s community service has also included four years on the Shelby County Northwestern School Board (1972-1976), during which he campaigned for, and got approval for, building a new middle school and hired the architect to design the project. He also promoted and helped implement a trial period of year-round school, an innovative idea for that time. Boring has been a member of Carrollton United Methodist Church for more than 50 years, where he has taught Sunday School, served on the Board of Trustees and on numerous committees and other offices.
Boring was named a Master Farmer by Indiana Prairie Farmer magazine in 1983. He received Red Gold’s Master Grower Award in 1998 and 2001. And in 2007 the Mid-America Food Processors awarded him its Roman R. Romanowski Award for contributions and excellence in the Midwest vegetable industry.
2011JohnTrottCertificate of Distinction Winner- John Trott
John Trott is a former director of the Purdue Agricultural Centers and Assistant to the Director of the Office of Agricultural Research Programs. Before taking those positions he worked as an Extension Educator. John graduated from Purdue with a B.S. and an M.S. in agriculture.
As Director of the Purdue Agricultural centers, John developed and coordinated plans for site-specific research with departments in the College of Agriculture. He was also responsible for recruiting, hiring, and evaluating the eight farm superintendents and the general management of the farmland.  In his position as Director he improved the coordination between the Research Stations and the Extension Service to benefit Indiana agriculture.
As an Assistant to the Director of the Office of Agricultural Research Programs, he provided administrative assistance to various agricultural councils across the state. He also assisted the director in overseeing the departmental research facilities and identifying linkages between the departmental farms. He represented the Dean and the Director very well in any situation they asked him to take on.
John also impacted Indiana agriculture through his work with the Extension Service. As the Public Policy agent in St. Joseph County he coordinated and directed a program that maintained educational programs for over 40,000 participants. During his years there, over 8,500 youth participated in 4-H, making it the second largest 4-H program in the state. While working in Monroe County, John initiated the “Farmers Breakfast” where farmers met with business people to help them understand farming operations. In Marshall County he started a 4-H Community Development program to bring youth into the community decision making process.
The leadership experience John gained from his career is also shared with agricultural and community organizations. He has been president of the Agriculture/Community Development section of the Indiana Extension Agents Association, member of the Indiana 4-H Foundation Board of Directors, and led tours of Washington D.C. for Purdue’s CARET group. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of PEFCU and the Lafayette Rotary Club.
2011HomerOusleyCertificate Of Distinction Winner- Homer Ousley, Jr.
Conservation and good management practices are very important to Homer Ousley. For the past 40 years, Homer has been the crop farm manager for Creighton Brothers located in Warsaw, IN. Before becoming the crop manager, Homer was in charge of Creighton Brothers’ cow/calf operation, the largest in the state. Homer graduated with a B.S. and an M.S. from Purdue University.
As a farm manager at Creighton Brothers, Homer is in charge of 8000 acres of cropland, 700 acres of forage land, and 1200 acres of woodland. Many of the wooded acres have been planted under Homer’s guidance and suggestion. Natural resource conservation is very important to him, especially the use of grass and trees to control erosion and protect water quality. Recently, he cooperated with SWCD, NRCS, and the Nature Conservancy to install a two-stage ditch on one of the farms as a pilot water quality practice to protect the Tippecanoe River. As the farm manager, Homer has used no-till farming, crop rotation, filter strips, tree planting, and environmental enhancement to preserve the soil and waterways for future generations. Because of his attention to soil quality and balance of nutrients, the farm has seen an increase of 40 bu. per acre in corn yields and 10 bu. per acre in soybean yields. He has also used these practices on his own farm and his wife’s family farm. Also as a farm manager, Homer writes a newsletter each month that is mailed to all of the employees and owners of Creighton Brothers.
Homer is very actively involved and well respect in his community. Before Creighton Brothers sold their cow-calf herd, he was president of the Kosciusko County Cattleman’s Association and Cattleman of the Year. For his conservation work, he has been awarded the Conservation Farmer of the Year and the Master Farmer of the Year by the Kosciusko County Soil and Water Conservation District. He has been on the Warsaw School’s Ag Advisory Board and is currently a member of the Northern Tippecanoe River Water Shed Board. Homer also serves as a volunteer at the food pantry and is active in two churches, especially in the Men’s Bible study groups with each church. He and his wife can often be found visiting shut-ins or hospital patients.
2011MarkTownsendCertificate Of Distinction Winner- Mark Townsend
Mark Townsend believes in public service and exhibits that belief in everything he does. He is the manager and part owner of Townsend Farms, a 2,400 sow operation and 2,200 acre crop farm in Grant and Blackford counties. Mark graduated from Purdue with a B.S. in Agricultural Economics and went on to do graduate studies at the University of Illinois.
As many know, farming can be an unpredictable profession. Since 1979 when Mark became the manager there has been cyclical market turmoil and record low prices in the swine business. Many other Indiana hog farmers decided there were better, less challenging ways to earn a living and exited the business. However, Mark and Townsend Farms persevered to be one of the few remaining independent hog producers in Indiana. This is a testament not only to Mark’s dedication to agriculture but also to his management and leadership skills.
Along with his duties on the farm, Mark has made an effort to impact agriculture in other ways. In the 1990’s he served on the Indiana Commission for Agriculture and Rural Development. Mark was a key contributor to the development of the strategic plan for Indiana agriculture. Mark was also appointed in chairman of the state committee of the American Stabilization and Conservation Service. In this position, his personality and compassionate leadership approach  helped people work together . He built relationships with each employee in the ASCS state office that became the hallmark of his service there. He has also served on the Indiana Pork Advocacy Coalition and graduated from the third class of the Indiana Agricultural Leadership Program.
Mark has become an integral part in his community since returning from his graduate studies. He is on the For Blackford County Board of Directors, a group that serves as a catalyst for new projects to improve Blackford County. Additionally Mark has served as president of the Blackford County United Way Board of Directors and of the Grand-Blackford Mental Health Center Board of Directors. Mark has also been a member of the Purdue University Board of Trustees twice; once as a student and again in 2004. Now Mark has chosen to take on a new challenge by becoming a member of the Blackford County School Board.
2011BrianReichartCertificate Of Distinction Winner- Brian Reichart
Brian Reichart is the President and CEO of Red Gold, LLC. Red Gold is a family-owned and operated tomato processing company headquartered in Orestes, IN. Brian graduated from Culver Military Academy as a member of Black Horse Troop Lancers and from Purdue with a B.S. in Industrial Management.
Red Gold was founded by Brian’s grandfather in 1942. Brian worked at the cannery throughout high school and college before joining the staff full time as Plant Manager and Chief Engineer. When he became President and CEO, Brian took on the challenge of growing the company from a small regional and seasonal packer to a national supplier of tomato products. With Brian leading the company, Red Gold expanded into institutional food service supply and private labeling for grocery store chains across the U.S. Additionally, full-time employees grew from 170 to 1328. The physical plant expanded to three production facilities, a distribution center, a corporate office, and a trucking company.   The company now processes over 10,000 acres of tomatoes. Today Red Gold is the largest privately owned tomato-processing company in the world, distributing tomato products to all 50 states and exporting to 16 countries.
Community involvement is also important to the company and its leaders. Red Gold has partnered with the Indianapolis Colts and each time the Colts score within the 20 yard line, Red Gold donates tomatoes to Indiana food banks. Since 2008, 10,000 pounds of tomatoes were donated by Red Gold to a Hunger Task Force and 34,000 pounds of Red Gold products were donated to Gleaners. Additionally, Red Gold along with WQME sponsored a healthy cooking school for people in Madison County to help raise money for the Madison County 4-H Association.  Red Gold has also donated products to help people affected by disasters, including 9/11, Katrina, and Indiana flood victims.
On a more personal level, Brian works hard to serve the agricultural industry and his own community. He was President of the Indiana Canners Association, a member of the Board of Directors for the national Food Products Association, and was named the Mid-American Food Processors Association Man of the Year. In his community he is a member of the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, the Elks Club of Elwood, and the Alexandria Church of the Nazarene. 1994, the Elks Club in Elwood named him Citizen of the Year and in 2004 was presented with the Indiana Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year and the Outstanding Food Science Award from Purdue.
2011JoePedenCertificate of Distinction Winner- Joe Peden
Joe Peden is a farmer, a conservationist, a community leader, a teacher, and a gentleman. He earned a B.S. in Agronomy from Purdue University and has since become a USDA District Conservationist, State Agronomist, and Self-employed farmer.
Joe promotes the agricultural industry through his words and his deeds. As a soil conservationist, he educates farmers about no-till practices and building terraces and waterways. Second and third generation farmers trust that if Joe Peden says a practice is a good one, it must be. As a farmer, he promotes agriculture education by opening his farm each spring to thousands of elementary school students through the Children’s Farm Festival. This two-day event introduces children to all aspects of farming and shows them the importance it has in our lives. There are 30 stations and hands-on activities for the children to interact with animals and watch demonstrations. This event offers an opportunity for students to get out of the classroom and discover for themselves their food does not just come from the grocery store. But the Children’s Farm Festival does not just benefit elementary students; it is a community event. 250 adult volunteers, 50 to 75 high school students, even a state representative, volunteer each year to make sure the event is a success. Working at the Children’s Farm Festival gives 4-H and FFA members a sense of responsibility and shows them how important it is to educate the public about agriculture. This event is so important to the community that even in this financial climate, anonymous donors give large amounts to make sure the children get to the farm, the tractors can be fueled, there is plenty of food for the volunteers, and many other needs. Joe Peden has a love of teaching and sharing agriculture’s message that has impacted everyone from 5 to 85.
Joe’s character and leadership shine through in everything he does. He and his wife have been awarded the Prairie Farmer Master Farmer Award, Friend of Extension, Monroe County Farm Family of the Year, and the City of Bloomington, “Be More Award” for Community Service. Joe and Joyce were also awarded Indiana University’s Alpha Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa International Outstanding Partners in Education in 2007. Joe is a part of the Monroe County Farm Bureau, Monroe County Fair Board, Monroe County Soil & Water Conservation Board, and leads the Maple Leaf 4-H club. Joe has also been the secretary of the White River Co-op for more than ten years. He serves as an elder at the Maple Grove Christian Church and is the director for South Central Indiana REMC.
2011JamesVorstCertificate Of Distinction winner- James Vorst
Dr. James Vorst has served agriculture well as an undergraduate teacher and advisor at Purdue University in the Agronomy Department for forty years. During those forty years he taught Crop Production and other courses to over 10,000 students and advised 20 graduate students, preparing them for successful careers in agriculture. He earned his B.S. and M.S. from The Ohio State University and a Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska.
Jim Vorst has made a tremendous impact on the agriculture industry in Indiana. Within the classroom, his grasp of agronomic knowledge allowed him to connect agronomy with other disciplines in agriculture as well as with business and other sciences. He has the unique ability to communicate and connect with a variety of students by adjusting the content and delivery to each situation. He fights for education and defends what he feels is the best solution to benefit students in the long run. 
Jim does not believe that education stops outside the classroom. He helped lay the groundwork for the Certified Crop Advisor program, whose membership includes over 13,000 agriculturalists in the United States and Canada. The CCA program has significantly impacted crop production by increasing productivity and responsible management.  Although Jim is retired from Purdue he is leading the expansion of the CCA into Southeast Asia and soon will be working in with Argentina. NRCS has also recognized Jim’s philosophy of education and asked him to develop educational guidelines for Technical Service Providers that worked nationwide.
The recognition he has received is a testament to his dedication and talent for education. At Purdue he is listed in the Purdue Book of Great Teachers, has received the University Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award, and the Outstanding Teacher in Agronomy four times. He also has been awarded the USDA Food and Agricultural Science Excellence in Teaching Regional Award.
Along with his service to his profession, he has provided a great service to his community. Jim was on the Tippecanoe County 4-H Fair planning committee and took responsibility for the sheep show for many years. He is a member of Farm Bureau, Kiwanis, Lions Club, and the Benton Central FFA advisory board. If that isn’t enough, he is a member of St. Charles Catholic Church in Otterbein where he recently helped build all the sanctuary furniture.
2011BethArcherBeth Archer Certificate of Distinction Winner
Beth Archer has a talent for influencing people she comes in contact with. After graduating from Purdue with a B.S. in Home Economics Education, she worked as a Consumer and Family Science teacher and for the state Department of Education. In 1991 she became an employee of AgrIInstitute and was eventually promoted to her current position of Executive Director. Beth has since touched the lives of over 300 Indiana agriculturalists through her work with the Indiana Ag Leadership Program.
Beth is one of the most vocal advocates for advancing Indiana agriculture through her leadership with AgrIInstitute. Under Beth’s direction the program has grown, become financially independent, and been recognized as the premier leadership opportunity for cultivating leadership in Indiana’s agriculture industry. Participants in the Ag Leadership Program are developed to be pro-advocates of agriculture. The program uses well-developed media training so that the graduates are able to appropriately meet the challenge of explaining agricultural practices to opposition groups. She has secured grants for the program from Cenex Harvest States Foundation, Phillip Morris, Farm Credit Services Foundation, Lily Endowment, Office of Community and Rural Affairs, Pioneer Hybrid, and the Indiana Department of Rural Affairs. With Beth in charge, AgrIInstitute has been brought to a level that is both admired and envied by Ag Leadership programs across the country. Her hard work was recognized by her colleagues when she was named Leader of the year for the International Association Programs for Agriculture Leadership.
Beth’s strong advocacy for agriculture has also led her to work with other organizations within the industry. She was appointed to the Indiana Rural Development Council by the Lt. Governor and was elected to chair the Council by her peers. She also chairs the Indiana Agricultural Round Table and is President of the Indiana Leadership Association.
Even after all of her other responsibilities, Beth still finds time to volunteer in her local community. She served two years on the Purdue Extension Advisory Council for Hendricks County, assisted with the formation of the Leadership Hendricks County program, and served as team captain for the Danville Relay for Life.  Additionally she is a children’s ministry team leader and secured a grant for the building expansion at Clayton Christian Church.
2011Jane Ade StevensCertificate Of Distinction Winner- Jane Ade Stevens
Jane Ade Stevens is an “agricultural doer”, as one nominator stated. She currently works as the Senior Director of Programs for Indiana Soybean Alliance, Indiana Corn Marketing Council, and Indiana Corn Growers Association. She has also been called upon to serve as the Interim Executive Director for these groups. Jane graduated from Purdue with a B.S in Agriculture and was a member of the first graduate class from the Indiana Agricultural Leadership Program.
Jane has committed her professional career to serving agriculture. Her career has been one of communicating the importance of Indiana agriculture; of promoting Indiana farmers and their products; and defending agriculture against opposition groups of modern farming practices. One of the aspects that draw people to Jane is how passionate she is with sharing agriculture’s story with the non-agriculture public. Jane has exhibited this passion through her extensive career in agriculture. She has led producer trade missions to other countries to promote Indiana’s agricultural commodities. These missions also developed farmer spokespersons to educate fellow farmers on the importance of foreign markets and trade. When Jim Moseley was appointed Assistant Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment for the USDA, Jane was his first choice as Chief of Staff. Jane has also contributed to the Indiana State Fair by managing the Pioneer Our Land Pavilion and the Agriculture/Horticulture Building Exhibits.
Her passion has also led her to help others spread the message and importance of agriculture. She has spent countless hours working with members of 4-H, FFA, the Indiana Ag Leadership Program, and the Center for Agricultural Heritage and Science to develop leaders for the future. Jane also helps Indiana livestock producers develop skills to defend their right to operate using modern agricultural practices. This was so important to her that she founded the Indiana Livestock Alliance. Additionally she gives her time and service to numerous organizations dedicated to communication within agriculture. She is a member of the American Association of Agricultural Editors, National Farm Broadcasters Association, and Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow as well as various leadership boards.
2011ScottRumbleCertificate Of Distinction Winner- Scott Rumble
Scott Rumble retired in 2002 from a 42-year career with Purdue Extension Service. He worked in six different counties throughout his career as a 4-H Youth Agent, County Extension Director, Interim District Director, Ag and Natural Resources Agent, and Community Economic Development Agent.  He also served in the Army National Guard and Air Force Reserve for a combined 20 years. Even in his retirement he still works with Coldwell Banker Shook as a Commercial Realtor.  He has had an extensive education beginning with a B.S. from Purdue and an A.S. from Vincennes University.
During Scott’s tenure in Extension he brought members of the community closer through different projects. He brought high profile leaders from around the state to mentor or share advice with farmers, 4-Hers, and Master Gardeners. He established good networking relationships among farmers, 4-H families, and government officials. He is also very knowledgeable regarding computers and computer programs. With this knowledge he was able to bring the extension offices up to date and encouraged others to learn it as well.  He worked to improve the county fair, the 4-H program, and the community environment in all of the counties he served.
Anyone that has worked with Scott can attest to his hard work ethic, leadership, and people-skills. He has the unique ability to instill confidence in and develop other peoples’ gifts and talents, even when the people do not know they have those skills. When working in southern Indiana Scott took a leadership role in working with low-income rural youth and benefitted many families in Spencer and Perry counties. He is always willing to take on a challenge and works tirelessly to find a solution.
Scott can also be found working hard in his local community. He is Chairman of the Tippecanoe County Park Foundation; Member and Past President of Tippecanoe Co. YMCA Board; Member of St. Mary’s Church; and Past Lafayette Leadership Board Member and Current Facilitator. This is only a small list of the committees and organizations Scott is a part of. He has also been awarded with the Sagamore of the Wabash; Distinguished Hoosier- Indiana General Assembly; Distinguished Service Award- Tippecanoe Co. Pork Producers; and Outstanding Citizen, Princeton, IN.
2011ByronErnestLebanonINCertificate Of Distinction Winner- Byron Ernest
Byron Ernest did not intend to become a teacher when he started at Purdue, but during his sophomore year, Professor Hobe Jones convinced him that he had a talent for educating.  He earned his B.S. from Purdue in Agricultural Education and Animal Science as well as an M.S. in Agricultural Education. He has spent the last 25 years in education and is currently working on his Ph.D. from Walden University in Teacher Leadership.
For the past six years Byron has been an agriculture instructor, FFA Advisor, and department head at Lebanon High School. Byron is the first agriculture instructor the school has had since the program was cut from the curriculum in 1963. He restarted the program, established new facilities, and designed an enticing curriculum that encourages students to enroll in Ag classes. He teaches three different Advanced Life Science courses that can also earn students credits from Purdue University. The Advanced Life Science courses appeal to students who would normally not be interested in taking an agriculture class and helps them understand the role of agriculture in our everyday lives. Mr. Ernest has been able to grow the agriculture department to a four-teacher program with 584 students enrolled in Ag classes.
Bryon is a leader in advancing agriculture education into a new dimension of education. He implemented a new state-of-the-art welding shop that uses the same equipment as a technical school welding program. When he was chosen as a Distinguished Fellow of the Lilly Endowment’s Teacher Creativity Grant, it allowed him to improve the Advanced Life Science courses he taught into a model now used by Purdue University. He is now leading the movement to turn conventional classrooms into learning environments that link the latest technology, applications, and tools to traditional content area.
Among his many awards, Byron was named the 2010 Teacher of the Year. He has made it his mission to relay the importance of agriculture education as he travels throughout the state. Additionally he was named a Smithsonian Teacher Ambassador and SMART Exemplary Educator in 2010. He also shares his time and talents with his community as a football and baseball coach, Vice-President of the Lions Club, and member of the Community Vision Committee.
2011WilliamJ.BeardFrankfortINWilliam Beard- Certificate of Distinction Winner
After graduating from Purdue University with a B.S. in Agricultural Economics, William Beard and his wife founded Beard Industries in Frankfort, IN. Originally, Beard Industries began as a distributor of Steckley’s Genetic Giant Hybrid seed corn and sold Steckley grain bins on the side. However, when grain bin sales exceeded the seed corn business, the Beards decided to concentrate on a sales line of independent grain dryers.
With that decision, Beard Industries began to grow. In 1966 the factory was moved off the Beard farm and in 1968 the factory was expanded to accommodate the production of the Super-B Automatic Grain Dryers.  In response to rising energy costs in the 1970’s, Beard Industries developed their own dryer, the Superb Energy Miser Dryer.  In 1988 the Meyer Dryer was added and in 1997 the factory was expanded.
The Superb Energy Miser Dryer and Meyer Dryer have been shipped throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico as well as to Ecuador, Venezuela, Russia, England, China, and Turkey, making Beard Industries a world-wide leader in grain dryer manufacturing.
Bill has also provided his talents and generosity to various organizations within agriculture. He has been a member of the Clinton County Farm Bureau since 1950 and a member of the Indiana Association of Expert Swine Judges since 1940. He was named as an Agriculture Life Benefactor by the Purdue University Agriculture Dean’s Club and in 2003 was the Interim Director of Agriquest.
Although Bill retired in 2002, he did not slow down. After his retirement he was elected as a County Commissioner for Clinton County. During his term he has been a leader on several different projects including a six million dollar sewer and water project for the town of Jefferson and sufficient improvement to the county EMA Program. He is presently serving his second term, continuing to provide leadership and sacrificing his time for his community.
Bill and his wife were instrumental in bringing a YMCA to Clinton County, raising over four million dollars for the project. Bill now serves on the Board of Directors for the YMCA. Additionally he is an elder in the Frankfort First Christian Church, President of the Red Barn Summer Theatre Board of Directors, Chairman of the Clinton County Community Foundation Board of Directors, and President of the Frankfort Kiwanis.
2010H.WayneDillmanMartinsvilleINCertificate of Distinction Winner- 2010 Wayne Dillman
Wayne Dillman is the retired Legislative Director of the Indiana Farmers Union, now serving as a lobbyist with Indiana Farm Bureau. A native of Morgan County, Dillman graduated from Purdue University in 1951 with a B.S. in Animal Husbandry. After graduation, he served in the U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict, returning to Green Township in Morgan County to operate his family farm.

Dillman has dedicated his life to serving agriculture as a public affairs advocate, a career that spans 40 years. As one nominator said, “During that time, there has not been any significant agricultural legislation passed in Indiana without his review and counsel.” He represented both state and national interests during his long career with Indiana Farmers Union. He served as the organization’s lobbyist for 34 years, and also served as President, 1st Vice President and Secretary-Treasurer. He served on the National Farmers Union Executive Board and as Chairman of the Audit and Budget Committee.
Dillman is also an accomplished storyteller, humorist, author and historian, and is a member of the National Association of Storytellers. He has published a book, Growing Up Country, about rural life around Banta, Indiana.

Dillman has been tapped for service by many public boards and commissions, including: Indiana Commission for Agriculture and Rural Development (ICARD); the Indiana Governor’s Citizen Commission on Taxation; and the Hoosier Farmland Preservation Task Force. He is a charter member of the Center for Agricultural Science and Heritage, which relocated and refurbished the Normandy Barn on the grounds of the Indiana State Fairgrounds. He has also served as a member of the board of the Indiana FFA Foundation and the Purdue Agricultural Alumni Association (1992-2006).

After his retirement from Indiana Farmers Union, Indiana Farm Bureau hired Dillman to join their state lobbying team. In addition, he is a key volunteer for the Pioneer Farm and Home Show, a project of the Purdue Ag Alumni Association at the Indiana State Fair. During the fair, he is one of Pioneer Village’s senior historical interpreters and serves as the announcer for the daily antique farm machinery exhibitions. During the month preceding the fair, he cooks for the dozens of volunteer workers who set up the show’s exhibits. In 2009, the Indianapolis Star published a feature about Dillman’s lunches, and the dignitaries he hosts alongside the volunteers each day.

In his local community, he has served as a member of the Martinsville School Corporation Board; Morgan County Veterans Memorial Committee; and the Green Township Trustee Advisory Board. His civic memberships include the Masonic Lodge, Shrine Lodge and the American Legion. He is a member of the First United Methodist Church of Martinsville.

In recognition of his professional service and accomplishments in rural and agricultural public policy, Dillman has been honored by the Indiana General Assembly and he was named a Sagamore of the Wabash by Governor Joe Kernan.

2010MelvinF.VanceWaynetownINCertificate Of Distinction Winner- 2010 Melvin Vance
Melvin Vance was an agriscience educator in Montgomery County schools for 32 years, retiring in 1992. A native of Harrison County, Vance graduated from Purdue University in 1960 with a B.S. in Agricultural Education. He received his M.S. in Guidance Counseling from the University of Kentucky in 1967.

Vance began his teaching career at Waynetown High School, and later served as North Montgomery High School and Northridge Middle School following school consolidation. Through 40 years of service to the agriculture community, Mel Vance has been active in education, volunteerism, cultivating new ideas and growing people in knowledge and leadership of agriculture and agriscience. He developed the first horticulture program at North Montgomery High School, and he was instrumental in developing agriscience curriculum at the inception of Northridge Middle School. He worked with administrators to require agriscience classes for all seventh graders and took on the role of middle school vocational agriculture teacher during the first few years of the new consolidated school.

During his career, Vance provided service to his profession through numerous activities and organizations. He taught adult education at Waynetown High School (1960-66); served as Chapter Advisor for the Indiana Young Farmer’s Association (1970-1992); and as Chapter Advisor to the North Montgomery High School FFA (1973-1992). He also was instrumental in organizing a Singles Young Farmer Chapter in Montgomery County. Under his leadership, the Young Farmers Chapter organized fund raising efforts for the Heart Fund and developed the Ag Shop Program which enabled them to sponsor adult welding classes at the high school. Vance has also volunteered with the state and national FFA organizations to evaluate applications for State Proficiency Awards and judging Career Development Events. He also served as a cooperating teacher with Purdue University to assist in the training of student teachers.

Vance’s community service is extensive, as well. He has been a 4-H leader and volunteer judge for many competitions. For the past nine years he has worked with the Montgomery County Soil and Water Conservation District and Montgomery County Extension as a participant in the annual Ag Field Day event for 4th graders. For 30 years, Vance owned a fruit/vegetable and tree farm, and became active in the local merchants association, serving as secretary for many years and establishing a college scholarship for local students. He has been active in the Master Gardener program, and taught adult workshops at his farm on landscaping, fruit tree care and evergreen care. He has also been active in Pheasants Forever (1990-2002; banquet sponsor and officer) and the Sycamore Trails Resource Conservation and Development Council, which serves a nine-county area in West Central Indiana. Vance has served two terms as Wayne Township Trustee, and is a certified Level One Assessor who serves on the county’s tax board of appeals and has assisted county officials with property reassessment. His church leadership at Christian Union Church and First United Methodist of Crawfordsville includes almost 50 years as a Sunday School teacher, lay speaker, service to the Gideon ministry and several other leadership roles. He has filled in for several churches while they conducted pastoral searches.

Vance’s honors include: Honorary Hoosier Farmer Degree, Indiana FFA (1982); Advisor of the Year, Indiana Young Farmer’s Association (1983); Indiana Agriscience Teacher of the Year, National FFA (1991); and Montgomery County Friend of Agriculture Award (2006).
2010RaymondL.OrtmanKokomoINCertificate of Distinction Winner- 2010 Raymond %22Mick%22 Ortman
Mick Ortman is the Chairman of the Board of Kokomo Grain Co., Inc. He retired in 2003 as the company’s President and Chief Executive Officer. A native of Howard County, Ortman graduated from Purdue University in1951 with a B.S. in Agricultural Economics. After serving two years in the U.S. Marine Corps in the Korean Conflict, where he attained the rank of sergeant, he came home to Howard County in 1953 and began his career with what was then Kokomo Grain and Feed Company as a seasonal employee. He became sole owner of the family business in 1970.

Under Ortman’s leadership Kokomo Grain grew from a single feed mill with 12,000 bushels of storage to one of the largest privately held companies in Indiana, with seven locations in Indiana and three in Tennessee with 33 million bushels of storage. Originally a company that also sold fertilizer and feed, Kokomo Grain was also involved in producing swine breeding stock for pork producers. Ortman grew Kokomo Grain to its present size through innovation, revolutionizing the company by building flat storage buildings for inexpensive long-term commercial storage of grain and erecting fast, efficient grain dryers. He was also the first in the nation to build unit train loaders at his primary locations, dramatically altering the grain business landscape and opening up broader markets to local farmers. Ortman is also the sole owner of Winamac Southern Railway Co., a 52-mile short line railroad serving Howard, Cass and Carroll counties, primarily for agricultural clients. He has also been in instrumental in buying and rehabilitating other endangered Indiana rail segments. Ortman’s commitment to retaining quality of stored grain has built a premium market for Kokomo Grain’s products, many for human consumption, adding value for the Indiana farmers who are his customers. Over the years he worked closely with many Purdue Agriculture departments to fund and evaluate research to improve grain drying and storage techniques, at one point making his swine farm available to Purdue’s Animal Sciences Department to conduct on-farm feeding studies.

Ortman has served the grain industry in many organizations including: Indiana Grain and Feed Association (Chairman); Agribusiness Council of Indiana; Grain Elevator and Processing Society; and the American Short Line Railroad Association. He has been an active board member of the National Grain and Feed Association, serving on the Executive, Grain and Feed, Rail Shipper and Receiver, and Country Elevator committees. He was instrumental in forming the Agribusiness Council of Indiana and its political action committee (PAC).

Locally Ortman served many years on the advisory board for Indiana University-Kokomo and the St. Joseph Hospital Governing Board (Finance Committee), and he is a former board member of Union Bank. He is a former member of the Purdue University College of Agriculture Dean’s Advisory Council. Other organizations he has served include: Kokomo Rotary, Kokomo/Howard County Chamber of Commerce, United Way, Community Foundation of Howard County, Howard County Historical Society and Boy Scouts of America-Sagamore Council. His memberships also include the Elks Club and the Kokomo Country Club. He is an active parishioner at St. Patrick Church in Kokomo and a supporter of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Tipton.

In December 2009, Ortman was honored with the Distinguished Hoosier Award by Gov. Mitch Daniels.

2010GaryG.StandifordLafayetteINCertificate Of Distinction Winner- 2010 Gary Standiford
Gary Standiford is co-owner of SDF Farms, a grain farming operation based in Tippecanoe County, Indiana, and co-owner of DCI Development LLP, a commercial real estate development corporation. A native of Daviess County, Standiford graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in Food Science in 1960.

After graduating from Purdue, Standiford worked for FMC Corporation as a Senior Application Engineer. In 1965 he joined his wife Connie’s family in their farming operation, Daugherty Farms, and relocated to Tippecanoe County. Under his and Connie’s leadership, the farming operation transitioned out of its livestock enterprises and grew the grain production to include specialty grains and increased production into three counties. Standiford grew the farm by adopting new technology. He has some of the first GPS yield data collected in Indiana and he was one of the first growers in the state to take delivery of seed corn in bulk containers. He has been a cooperator with Purdue University, seed companies and other entities to test new technologies on his farm. As Lafayette’s growth extended toward their farming operation, Standiford set up a real estate development company to manage the growth and to develop the property along the corridor of 350 South. As both the farming and real estate businesses have grown, Standiford has brought the next generation of family members into the operation in various roles to insure the continuity of the family’s businesses.

Standiford has served the agricultural and Lafayette communities in many roles. He is founder and past president of the Tippecanoe County Grain Producers Association and has served on the Ag Committee of the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce. While serving on the Tippecanoe County Extension Board, he served on the committee to establish the county demonstration plots and he served as a member of the Building Commission for the Tippecanoe County Extension Office. He also served on the Building Commission for the Tippecanoe County Jail. As a member of a statewide committee of the Indiana Soybean Association Board, he helped to establish the state’s soybean check-off program. He is a former member of: Lafayette Coop Advisory Council; Vocational-Agriculture Adult Education Advisory Council; Farm Credit Services Tippecanoe County Advisory Board; and the Wea Township Advisory Board.

As a member of the board of the Purdue Agricultural Alumni Association from 1991 to 2009, Standiford founded the very successful Area IX Wabash Bash Golf Outing. The outing now draws more than 200 golfers; has a waiting list for participants; and has significantly raised the visibility of Purdue Ag Alumni in the community. At the time the outing was established, Purdue Agriculture was strategically increasing international study experiences for students, so Standiford directed the event’s proceeds to scholarships for Purdue agriculture students to study abroad.

Standiford is active in the Stidham United Methodist Church where he is a member of the Board of Trustees and the Jasper Stidham Endowment.

2010RossJabaayAmesIACertificate of Distinction Winner- 2010 Ross Jabaay
Ross Jabaay is the Senior Director, Food Safety and Quality, for Burke Corporation of Nevada, IA, a manufacturer and marketer of pizza-toppings and other fully-cooked meat products now owned by Hormel Foods.  A native of Jasper County, Jabaay graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in 1968 in Animal Science. He received his M.S. from Purdue in 1973, also in Animal Science with a concentration in meat science.

Jabaay is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, serving with the Veterinary Food Inspection Division. Upon completion of his master’s degree in 1973, he began his distinguished career in meat science as a quality engineer with Hormel Foods in Austin, MN. Jabaay moved to Farmland Foods, Inc. in Kansas City and during 11 years there established the Technical Service Function that combined Research and Development, Quality Control, Regulatory Affairs and Consumer Services. Career moves took him to Sugardale Foods, Canton, OH (1985-87) and Henry House, Inc./Tyson Foods, Inc., Springdale, AR (1987-95). At Henry House/Tyson, Jabaay was Director, Technical Services and Director, Beef and Pork Research and led initiatives to consolidate R & D teams from Tyson’s corporate acquisitions, and he organized and led projects teams to comply with the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act that had been passed as a new national standard in 1990. From 1995-2001 he was Director, Product Design and Quality for FreshMark, Inc. in Canton, OH where he initiated new product lines that added $5M in annual sales and three new lines of business to the company, and he implemented major plant expansions. He created a corporate food safety advisory board for FreshMark that included experts representing many aspects of food safety. Since 2001 Jabaay has been in his current role at Burke, which was acquired by Hormel in 2007. During his tenure at Burke, bioterrorism and food safety concerns have given rise to several major new federal laws with tremendous impact on food producers and manufacturers. Jabaay has been responsible for implementing Burke’s compliance with these new laws and has proactively implemented several new processes (temperature monitoring, database reporting for microbiological and temperature test results, metals database for identifying source of minute contaminants, and a quality performance database for better management of quality complaints) that enhance Burke’s quality and safety assurance programs.

Jabaay has an extensive record of service to the American Meat Science Association (AMSA) throughout his career, serving on numerous committees and authoring educational materials. Twice he has chaired the Meat Industry Research Conference. Other professional memberships and leadership positions include: Institute of Food Technologists (Chair-Elect, Iowa Section 2006-07, Chair, 2007-08, led industry scholarship drive resulting in three awards), American Meat Institute (Scientific Affairs Advisory (since 1977), Inspection Policy, Processed Meats, Convention Planning and Food Security Working Group committees); International Association of Food Protection; and American Society for Quality.

Jabaay’s civic and volunteer activities include serving as an ordained deacon in the Presbyterian Church. Since 2002 he has been an active volunteer at the Living History Farms in Des Moines where he has built authentic tools, researched pioneer meat processing techniques, and written a history of Walnut Hill Shorthorn cattle herd in order to recreate the herd books and the cattle activities of the 1800s. He has served as board member, vice president (2006) and president (2007) of the Purdue Club of Central Iowa. With Jabaay’s leadership, the club raised fund to award eight scholarships and achieved Gold Recognition Status from the Purdue Alumni Association during his leadership. He led the club’s effort to participate in the World Food Prize ceremonies in 2007 when Purdue’s Phil Nelson received the prize and hosted Dr. Nelson for a club activity.

Jabaay’s achievements have been recognized with many honors, including: President’s Award, Henry House Inc. (1989); Meat Processing Award, American Meat Science Association (1999); and Iowa Section Outstanding Leadership Award, IFT (2007-09). In 2003 the United Way of Central Iowa presented him with its Exceptional Volunteer Service recognition, in honor of his work with the Living History Farms.
2010WayneL.SingletonWest LafayetteINCertificate Of Distinction Winner- 2010 Wayne Singleton
Wayne Singleton is Professor Emeritus of Animal Sciences at Purdue University. He retired in 2003, after spending his entire career of 33 years at Purdue as Extension Swine Specialist in breeding herd management. Singleton is currently a swine breeding consultant as the principal of Reproductive Management Services LLC. A native of Knox County, Singleton graduated from Vincennes University in 1964 with an A.S. and from Purdue University in 1966 with a B.S. in Animal Science. He received both his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Animal Science from South Dakota State University in 1968 and 1970, respectively.

Singleton joined the Purdue faculty in 1970, and throughout his career was dedicated to educating swine producers about improved reproductive management techniques. He is considered a pioneer in the discipline of swine breeding because of his contributions to the broad and successful adoption of artificial insemination (AI) in the swine industry. AI revolutionized swine production since 1990, when only 5% of females were mated artificially. Currently, 85% of matings utilize AI, allowing producers to use superior sires and resulting in significant improvement of market hogs. Singleton was tireless in his pursuit of improved educational delivery. He took two sabbaticals to research distance education methods and improving employee education programs so that he could better serve his swine producer clients, and even utilized a television series to teach AI techniques across the country.

During his career Singleton authored 45 research publications, more than 50 Extension publications, six videocassettes and numerous other swine breeding herd management publications, and he was selected as one of six international authors for a comprehensive CD “Reproductive Management of Pigs-Ver. II” in 2003. He conducted more than 800 educational meetings in Indiana and nationally that reached more than 80,000 attendees, and he gave invited presentations in 20 states and 10 countries on four continents. He also served on 45 graduate student committees.

His professional and scholastic memberships include: American Society of Animal Science (ASAS), Purdue University Cooperative Extension Specialists Association (PUCESA), Sigma Xi, Gamma Sigma Delta, Phi Theta Kappa, Alpha Zeta, Indiana Pork Producers Association and Indiana Pork Advocacy Coalition. His leadership activities include: ASAS (Editorial Board and Chair of Extension Section); Purdue Animal Sciences Extension Coordinator (nine years); Indiana Pork Producers Executive Board (Secretary 1986-2004); National Pork Board (current member, Producer Education Committee). Singleton also served on the board of directors of the Purdue Ag Alumni Association, where he chaired the Latta Games Committee. He was faculty advisor to Chauncey Cooperative House from 1976-86.

Locally he was a Battle Ground 4-H Leader, coached youth soccer and baseball, and was active with the Battle Ground Middle School PTA and was a member of the Harrison High School Vocational Educational Advisory Committee.

Singleton has received many accolades for his contributions, most notably: Outstanding Alumnus, Vincennes University (1988); Meritorious Service Award, Indiana Pork Producers Association (1980); Eric Sharvelle Distinguished Extension Specialist Award, Purdue University (1988); Extension Specialists’ Award, ASAS (1997); Outstanding Teacher in Animal Sciences, Purdue School of Agriculture (2001); Frederick L. Hovde Award of Excellence for Educational Service to Rural People of Indiana (2003); Distinguished Service Award, National Pork Board (2007); and Pork Industry Master, National Hog Farmer Magazine (2008).
2010RobertL.NielsenSpringfieldNECertificate Of Distinction Winner- 2010 Robert Nielsen
Bob Nielsen is Professor of Agronomy at Purdue University, where he has served as the Extension Corn Specialist for almost 28 years. A native of southeast Nebraska near Springfield, Nielsen graduated from the University of Nebraska in 1977 with a B.S. in Agronomy. He earned both his M.S. and Ph.D. in Plant Breeding at the University of Minnesota in 1980 and 1982, respectively.

Nielsen’s primary responsibility at Purdue is the transfer of corn production information to Indiana agricultural clientele. Since 1983 he has taught in over 1200 Extension programs reaching 141,000 individuals in Indiana, the U.S. and other countries. Nielsen has been an innovator in adopting new technologies, including the internet, for teaching and disseminating information. His KingCorn website had 377,000 page accesses in 2007. At KingCorn’s Chat ‘n Chew Café, Nielsen links to current information about corn production from around the country. The Café had 113,000 page accesses in 2007. Nielsen was a member of the team that established Purdue’s Diagnostic Training Center, and has been a program participant ever since. He is particularly skilled at creating field plot examples of the problems he wants to teach clients to recognize and manage. His current research projects focus on nitrogen management and use of foliar fungicides. In addition to his own research, Nielsen is a frequent collaborator on corn research and extension projects across several College of Agriculture departments. He is a major contributor to Purdue’s popular Corn & Soybean Guide and the Purdue Crop Cost & Return Guide. Since 1983 he has authored more than 380 hardcopy newsletters and more than 400 on-line newsletter articles since 1995. He has been featured in more than 500 news releases and farm magazine articles and has participated in more than 150 radio and television interviews. He is a skilled photographer as well, and many of his publications use his own photographs as illustrations. Known as both an effective speaker and presenter and a prolific writer, Nielsen is a model extension specialist to his peers. To many Indiana producers, his truck’s license plate says it best: Nielsen is simply the “Corn Guy.”

Nielsen’s professional memberships include: American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Purdue University Cooperative Extension Specialists Association (PUCESA), Alpha Zeta and Gamma Sigma Delta. He is also a member of the Indiana and national corn and soybean growers’ associations. At Purdue, he serves on the Indiana Crop Improvement Association Seed and Grain Committee, and the Biweekly Crops and Weather Group. He is a member of the advisory committee for both the Purdue Plant and Pest Diagnostic Laboratory and the Agronomy Research Center. He also serves on the Agronomy department’s Beck Ag Center Committee and the Agronomy Web Advisory Committee.

An active member of Our Savior Lutheran Church, Nielsen has served as a member of the Finance Committee for the past 23 years, providing leadership as Treasurer (1986-91) and as Building Fund Treasurer (1992-2009). He served on the Purdue Lutheran Ministry Board from 1995-97. He has also served Harrison High School sports program as a photographer for Girls’ Soccer (2004-07) and Boys’ Tennis (2006-09).

Nielsen’s many honors include: USDA Unit Award for Superior Service (1989, for responding to the 1988 drought); Team Award (1993) and International Service Award (1997), Epsilon Sigma Phi; Eric G. Sharvelle Distinguished Extension Specialist Award, Purdue University (1999); Crops and Soils Merit Award, Indiana Crop Improvement Association (2001); Purdue Extension Team Award (2006); and Entomology Educational Project Award, Board Certified Entomologists of Mid-America (2007). He has received several citations from the American Society of Agronomy, including:  the Werner L. Nelson Award (1995), Extension Educational Materials Award (1998); Division A-7 Innovator Award (2005); Educational Materials Certificate of Excellence (2006); and Agronomic Extension Award (2009).

2010JerryNickelCarmelINCertificateOfDistinction-2010 Jerry Nickel
Jerry Nickel is the President and founder of Midwest Ag Finance, a financial services firm based in Rushville that services a loan portfolio of $170 million and insures 190,000 crop acres in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio. A native of Hamilton County, Nickel graduated from Purdue University in 1975 with a B.S. in Animal Science.

Nickel grew up on the historic Lynwood Farm in Carmel where his grandfather worked for more than 50 years and his father managed the show herd of Polled Shorthorns. Nickel was active in 4-H and was an accomplished showman of Polled Shorthorn cattle and Berkshire hogs. At Purdue he was a member of Alpha Gamma Rho and competed on the meats and livestock judging teams. After graduating from Purdue, he took a position managing a farm in central Kentucky, but returned to Indiana in 1980. Nickel took a position as ag loan officer with Production Credit Association in Rushville, thinking it would be temporary until he could get back into production agriculture. But it turned out that he had found his calling. Nickel was hired by Rush County National Bank in 1985 where he developed the bank’s ag loan portfolio. He stayed with the bank through several mergers and acquisitions, eventually working for Norwest Bank. He became Norwest’s Regional Ag Credit Administrator for the Indiana region. In that role he worked with bank management to develop ag credit policy and mentored the region’s agricultural lenders. In 1998, amidst tremendous bank consolidation, Nickel saw a niche for a specialized agricultural finance company with local ties to its borrowers. He assembled investors and founded Midwest Ag Finance (MAF) with three employees. Today the company has 37 employees, including crop insurance agents. MAF has gained a reputation of integrity and commitment to working diligently with clients to achieve financial soundness and success in the volatile agriculture market. MAF’s impact on the Indiana ag credit community is impressive: just over 25% of the loans guaranteed by the Indiana Farm Service Agency (FSA) are originated by MAF. Cumulatively, the company has over $86 million in loans guaranteed by FSA, nearly twice as much as FSA’s second most active lender. FSA attributes this to Nickel and his commitment to producers and his business acumen in effective structuring of agricultural loans.

Nickel has been active with the Indiana Ag Bankers Society, serving from 1985-93 in the roles of President and Secretary/Treasurer. He has served on the Ag Committee of the Indiana Bankers Association (1989-95). In 2007 he was an invited lecturer for the Mid America Cooperative Council Credit Conference. He was a member of Sen. Dan Quayle’s ag advisory committee (1988) and the Indiana Agriculture Strategic Planning Committee (2002).

Nickel’s service to Central Christian Church in Connersville is extensive. He has served as Chair of the Church Board, Chair of the Financial Committee, Treasurer of the Church Board, Small Group Lay Minister and a host of other committees. He is currently the Chair of the Board of Elders. During his leadership of the Church Board, Nickel led the church through a difficult period of divisiveness, eventually restoring the congregation to spiritual and financial health. Since 2006 he has served on the board of directors of Paraclete Retreat Center, Inc. in Brown County, Indiana. Paraclete is a non-denominational center with the purpose of facilitating Christian spiritual growth for individuals and organizations.  
2010FrankM.ClarkWilliamsportINCertificate of Distinction Winner- 2010 Frank Clark
Frank Clark operates a family farm in Warren County that includes a cow-calf operation and feedlot, as well as cropping corn, soybeans and wheat. Clark graduated from Purdue University in 1954 with a B.S. in Animal Husbandry. As a student, he worked his way through school working at the Animal Sciences Research Farms, and he was a student athlete, competing as a pitcher on Purdue’s baseball team.

Clark’s dedication to the cattle industry is described by his nominators as a passion, and his record of local, state and national service bears that out. His industry service includes: President of the Indiana Beef Cattle Association (IBCA) and Dues Director of the National Cattleman’s Beef Association (NCBA) as well as a three-year appointment by the USDA Secretary to the Cattlemen’s Beef Board, the national check-off board. While on the IBCA board, he helped guide the organization through a financial crisis, personally backing a loan that allowed IBCA to turn around and become financially stable. His dedication to recruiting NCBA members has earned him perennial recognition as a Top Hand recruiter by NCBA. At the state level, Clark has served several terms as Chairman of the Indiana Commission for Farm Animal Care. His service also extends to Purdue, where he has served on the advisory board of the Animal Disease and Diagnostic Laboratory and for nearly a decade on the Scholarship Committee of the Animal Sciences Department. In 2001, Frank and his wife Wini endowed a beef scholarship in the department to recognize a student for academic, leadership and beef industry excellence. Additionally, the Clark’s have frequently hosted industry tours and activities at their farm, including Purdue Extension educator training, and tours for Purdue students and campus visitors. On one notable occasion, the Clark’s welcomed 100 freshman Animal Sciences students into their home, serving lunch after a tour on a snowy day after a corporate sponsorship for the lunch was cancelled.

Clark has served tirelessly in his community as well. He has been a member of the St. Vincent-Williamsport hospital board for more than 30 years, where he has advocated for quality service for an underserved area. Clark served on the Warren County Council, where as member and as chairman he advocated for Purdue Extension, and he is a former member of the local school board. He served two terms on the Warren County Extension Board, and is a past member of the Warren County 4-H Fair Board, where he served as 4-H Horse and Pony Superintendent. He continues to be active on the Warren County Economic Development Board, and serves as an elder of Trinity Presbyterian Church. He is currently serving on the local committee for the Lilly Education Grant program.

In recognition of Clark’s achievements and his service, IBCA has honored him with its Outstanding Cattleman Award (1992) and the Robert Peterson-Lynnwood Farm Lifetime Achievement Award (2002). In 2004 the Purdue Department of Animal Sciences honored him with the Distinguished Animal Science Alumni Lifetime Achievement Award.

2010NolaJ.GentryWest LafayetteINCertificate of Distinction Winner- 2010 Nola Gentry
Nola Gentry is Manager and Corporate Treasurer of Gentry Farms, Inc., a 950-acre grain farm in Tippecanoe County which also includes a Becks Hybrids seed dealership. She is also a Director of the Farmers State Bank in Brookston. A native of Hamilton County, Gentry graduated from Purdue University in 1974 with a B.S. in Family Economics.

Upon graduation from Purdue, Gentry became an Assistant Cashier at the Farmers State Bank in Brookston. She continued her education with graduate courses at Purdue; receiving both standard and basic certificates from the American Institute of Banking in 1979; and completing the Ag Banking School at Purdue in 1981. In 1981 she took over as manager of her family’s farming operations in Tippecanoe County. In 1986 she became a director of Farmers State Bank. From 1989 to 1990, Gentry was the District Office Manager of the U. S. Bureau of the Census, responsible for census operations in 20 Indiana counties, and completed the task substantially under budget.

From 1990 to 1996 she served on the Tippecanoe County Commission. During her service on the Commission, she held numerous leadership positions including: Chair, Wildcat Creek Solid Waste Management Board; Chair, Legislative Committee, Association of Indiana Counties (1995); and Treasurer, Indiana Association of County Commissioners (1996). She is also a past member of both the Tippecanoe Economic Development Commission and the West Lafayette Redevelopment Commission. In 2005, Gentry was appointed by Gov. Mitch Daniels to the Indiana State Soil Conservation Board, and since 2008 has served as Chair of the Board.

Gentry’s community service record is extensive. She has served on the board of numerous organizations, including: YWCA, YWCA Foundation, Harrison Kiwanis Club, United Way of Greater Lafayette, Meals on Wheels, and the American Cancer Society – Tippecanoe County Unit. Organizations she has served as both board member and president include: The Museums at Prophetstown (Historic Prophetstown); Indiana 4-H Foundation; and Shared Enterprise Management, Inc., the non-profit owner of the Howarth Center which houses seven non-profit agencies and an office of the Indiana Vocational Rehab Department. She is a member and past treasurer of the League of Women Voters of Greater Lafayette, and is a member of the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce where she serves on both the Third House and Federal Government Committees. Gentry is a passionate supporter of Purdue University, especially women’s athletics. She is a member and past president of the Boilermaker Network (women’s basketball booster club) and a past board member of the Gold Block Volleyball Booster Club. She also served on the Purdue Alumni Association Board as the Region One representative. Her leadership roles at First United Methodist Church of West Lafayette have included: Lay Leader; Trustee; Chair, Education Committee; and Chair, Relocation and Building Project ($5 million) from 2001-04.

In 2001, in conjunction with its 75th anniversary, Purdue’s College of Consumer and Family Sciences honored Gentry as one of 75 recipients of its Hidden Diamond Award, designed to recognize “unsung heroes” who had not previously been honored by the college but who have been “instrumental in inspiring families and building communities." 
1938Horace Abbott
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1938H. S. Benson
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1938Myron Cromer
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1938J. H. SkinnerCertificate of Distinction Winner- 1938 John H. Skinner
John Harrison Skinner was born at Romney, Indiana, in Tippecanoe County, March 10, 1874. After the usual routine in the public schools he entered Purdue University in 1893 and completed the four-year course in 1897, with the degree of Bachelor of Science. For two and a half years following he managed his father's grain and stock farm, after which he returned to Purdue and began work in 1899 as assistant agriculturist in the experiment station, continuing until the fall of 1901, when he went to the University of Illinois as instructor in animal husbandry for a year. Returning to Purdue, he was made associate professor of animal husbandry, then professor of animal husbandry, and was later promoted to Dean of the School of Agriculture in 1907. Skinner was the first Dean of Purdue’s School of Agriculture (1907-1939). He grew the program from one building and 150 acres to ten buildings and 1,000 acres during his tenure as dean. He was a member of the American Breeders' Association, the Society for the Promotion of Agricultural Science and secretary of the Indiana Live Stock Breeders' Association.
1941Otis Crane
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1941Claude R. WickardCamdenINCertificate Of Distinction Winner- 1941 Claude Wickard
Wickard served as Secretary of Agriculture under President Franklin D. Roosevelt from 1940 to 1945. Wickard was born on his family farm in Carroll County, Indiana, near Camden. He graduated from Purdue University in 1915, with a bachelor's degree in agriculture, and was chosen as "Master Farmer of Indiana" in 1927 for his improvements in stock feeding and farming. Elected to the Indiana Senate in 1932, he was appointed as Undersecretary of Agriculture. When Henry A. Wallace resigned as Secretary of Agriculture in 1940 to run for Vice-President of the United States, Wickard succeeded to the post. During World War II, Wickard headed the War Foods Administration, promoting increased farm production as a matter of patriotism.  Wickard resigned in 1945 to become chief of the Rural Electrification Administration, until 1953.
1939J. F. Hull
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1939D. B. Johnson
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1939Oran Mansfield
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1942Raymond S. Bundy
The Ag Alumni office has no biographical information on this award winner. If you have information you are willing to share, please contact our office at (765) 494-8593.
1942Maurice DouglasShelby CountyIN
Maurice Douglas was a state legislator, founder of Indiana Farm Bureau, farmer, lawyer, and insurance agent in Shelby County. He graduated from Franklin College in June 1896 and joined the Indiana Bar in December 1986. He took a job in Michigan until 1904 when his parents urged him back to the family farm. Here he served on the stock Special Train in 1912 and as an instructor for Farmer's Institute sponsored by Purdue in 1935. Additionally he was a member of the Indiana House and the Indiana Senate focusing on agricultural concerns. In 1919 as part of the Grange Institute he helped found Indiana Farm Bureau, Inc. He was the District 8 Director from 1936-1946. During the Great Depression and WWII, Douglas served on the Agricultural Administration Act Board.
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