Skip to Main Content

New farm manager hired to lead ACRE

E

stablished in 1949 as Purdue’s campus-based field research station for agronomic crops and soils research, the Agronomy Center for Research and Education (ACRE) is home to innovative researchers, passionate students and now the center’s third farm manager.

Rachel Stevens began overseeing the 1,600-acre farm at the beginning of April. She’s responsible for the planning and placement of crops, adoption of good management practices and the day-to-day support to ensure researchers and students have the right tools to be successful.

Left to right, Rachel Stevens, Aaron Kult, Bryan Gretencord and Evan Bossung Left to right, Rachel Stevens, Aaron Kult, Bryan Gretencord and Evan Bossung

“I’m excited to step into ACRE as the third farm manager and see what I can bring to the table. ACRE has a great foundation of agronomic research and an incredible staff of research technicians, Bryan, Aaron, and Evan, that I am lucky to work with every day. I’ve enjoyed seeing the variety of research conducted at the farm and meeting the faculty, staff and student researchers,” said Stevens.

Stevens grew up on a farm in the southeast corner of Nebraska. She attended the University of Nebraska, earning an undergraduate degree in agronomy and master’s in mechanized systems management with an emphasis in precision agriculture. After graduate school, Stevens worked as a crop consultant and assisted with digital marketing. She proceeded to work part-time for a professor in the Purdue Agronomy department while also managing a consulting firm specializing in web development and marketing materials for small agriculture businesses.

“I believe that Rachel is the ideal farm manager to lead ACRE’s next chapter of growth and success. The search committee was impressed by her strong background in digital agriculture, innovative ideas and her ability to work in a highly functional team-driven setting. Her drive and determination are already paying dividends for our operations,” said Ron Turco, department head of Purdue Agronomy.

As digital agriculture and agriculture technology continue to change the industry, Stevens is eager for new technology-based research projects on the farm. One of her highest prioritized goals is to keep better track of the farm’s data, compile the data into a more usable format for researchers and leverage it for practical farm management decisions.

Stevens also hopes to make the farm more accessible and applicable to those outside of research projects, including students and Indiana farmers. From launching a summer internship program to hosting Purdue Extension events, she’s excited to undertake new projects that will ensure ACRE stays relevant in the agriculture space.

“Aside from the novel research occurring, I want farmers to know what we are doing on the farm adds value to them as growers. We want to address the research questions that are important to farmers in Indiana and the Midwest as well as food security around the world,” said Stevens.

“Digital agriculture and how we harness data to make sustainable decisions and be better stewards of our resources are going to be extremely important as we move forward.”

Featured Stories

turkey cooked
How to Cook a Turkey the Day before Serving it

Sometimes it may be easier to prepare your turkey the day before you plan to serve it. Here is...

Read More
Christian Butzke receiving 2022 APLU North Central Region Excellence in Extension Award
USDA, APLU & Cooperative Extension Award Top Honor to Purdue Extension Enologist

Christian Butzke, Purdue Extension Enologist, Purdue Food Science professor and Purdue...

Read More
A combine fills a gravity wagon with grain
Purdue Extension Offers Virtual Workshop on Farmland Leasing

Landowners and farmers can learn more about the various tools, trends, and legal protections...

Read More
wheat
2022 Tri-state CSA Conference: Thinking Inside the Box coming soon

Thinking Inside the Box, the 2022 Tri-state CSA Conference is the place to be November 12-13....

Read More
Capital Comments
Cost of Living Adjustments

Inflation has been so low for so long that we hardly noticed them. Now inflation is the highest...

Read More
animal science class, young man holding a baby chick
Full ride scholarship allows Animal Science students to REACH for their dreams

To meet the demand for animal science graduates within Indiana’s poultry industry,...

Read More
To Top