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In AgrICulture And lIfe sCIenCes Vol.5 No.1, 2011 aha! Agriculture’s entrepreneuriAl spirit shines 14 Ag business student brings Cy to life 18 Alumni share their secrets to success 28 Innovation in action down on the farm foreword In AgrICulture And lIfe sCIenCes I Editor: ’ve always thought entrepreneurs had guts. Melea Reicks Licht (’00 public service and administration in agriculture, Lots of guts. MS ’05 agricultural and life sciences education) I’m what you would call a “risk-averse” person. Just listening to Kevin Kimle recount how he left behind WritErs: Ed Adcock, Christa Hartsook, Sherry Hoyer, a successful career at a well-established company to Barbara McBreen, Brian Meyer, Melea Reicks strike out on his own with a brand new company made Licht, Susan Thompson me sweat. No health insurance? Just the thought makes dEsign: me feel ill. Photo: Bob Elbert PUSH Branding and Design I imagined that entrepreneurs were risk-takers welcoming “opportunities” that would make many of us squirm. Sleepless nights, dwindling bank accounts College of Agriculture and Life sciences Administration and neglected home lives? I figured they were all part Wendy Wintersteen (PhD ’88 entomology), of the game. Dean and Director, Experiment Station Then I talked with a few of our most successful entrepreneurial alumni (see Joe Colletti, Senior Associate Dean Q&A on page 18). They helped me realize that to entrepreneurs, it is about not taking a risk. They believe so strongly in their idea that, to them, leaving it idle John Lawrence (’84 animal science, MS ’86 economics), Associate Dean Extension Programs is the real risk. and Outreach, Director Extension Agriculture This issue of STORIES will offer insight into the lives of selected alumni, students, and Natural Resources faculty and staff who embody the entrepreneurial spirit that is prevalent in agri- David Acker, Associate Dean Academic and culture and life sciences. Global Programs, Raymond and Mary Baker This issue highlights the educational efforts of our Agricultural Entrepreneurship Chair in Global Agriculture Initiative and other student programs that are giving our students the tools to strike out on their own, or be entrepreneurial within the organization of their choice. CoLLEgE ContACts Kevin Kimle, the director of the initiative (profiled on page 6), makes entrepre- To contact the magazine: neurship contagious. Through his classes and programs, entrepreneurial principles STORIES Editor sound exciting, rewarding and achievable. Even the most risk-averse of us may 304 Curtiss Hall just be inspired to take a risk and live out our passion. Ames, IA 50011 Phone: (515) 294-5616 E-mail: email@example.com Kind regards, www.ag.iastate.edu/stories For prospective students: Student Services 33 Curtiss Hall Ames, IA 50011 Phone: (515) 294-2766 Melea Reicks Licht E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org www.ag.iastate.edu To make a gift: Development Office 310 Curtiss Hall Ames, IA 50011 College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Phone: (515) 294-7677 E-mail: email@example.com www.ag.iastate.edu/agdevelopment In AgrICulture And lIfe sCIenCes Vol.5 No.1, 2011 aha! Agriculture’s on thE CovEr entrepreneuriAl spirit shines Kevin Kimle has had more than a few bright ideas. As the Bruce Rastetter Chair in Entrepreneurship and director of the Photo: Bob Elbert Cert no. SW-COC-002357 Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative, 14 Ag business student brings Cy to life 18 Alumni share their he helps students pursue bright futures. secrets to success Iowa State University does not discriminate on the basis 28 Innovation in action down on the farm of race, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orien- Read more about Kimle on page 6. tation, gender identity, genetic information, sex, marital status, disability, or status as a U.S. veteran. Inquiries can be directed to the Director of Equal Opportunity and Compliance, 3280 Beardshear Hall, (515) 294-7612. from the deAn R ecently, student tuition surpassed state of Iowa funding as the primary contributor to the base of resources that keep our campus functioning. A main challenge now is to ensure students continue to receive an outstanding education and a promising future at a competitive price, while maintaining state support as much as we are able. It also means that success in external research funding is even more critical. It’s essential to be able to expand the frontiers of science—and, as state resources shrink, to shoulder greater responsibility for the vital education and training of our graduate students and a greater share of the basic infrastructure expenses that run our campus. That is why I feel fortunate and grateful our faculty in agriculture and life sciences are some of the very best at competing for external grants and contracts. They work very hard at it. During a span of six months in 2010, they submitted nearly 160 proposals to federal agencies, which remain a primary source for research funds. External sources recognize innovation. In fiscal year 2010, our faculty were awarded more than $58 million in sponsored funding. A recent shining example of success: In February, the USDA announced three major grants to study climate and agriculture. Iowa State was awarded one of the $20 million grants, thanks to the leadership of sociology professor Lois Wright Morton and a team of 42 scientists at nine land-grant universities. Also, John Patience, professor of animal science, received a $5 million grant to study nutrient utilization and feed efficiency in pigs. Basil Nikolau, professor of biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology, was awarded $1.4 million to study metabolomics, a tool to understand plant gene function. And Joe Cortes of the Seed Science Center was awarded one of the most competitive grants you can hope for—a Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation grant of $1.4 million to enhance seed policies in regions of Africa. Our faculty understand the ingredients of success. Whether it’s in the classroom and lab or engaging with partners, the ingredients remain the same—long hours, dedication, a collaborative spirit and an ever-present awareness of our mission. I am grateful for their efforts, and I hope you are, too. Wendy Wintersteen Endowed Dean of Agriculture and Life Sciences ContEnts 4 FACuLty + stAFF 17 EntrEPrEnEuriAL sPirit 26 ALumni n Russ Mullen n Sharing secrets to success n Andrea Falk Sellers n Alison Robertson n Setting trends in n Nick Frey n Kevin Kimle undergrad education n Jay Hansen n Barb Osborn n Internships sharpen n Maggie Howe entrepreneurial edge n Perennial favorite: Robert Jolly n Providing students 32 PArtnErs experience, 11 studEnts n Plant Peddler, networking n Alle Buck Iowa State add value n Bringing science to the public n Krista McCarty n BioCentury Research Farm n Enacting the entrepreneurial partners with industry n Andy Edson nature of ag n Matthew Burt 35 invEsting in ExCELLEnCE n Taking students “Into the Field” n Mohn Scholarship to help students see the world AlmAnAc A nEW tAKE ON AN OLD CLASSIC BY THE numBErs ISU Extension’s corn production team has completed a new publication, “Corn Growth and Development,” replacing “How a Corn Plant Develops,” the previous Iowa State ToP 10 EmPLoyErs oF AgriCuLturE publication that served as the standard And LiFE sCiEnCEs grAds reference on corn growth and development 1. Pioneer Hi-Bred International (23) for more than 40 years. The first publica- 2. U.S. Department of Agriculture (16) tion, written by ISU agronomists of previ- 3,298 3-4. Iowa DNR and Monsanto Company tied (9 each) ous eras, established the basics still used 5. Iowa State University (8) today for staging and communicating 6-7. AgReliant Genetics and John Deere tied (7 each) about crop development. The late John 8-9. Ag Leader Technology and FC Coop (6 each) Hanway, a well-known ISU agronomist, undErgrAduAtEs 10. Cargill and Dow AgroSciences/Mycogen tied (5 each) wrote the first version in 1966, which was followed by a rewrite in 1982 by Steven 4,001 98 % Ritchie, Hanway and Garren Benson. Authors of “Corn Growth and Development” are Lori Abendroth, ISU Extension totAL EnroLLmEnt agricultural specialist; Roger PLACEmEnt Elmore, ISU Extension corn $1.4 million+ specialist; Matthew Boyer, former ISU agronomy grad- in sChoLArshiPs At CoLLEgE uate student; and Stephanie And dEPArtmEntAL LEvELs Marlay, ISU agronomy spe- 6 cialist. The 2011 publication WAys to EArn A mAstEr’s onLinE provides an in-depth look at Distance education masters degree programs corn, from the moment the seed is planted in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: all the way to maturity. It takes much of 24 n Agriculture what is known about crop physiology and n Agricultural education undErgrAduAtE combines that with field agronomics to n Agronomy mAjors provide students, corn growers and agron- n Community development omists current, relevant and technical n Plant breeding information. To purchase a copy of the n Seed science technology new publication or photographs visit and business management www.ag.iastate.edu/stories. ioWA stAtE nAmEd INSTITUTIONAL FACILITY OF THE YEAR Biofuels Digest named Iowa State its pick as Institutional Research Facility of the Year. The publication cited the BioCentury Research Farm for its integrated research approach. The farm provides researchers with the opportunity to integrate harvesting, transportation, storage and processing, while offering facilities for outreach programming and industry collaboration. It is located 10 miles west of Ames at the Iowa State Agronomy and Agricultural and Biosystems Research Farm. (Read about a collaborative biomass research project underway at the farm on page 34.) 2 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 CHILDREN BORN WITH RARE MPS hAvE nEW hoPE $20 miLLion grAnt A new study offers hope for children born with a rare PUTS IOWA STATE AT THE HELM OF genetic disease, nAtionAL CLimAtE ChAngE rEsEArCh according to a paper published by the The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s to create a database of plot, field, American Associa- National Institute of Food and Agriculture farm and watershed data that can tion for the Advance- (USDA-NIFA) has awarded a $20 million be combined with climate data to ment of Science. grant to Iowa State University for regional develop scenarios based on different Matthew Ellinwood, research on keeping Midwest cornfields practices,” says Lois Wright Morton, animal science, led resilient in the face of future climate Iowa State professor of sociology the research focused uncertainties. Iowa State researchers will and project director. “Then, farmers Photo: Ed Adcock on a disorder called coordinate a team of 42 scientists from in the region will have opportunities mucopolysaccharidosis type I, or MPS I. 10 land-grant universities and two USDA to participate in on-farm research and The disorder is caused by the lack of a Agricultural Research Service institutions evaluate research models.” The USDA-NIFA key enzyme that breaks down substances to collect and analyze data over the next program is focused on decreasing green- the body needs to help build normal five years. Researchers will begin collecting house gas emissions and increasing carbon nerves, bone, cartilage, tendons, corneas, data on carbon, nitrogen and water move- sequestration. The long-term national skin and connective tissue. Ellinwood has ment this spring from 21 research sites. outcome is to reduce the use of energy, been studying the disease for 12 years in Special equipment will be used to monitor nitrogen and water by 10 percent and dogs, which also suffer from the disorder. greenhouse gas emissions at many of the increase carbon sequestration by 15 He and collaborators demonstrated that sites. The team will integrate field and percent through resilient agriculture beginning replacement of the enzyme climate data to create models and evaluate and forest production systems. shortly after birth prevented irreversible crop management practices. “The goal is damage caused by the disease. CAMPAIGN TO WOO PROSPECTIVE PARENTS LiZArd’s LoCAtion LENGTHENS (OR SHORTENS) PREGNANCY Wins Addy AWArd ISU researchers have found the eggs The Parents’ Postcard Campaign coordi- of some lizards can take a few months nated by college student services andmar- to hatch, while others in the same keting, and designed by ZLR IGNITION, species fully develop within several received a gold ADDY award from the weeks. Researchers in the lab of Fred American Advertising Federation of Des Janzen, ecology, evolution and organismal Moines in February. Judges from around biology, recently published a paper in the country reviewed nearly 300 creative the American Naturalist journal on their pieces. Entries receiving a gold ADDY are work on geographic variation in gestation automatically forwarded to the district of lizards and turtles. They believe envi- level competition. Ads similar to the post- ronmental factors in the various regions cards appear on may have led to the evolution of differing the back of each gestation periods. The published research, issue of STORIES. led by Wei-Guo Du, a visiting scientist Photo: Rory Telemeco from Hangzhou Normal University, China, and ISU postdoc Dan Warner, has made news—including a spot in the New York Times. SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 3 f A c u lt y + s tA f f Photo: Bob Elbert Russ Mullen helps Meaghan Bryan, a senior in agronomy, prepare for a presentation during an entrepreneurship unit of his agronomy course. Mullen continues to innovate by using new class- room technology and adapting his curriculum. PrACtiCing thE Cutting-EdgE IN CLASSROOM INNOVATION By susan thompson Russ Mullen has seen 14,000 students agriculture have come from independent the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences move through his classrooms since he entrepreneurs, and I worry about the loss of Adviser of the Year, plus received the ISU joined the agronomy faculty in 1978. Of innovation, creativity and entrepreneurial Award for Academic Advising Impact. He those, 10,000 were in the introductory spirit of our agricultural workforce,” he received the college’s Outstanding Teacher agronomy course, which he has been says. “It was natural for me to incorporate Award in 1998. teaching for more than 30 years. a component that helps introduce and About 200 students have joined Mullen “This is the course and students that strengthen entrepreneurship skills.” on 11 international trips. This year, he led continue to motivate me the most,” says The six-week unit covers basic principles 27 students on a two-week, winter break Mullen. “It has given me a creative oppor- in entrepreneurship and a team competition travel course through Panama to learn tunity to innovate in teaching methods in which students develop an agricultural about tropical agriculture. and improve learning tools for students.” idea for a business and present their plans. Mullen conducts research on the effects “Emphasis is placed on individualized The unit was patterned after “The Thinker” of environmental and biological stresses learning rather than large group instruction program Mullen added in 1998. on seed quality, primarily soybean. And with one-on-one instruction in a learning “Students are given technical problems while he is proud of his research successes, center,” he says. “Students have flexibility with ethical and environmental ramifica- it’s clear his first love is students. in structuring their learning and quizzing tions and allowed to discuss them in small “I’ve always believed the greatest over- schedule, using a variety of tools such as groups during the thinker exercise. Later, all, long-term impact I could make as a computer-based video, practice learning the questions and answers are discussed faculty member would be to teach and and hands-on demonstrations.” by the entire group,” Mullen says. “The advise well,” Mullen says. “Education is Students also apply their learning by idea is to encourage students to develop the primary method of societal improve- discussing and troubleshooting agronomic and appreciate broader issues associated ment. Teaching provides an exciting and problems in weekly small group sessions. with technical solutions.” challenging environment for growth of Mullen serves on the faculty advisory Mullen also teaches several other both the teacher and learner.” panel for the Agricultural Entrepreneurship courses, and advises nearly 30 students Initiative. “Many of our past innovations in each year. He was honored in 2010 as 4 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 f A c u lt y + s tA f f Extension plant pathologist Alison Robertson is a “plant doctor” who helps farmers diagnose and manage crop diseases. Photo: Brent Pringritz thE doCtor is in groWErs’ quEstions shAPE ExtEnsion PLAnt PAthoLogist’s rEsEArCh By Brian meyer A perfeCt dAy for AlIson robertson 2009. “We got a lot of questions about ear better understand pathogen-crop interac- would hAve her stAndIng In A Corn rots and mycotoxins,” she says. “As a result, tions. As a plant pathologist in Iowa, where or soybeAn fIeld under A sCorChIng we studied how hail affects grain quality about 23 million acres of beans and corn are sun, swImmIng In hIgh humIdIty And and disease, which was recently published.” grown each year, Robertson says her applied tAkIng questIons from fArmers. Sometimes she feels like a jack of all research is just as critically important. “I love those summer months,” says trades, depending on what diseases are “At the end of the day, growers are the Robertson, an assistant professor of plant rearing their heads. Each growing season most important people to me,” she says. “I pathology with research and extension is completely different, which makes want to help them grow the healthiest, best responsibilities in field crop diseases. Robertson’s job challenging. Her current hit quality, highest yielding crops they can.” “I’ll take those days over any other.” list includes anthracnose, sudden death syn- Robertson does conduct some basic She listens carefully to questions drome, Phytopthora root rot and Goss’s wilt. research. One of her Ph.D. students modi- posed by corn and soybean growers. A common thread through her work is fied a way to evaluate soybean lines for mul- Many times they are seeds that germinate providing better management information tigene resistance to Phytopthora root rot, into new research. to growers. For her, it’s rewarding, especially making it easier and more objective. They’re Take white mold. when she’s working closely with farmers using the method to screen plants and look “2009 was a bad year for the disease. and agronomists. for new areas of potential resistance. In 2011, many growers will return to “The best part is teaching people how Besides farmers’ questions, she also those hard-hit fields,” says Robertson. to diagnose the different diseases and gets asked about her work by people who “The Iowa Soybean Association recently talking about the management tactics haven’t a clue what a plant pathologist does. funded a proposal of ours to research available. I listen to growers who tell me “I simply tell them I’m a plant doctor,” ways to improve white mold manage- how they’ve managed disease problems Robertson says. “I tell them sick plants ment. A lot of the ideas in our proposal over the years. We share ideas. I’ve had can affect productivity, which can impact came from growers, including evaluating people tell me something they learned our food supply in many ways. My job the effectiveness of a biological control really helped them and saved them thou- is to help plants stay healthy.” and of spraying fungicides.” sands of dollars. That’s the best.” Another good example resulted from A majority of today’s plant pathologists hailstorms that shredded corn fields in work at the genetic and molecular levels to SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 5 Photo: Bob Elbert ChAnging LivEs TAkING CHANCES BY KIMlE BRINgS THE INTENSITy, ENTHuSIASM By melea reicks licht OF ENTREPRENEuRSHIP TO THE ClASSROOM Kevin Kimle knew he was taking “A light bulb went off about the power tools similar to mutual funds for grain a leap of faith. of creating software to create efficiencies producers. He had a great job working for Pioneer in how agriculture worked. It was a cost- “Kevin was always thinking of unique Hi-Bred International in business devel- effective way to move and share informa- ways to address problems in our industry, opment. He negotiated deals and per- tion between buyers and sellers. My and he gave me the entrepreneurial fever formed market analyses. In doing so he friend, Dave Krog, and I had fresh ideas as well,” Krog says. “He had a vision that used one of the first web browsers ever on how that could play out,” Kimle says. the Internet could bring significant value created to read reports from the U.S. Kimle and Krog (’80 agronomy, MS ’82 to agriculture and in particular bring effi- Department of Agriculture. economics, PhD ’88 economics) left ciencies and scalabilities to identity-pre- Kimle (’91 economics) began thinking: Pioneer to build the business that would served grain production and contracting. This technology has enormous potential become E-Markets. The Internet-based Kevin was very confident and had a pas- to serve the agriculture industry at large. electronic commerce system was the first sion for the vision and what we were He knew he could make it happen. He of its kind in agriculture and food indus- doing. It was a lot of fun to work with understood it was a leap of faith, but he try. Following the success of E-Markets, Kevin and build a business from scratch.” had faith in his idea, his abilities and the Kimle launched Decision Commodities, a It was this type of vision and initiative people he would gather around him. company that provided risk management that made Kimle a stand out choice for the 6 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 f A c u lt y + s tA f f Kevin Kimle draws on his experience with startups including his own, E-markets, when teaching students about entrepreneurship. Bruce Rastetter Chair in Entrepreneurship From teaching courses to one-on- But he says it all comes down to one in the College of Agriculture and Life one student consultations, Kimle’s job guiding principle—changing people’s lives Sciences, which he filled in 2009. description is packed. A few items for the better. Rastetter, an Iowa agricultural entre- from his to-do list include: “It’s about creating dialogue in the right preneur who created Heartland Pork and n Advise students through idea place at the right time. We can talk technol- Hawkeye Renewables, endowed the posi- creation and business planning. ogy or building companies, but it is about tion as a way to infuse entrepreneurship n Connect students with people changing peoples’ lives in a lot of into the university experience. mentors and resources. different ways, whether it be professors, “I gave the gift with the goal of having n Build outreach opportunities professionals or students,” Kimle says. a chair that taught classes on entrepre- to foster entrepreneurship neurship, but more importantly that with alumni and professionals. would get students excited about entre- n Design and lead international oNlINE ExTRaS: www.ag.iastate.edu/stories preneurship, about why it’s important entrepreneurship experiences. What makes a hawkeye and the opportunities it provides. Kevin n Teach introduction to agricultural invest in Cyclones? Photo: ISu Foundation reflects that. You can see it in his students marketing and entrepreneurship learn more about entrepreneur and when you sit in on his classes or visit in agriculture courses. bruce rastetter, member of the with him,” Rastetter says. “The challenge Iowa board of regents and university of Iowa alum that is continuing to grow when you have suc- endowed kimle’s position. cess. Kevin is asking people to participate in offering internships and scholarships, collaborating with partners on campus and continuing to raise private and pub- lic funds to support their efforts.” Kimle says he loves the challenge of grooming future entrepreneurs at ISU. KEvin KimLE doEsn’t m “They took a chance on me,” Kimle inCE Words admits. “There’s a difference between Kimle uses a merit point system to evaluate his students like mos real-world experience and creating aca- But, he takes it a step farther by offe t professors. ring this demic experiences. At its core, this is an “interpretation” of students’ final letter grades. enterprise-building job. But aspects are different than any other job I’ve had.” a your work is fantastic. i’m energized by you r words, Kimle got his first taste of running ideas and actions. you took this assi gnment seriously, a business as a teenager when his dad exceeded expectations and exhibite d great effort and turned over his family’s hog operation insight. i would be proud to show this work to others. to him on their diversified farm in B solid work, but it lacks sizzle. your work was diligent Nebraska. His degree in agricultural according to the assignment and standards and was business from the University of Nebraska completed on time. some parts of the work lacked and a series of internships with small completeness or thorough attentio n to detail. startups helped him graduate from C i’m getting a little bored reading your assignm “shovel mechanic” to entrepreneur. ent or listening to your pre- sentation. parts of the assignment He also worked a stint for Senator were missing, incomplete and lack careful attention. clearly, this coul ing d have used more effort and cari Dave Karnes in Washington, D.C., before ng. he earned his master’s in economics from D i’m agitated that you wasted my time. there are major missing piec in the assignment, and it’s difficult es Iowa State under the direction of Marvin to detect much concern on your part about your work. Hayenga, whom Kimle still considers a trusted adviser. F ugh. you’re wasting my time and yours. you just plain did not try. f A c u lt y + s tA f f SEEING STUDENTS By ed Adcock through PArEnts’ EyEs Barb osborn sees a little of her children and calm the fears of nervous parents is in each student she advises. legendary.” Her abilities have garnered Osborn says helping her children cope her the recognition of her peers. She won with transferring to Iowa State made her college awards for learning community a better adviser for the horti- coordination in 2009, student recruitment culture department. and retention in 2006 and outstanding She’s the department’s head advising in 2005. She was awarded the adviser, assigning students University Award for Academic Advising to advisers based on their Impact in 2010. commodity interests, such Students frequently hang out in her office. as turfgrass or fruit crops. But “Some have likened Barb to the kindly she keeps students who might camp counselor, dispensing equal amounts not know what area they are of guidance and support, and when neces- interested in. sary, a dash of tough love,” Iles says. “I take a lot of the transfer Osborn’s parents got her involved in students too, because I really horticulture. Helping them garden gave enjoy looking at their tran- way to working at a golf course in high scripts to figure out how to school. Turfgrass and landscaping are still Photo: Bob Elbert best utilize their courses for her personal interests. a degree,” Osborn says. She earned a bachelor’s degree in agri- Three of Osborn’s children cultural education from Iowa State in 1983. are Iowa Staters. Her oldest Osborn applied her training to restore the Barb Osborn (right) is the horticulture department’s award-winning student adviser. Helping members daughter graduated with a food science vocational agriculture program at Dexfield of the horticulture club with a fundraiser is just one degree, her second oldest daughter is a High, using horticulture to attract urban of many ways she earns accolades for supporting students and their families. senior in the College of Human Sciences students. After earning a master’s degree and her older son will transfer to horti- in 1988 in ag education she taught com- culture’s turfgrass management program mercial horticulture at Des Moines Area “Some have likened this fall. All went to community colleges Community College before taking her pres- and she helped them plan their courses ent position in 1998. Barb to the kindly to get needed credits. Besides advising, Osborn teaches camp counselor, In a way, Osborn becomes part of each an orientation course in which seeking dispensing equal advisee’s extended family. employment is a key component. She sounds like a doting parent describing “It is not uncommon for me to have a amounts of guidance phone call from a parent at 10 o’clock at her goals for students. and support, and night or an email for no other reason than “I want to see our students in a better to check in or to say, ‘Hi,’” she says. place when they leave than when they when necessary, a “Developing a rapport with them makes come in, and by that I want them to be dash of tough love.” me a better adviser because I understand employed,” Osborn says. where the student comes from.” Jeff Iles, horticulture department chair, says Osborn’s “ability to assist students 8 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 p e r e n n i A l fAV o r i t e CHANGING dirECtions Robert Jolly, emeritus professor of economics, worked “seven years, dawn to dusk” to help usher Iowa agriculture By susan thompson through the farm crisis, and secure additional funding for ag research. WEll-KNOWN ECONOMIST SEES IOWA Ag THROugH CRISIS TO NEW OPPORTuNITIES Photo: Bob Elbert In his 32 years at Iowa State, Robert Jolly was very involved in developing programs Now international activities occupy had several job titles and a wide array of to help farmers, lenders and communities some of Jolly’s retirement days. He works duties. “One of the things I always appre- survive the farm crisis. I agreed to a part- part-time for an Irish dairy and beef ciated was being able to change direction time position to look at strategic issues nutrition company he describes as “a without leaving town,” he jokes. the Experiment Station was facing, since second generation entrepreneurial busi- Jolly’s most recent direction at Iowa state funding for agri- ness, using wonderfully State was leading the Agricultural Entre- cultural research had innovative technology.” “When I look back at preneurship Initiative. languished.” He also is involved with “Dean Woteki asked me and Steve There was a strong the things that were a startup non-governmental Nissan to put some wheels under the initia- sense Iowa didn’t the most rewarding, organization based in tive,” Jolly says. “We started with a multi- want to go through it was usually pulling Chicago that provides pronged approach, working with faculty another farm crisis, together people and financing and technical and students, developing educational and Jolly saw that as money to work on a assistance to firms in materials and building entrepreneurship a good opportunity to project. I have always dairy supply chains. into the curriculum and activities.” increase funding for gotten the greatest “The idea is to help That was in 2005. It wasn’t long before agricultural research. satisfaction taking farmers in developing Jolly realized he was in familiar territory. He and others countries grow their the university to the “People sometimes think it’s puzzling developed a legislative farm businesses and people.” professors get involved in entrepreneur- proposal to double the cooperatives while ship. But if you look at what we do, we state’s appropriation providing an acceptable look for opportunities, find money, develop for agricultural research, and garnered rate of return for investors,” he says. programs and fill needs. Those are entre- enough political support that the proposal These international efforts follow the preneurial activities,” he says. was approved. For Jolly that success was same pattern Jolly exhibited during his Jolly was hired by Iowa State in 1979 as a “career highlight.” time at Iowa State. an extension economist, but soon added International work was another impor- “When I look back at the things that research and teaching to his responsibili- tant part of Jolly’s Iowa State career. As were the most rewarding, it was usually ties. In 1985, an administrative position Eastern Europe began to collapse, he pulling together people and money to came his way. worked on projects in the former Soviet work on a project,” he says. “I have “Dean Kolmer asked me to move into Union, followed by more recent efforts always gotten the greatest satisfaction an assistant dean position. At the time, I in China and India. taking the university to the people.” SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 9 f A c u lt y n e w s + s e r V i c e KLing APPointEd to HONEYMAN ADDS INTERNATIONAl FOOD POlICy RESEARCH INSTITuTE BOARD NEW DUTIES WITH Catherine Kling, professor of economics, BioCEntury FArm, began serving a three-year term in January on LEoPoLd CEntEr the board of trustees of the International food Mark honeyman, professor of animal science and coordinator policy research Institute. of Isu research and demonstration farms, has been named IfprI is an international associate director of the bioCentury research farm where he agricultural research will integrate biomass field research within the farm’s opera- organization headquar- tions and help ensure compatibility of the farm’s activities tered in washington, with other Isu research farms. honeyman also has assumed d.C., with a mission of responsibilities of interim director of the leopold Center for providing policy solutions sustainable Agriculture. former interim director lois Wright Morton, sociology, that reduce poverty and stepped down to lead a regional research project on climate and agriculture. honeyman end hunger and malnutri- has coordinated Isu’s research and demonstration farms network for 26 years. he tion worldwide. served on the original task force that helped define the leopold Center in the 1980s. Photo: Bob Elbert hEArty HELLOS FACULTY NAMED FELLOWS FEhr honorEd By OF NATIONAL SOCIETIES Nick Dolce joined the college development Maynard hogberg, animal science, AMERICAN SOYBEAN office as a director of development. dolce n comes from the university of Illinois at spring- chair and professor, American society ASSOCIATION field where he was associate director of of Animal science Charles f. distinguished professor of development and assistant athletic director n Bryony Bonning, entomology Agronomy Walt Fehr is the recipient for development. professor, American of the 2011 American Association for the soybean Association Joe hannan was named the Isu extension Advancement of science special meritorious commercial horticulture specialist for central n Steven Fales, agronomy service Award. fehr and western Iowa. hannan, who is housed in the professor, American was recognized for dallas County extension office, is responsible Association for the his “innovative plant for providing commercial growers with educa- Advancement of science breeding program tional resources and will conduct research at n Patrick Schnable, agron- utilizing traditional Photo: Bob Elbert the Iowa state horticulture farm near gilbert omy professor, American plant breeding methods along with and the Armstrong research farm near lewis. Association for the biotechnology to enhance the genetic Advancement of science traits of soybeans.” fehr’s research n Jonathan Wendel, ecology, evolution has produced more than 200 food grade and organismal biology chair and pro- soybean varieties grown throughout Fond FAREWELLS fessor, American Association for the Advancement of science the united states, and he was the first to develop heart-healthy Rich Bundy, vice president of development at the soybeans free of trans fat. Isu foundation and former college development team leader, accepted a leadership position at the university of vermont as vice president of development and alumni relations and Ceo of the university of vermont foundation. KENEAly RECEIVES INTERNATIONAl Rich Pirog, associate director of the leopold AnimAL AgriCuLturE AWArd Douglas Kenealy, the harman professor for Center for sustainable Agriculture, became excellence in teaching and learning in the senior associate director of the Center for department of Animal science, received the sustainable food systems at michigan state bouffault International Animal Agriculture university in may. he will lead the new center’s Award from the American society of Animal efforts in the socioeconomic aspects of food science. kenealy has led five international travel systems, including production, marketing and courses and mentored students from 11 coun- economic development. tries on Isu exchange programs. kenealy is a les lewis, chair of the entomology department, university professor, professor-in-charge of the retired in december. he had served as chair dairy science curriculum and section leader for since 2008. prior to that he was a research animal science instruction. he is shown at right leader and scientist with the usdA Agricultural (in red) planting trees with Isu students while research service. visiting trakia university in stara Zagora, bulgaria. Contributed Photo 10 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 students “It’s not work to me. All my life I’ve spent the day doing something else and then I got to go home and farm. It’s a way of life and it’s what I love to do.” THE BUCk By Barbara mcBreen Won’t STOP HERE Photo: Barbara McBreen Alle Buck, center top, is the third generation of her family to pursue an agriculture degree at Iowa State. Her parents, Roger (’75 farm operations) and Nylene, and her grandparents, Don (’49 farm operations) and THIRD gENERATION IOWA STATER WIll CARRy Ruth recently restored their 120-year-old barn listed ON FAMIly FARM’S PRICElESS TRADITION on the Iowa Barn Foundation All-State Barn Tour. In 1894, Alle Buck’s great, great grandfather “My three uncles and my dad majored several students she’s worked with in clubs, got off the train near Rhodes, Iowa and in agriculture,” Buck says. “It wasn’t easy learning communities and judging teams. bought a farm with his brother. Today, for women to pursue degrees in agriculture She’s also a known volunteer. She has Buck calls it home. back then, like it is now.” dedicated a lot of time to the Block and “We’ve farmed this land for over 100 After graduation this summer, Buck Bridle club, and this spring she served on years and it’s in my blood,” says Buck, a plans to build and run a swine finishing the college’s strategic planning committee. senior in animal science. facility with her brother-in-law. Raising She felt strongly about providing input, Buck is proud of her fifth-generation livestock has taught her about life. The especially from the student’s perspective. farm and even more proud that she’s a key, she says, is putting their needs first. “I really care about Iowa State and I have third-generation Iowa State student in the “If you take care of them, they’ll take a vested interest in its future,” Buck says. College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. care of you,” Buck says. Coming to Iowa State opened doors for Her grandfather and grandmother met She knows farming isn’t an easy business Buck. She credits the learning community at Iowa State and together they raised six to get into, but it’s what she’d like to pursue. experience for connecting her with life- children who all attended Iowa State, but The Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative long friends. Last summer she traveled to she’s the first woman to pursue a career helped Buck understand the importance of Greece with the entrepreneurship group in agriculture. global markets, creative thinking and inno- and also visited Rome, Paris, London, vation. The initiative also helped her Frankfurt and Munich. Recent grad Photo: Barbara McBreen apply for a Beginning Farmer Loan “I’ve traveled to 15 states and five Alle Buck took out a Beginning to rent grazing pasture for her cattle. countries and I’d never been on an air- Farmer Loan “It’s not work to me,” Buck says. plane before I came to college,” Buck says. to rent grazing area to raise “All my life I’ve spent the day doing Buck says she’s found her college expe- cattle. She’s also something else and then I got to go rience rewarding because she’s developed working with a business partner home and farm. It’s a way of life leadership and organizational skills, met to build a swine and it’s what I love to do.” with agricultural leaders and gathered a finishing facility. Her sense of community is evident. community of friends. It’s an experience and Walking across campus, she greets a community that she calls, “priceless.” SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 11 students sustAining mEmoriEs, NOURISHING THE FUTURE By Barbara mcBreen m ixing, kneading and smelling McCarty came up with the idea, “I love going to the grocery store to the aroma of baking bread in which must be kept top secret until after find the latest products,” says McCarty. the farm home where she grew the competition, after taking a gluten- “I can’t resist buying those products up is a special memory for Krista McCarty. free cooking class. She says people with because I want to know what’s in them.” It’s how she remembers her mom, Celiac disease, also known as gluten She monitors the latest twitters on who died of cancer when McCarty was intolerance, don’t have as many choices new food products, intellectual property, just 11 years old. in the marketplace so products like this recalls and industry news. To satisfy her “We would spend Saturday mornings bak- could have a competitive advantage. insatiable appetite to understand food ing bread, just the two of us,” McCarty says. “Our challenge is finding the right product development, she’s planning In part, those memories inspired formula of flours and leavening agents to attend graduate school. McCarty, a senior, to pursue a major in to replicate the properties of gluten,” Next year McCarty will serve food science. She thought about becoming McCarty says. as co-president of the Iowa State a nurse, but discovered food science after Last fall, she and another product devel- University Colleges Against Cancer taking a tour of General Mills when she opment team took a probiotic gum prod- Organization. This year she led the was 13 years old. uct to the American Association of Cereal advocacy and education committee She’s continued her focus on grains into Chemists competition. The team took for the Relay For Life in March. her college career. This spring McCarty fourth place in the final round and gained McCarty worked on displays for and the Iowa State University Food the interest of several companies. The gum the event and one display included Product Development Team entered a glu- was developed with a corn zein, a protein a paragraph from committee members ten-free item into a national product devel- found in maize, which is environmentally about why they participate. McCarty opment competition to be held in June. friendly and promotes oral health. posted this: “I Relay for my mom. She passed away from her three and a half year battle with cancer when I was 11. I Relay for all children, so they may never experience the loss of a parent to cancer. I Relay for all families who must go through the fight of having a family member with cancer. I support the fight against cancer because I do not want anyone to go through the struggle of being told, ‘You have cancer.’ I Relay to encourage everyone to have hope because one day we will find a cure!” Krista McCarty learned to love baking at an early age, making bread each Saturday with her mom. McCarty honors her mother’s memory through her service in the ISU Colleges Against Cancer organization while she pursues a major in food science. Photo: Bob Elbert 12 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 students tAKing on THE BUSINESS oF FArming By Barbara mcBreen E ven though he’s managing a farm to help calculate cost, returns, two hours away from Ames while markets, outlooks and prices. tackling a full class schedule, Andy He says the conference is just Edson doesn’t see himself as an entrepre- one of many resources offered neur. He says it’s how you approach busi- at Iowa State. ness that defines entrepreneur. “It gives you the tools to “Some people think that anyone who evaluate the most profitable starts a business is an entrepreneur,” says options,” Edson says. Edson, a junior in agricultural business. Although he’s had to cut Photo: Suzanne Edson “An entrepreneur is someone who is inno- back on club activities, he’s vative and tries to do things differently.” continued to stay active in Edson, who is part of the fifth genera- the National Agri-marketing tion to grow up on his family farm, plans Association. In April, the to partner with his dad and perhaps run team attended the national Andy Edson is always looking for ways to take his the operation in the future. It’s a transition competition in Kansas City farming operation to new heights. The junior in agricultural business farms 600 acres near they have slowly begun. Edson started and presented a marketing Nashua, Iowa, while taking a full class load. farming 14 acres three years ago on their plan for a sub-clinical mastitis farm near Nashua, Iowa. In 2009, a neigh- treatment. Edson says the bor asked him to farm another 600 acres. product doesn’t contain antibiotics, so Network student club offers resources “Paying rent and writing bigger checks dairy producers wouldn’t have to dispose and opportunities to meet with farmers was a new experience, but that’s how I of milk after applying the product. and experts. learn,” Edson says. Edson also gained marketing experi- “There is a lot of interest in the student Variable rate planting, auto-steer and ence during his summer internship at club,” says Mike Duffy, economics professor, field mapping analysis are just a few of the Insta-Pro International. The company director of the Beginning Farmer Center technologies Edson hopes to set up on his sells oilseed processing and dry extruder and club adviser. family’s farm in the future. equipment throughout the world. More than 50 percent of Iowa’s farmers “There’s a lot of room to grow with “I collected data on existing markets are over age 55. Duffy says resources like technology and that’s what I’m hoping and investigated possible ways they could the Beginning Farmer Center and the stu- to bring to the operation,” Edson says. expand their markets,” Edson says. dent club are important because they can This year Edson attended the Beginning Edson’s story isn’t typical. Less than help retiring farmers connect with students Farmer’s Conference where he learned 15 percent of the college’s graduates plan like Edson and others who want to farm. about the Ag Decision Maker program. to go into production farming. For students It offers numerous decision-making tools who want to farm, the Beginning Farmers SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 13 students “When you put on Cy’s costume, it transforms you. It’s hard to describe, but you instantly perform.” trying Cy By Barbara mcBreen ON FOR siZE JuNIOR IN Ag BuSINESS FINDS A PERFECT FIT Cy isn’t shy. Cy dances, hugs and throws once before he graduated and say he’d high-fives to enthuse and entertain Iowa been Cy for 15 minutes. After attending State University fans. a meeting before try-outs he decided to Matt Burt, a junior in agricultural take the challenge and compete. business, has been watching Cy all his “They gave us directions on how to plan life. His parents and older brother went a five minute skit,” Burt says. “It was very to Iowa State, and he grew up attending competitive.” Iowa State games. Along with running with the Iowa State Burt always knew he would be a Cyclone. flag and performing the Cy strut, Burt and He never guessed he would be Cy. his friends put together a winning skit. Last year he went to the mascot squad They had Cy working out to the theme tryout so he could try on Cy’s suit just song from the Rocky movie; challenging 14 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 students volunteers like Burt whose dedication in showmanship. The Marshalltown and enthusiasm make Cy shine. native was raised on a farrow-to-finish Squad leader Noelle Lichty, a senior and row-crop farm and has shown live- in marketing, also appreciates Burt’s stock at the Tama County Fair and the performances. Iowa State Fair. “I can always tell when Matt is in the Burt plans to pursue a career in agri- Cy suit because he interacts with fans and culture and hopes to go into farming he is always entertaining,” Lichty says. someday. He’s had an internship as an Once students qualify to perform as Agri-Gold sales representative and as a Cy they are eligible to keep the position crop scout. After he graduates he’d like until graduation, which means Burt will to get experience in banking, lending perform the Cy dance until he graduates or commodity trading. in 2012. He says he was looking forward “I chose agricultural business because to attending the games, but was surprised there are so many things you can do with how different it feels to be on the field it,” Burt says. and part of the game. For now, he’ll continue to turn any- “It’s fun and you feel more involved in time he hears a call for Cy. He’s always Iowa State athletics as the mascot,” Burt ready to suit up as the Cyclone hero to Photo: Steve Pope says. “I traveled to the Kansas State foot- strut, dance, offer high-fives and even ball game and I thought it was amazing crowd surf. walking into Arrowhead Stadium.” Burt’s most memorable moment, oNlINE ExTRaS: www.ag.iastate.edu/stories “crowd surfing,” Burt says. “My friends rival fans to arm wrestle, a tug of war, a picked me up and I was passed halfway Check out more photos of burt strutting his Cy stuff. race; and finally beating a University of up the student section.” Iowa fan in football. Burt has tried to do the Cy dance for After making the elite team of seven friends without the costume, but it just Photo: Bob Elbert students, his first performance was a isn’t the same. two-day tour promoting Iowa State with “When you put on Cy’s costume, it the athletic department’s coaches and transforms you. It’s hard to describe, but administrators. Traveling in a first-class you instantly perform,” Burt says. tour bus around the state, Burt says, “was Burt has also put his dance moves to amazingly cool.” work for a good cause. He was part of the Cy the Cardinal, which is the mascot’s Alpha Gamma Rho team during the ISU official name, first hit the field at a 1954 Dance Marathon held in January to raise Iowa State homecoming game. Cy was the money for the Children’s Miracle Network winning idea in a nationwide contest to and the University of Iowa Children’s find a mascot to fit the “Cyclone” role. Cy Hospital. The event raised more than performs at every Cyclone sporting event $260,000 for the charities. and several off-campus special events. “It was special to hear the kids’ stories Mascot squad members don’t get paid or and how the money is helping their fami- receive special recognition, says Mary Pink, lies,” Burt says. When Matt Burt, a member of Alpha Gamma Rho, isn’t suited up as Cy he is involved Iowa State University associate athletics Although he’s never auditioned for in Greek Week and ISU Dance Marathon director for marketing. She appreciates any other role, he has had experience raising money for children’s charities. SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 15 student AchieVement FOOD PANTRY For studEnts, By studEnts OPENS ITS DOORS As part of a class assignment, students in the department of food science and human nutrition transfer and major Change learning Community were asked to think about ways to help support food assistance needs in the community. the result was planning an on-campus food pantry. the shop (students helping our peers) opened in february in the food sciences building. pictured are the organization’s officers (front to back) andrew Pugh, Sarah Schwanebeck, hailey Boudreau, Melissa Van Norden, Kelsey Webb, Kara Moss, amanda haffarnan and Tania lee. the opening of the shop garnered national television coverage and a spot in an Inside higher ed article. watch the video and read more about the shop at www.ag.iastate.edu/stories. Photo: Brenna Wetzler STUDENT JUDGING TEAMS Ag And LiFE rAnK high sCiEnCEs n Turf Club, first place, Collegiate turf bowl MAN AND WOMAN Competition golf Course superintendents Association of America (ninth win in 10 years) OF THE YEAR n Intercollegiate Dairy Judging Team, Elizabeth Baudler, senior in animal science, and first place, Accelerated genetics Jacob hunter, senior in agricultural and life sci- Intercollegiate dairy Judging Contest ences education, were named the 2011 College of n livestock Judging Team, high team overall Agriculture and life sciences Ag woman and Ag northern lights Contest, high team honors man of the year as part of the Ag day celebration sioux empire farm show, and second in march. Awardees are selected by their peers on high team overall at Aksarben the college student council based on “recognizing n Crops Judging Team, first place Ag a true ambassador of agriculture that positively knowledge bowl, second place Crops promotes agriculture through college clubs and Contest north American Colleges and industry relations and shows a passion for the Photo: Barbara McBreen teachers of Agriculture agricultural and life sciences industry.” n Soil Judging Team, first place, American society of Agronomy region 5 Collegiate soil Judging Contest HAIL TO thE ChiEF n Dairy Products Evaluation Team, second in team all-product at the 89th national Collegiate dairy Dakota hoben (left), senior in agricultural products evaluation Contest business, was elected president of the n Food Product Development government of the student body in Team, fourth in the American march. he and vice president Jared Association of Cereal Chemists Knight, junior in political science, product development contest won the executive slate with a platform focused on “the three ‘Cs’: clubs, classroom and community.” Photo: ISu Daily 16 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 ENTREPRENEuR Ia l S PIRIT LEGACY OF EntrEPrEnEurshiP FArmEr EntrEPrEnEurs “our agriculture and life sciences alumni have begun an entrepre- IMPROVE COMMuNITy VITAlITy neurial tradition at Iowa state university. twenty percent of our alumni have started for-profit businesses. part of our challenge and A substantial number of Iowa farm families start and operate opportunity is instilling that tradition in students by connecting businesses in addition to their regular farming operations, them with alumni and one other.” according to an ISU Extension study conducted in 2007. From —kevin kimle, director, Agricultural entrepreneurship Initiative equipment repair and construction to seed sales and financial services, farmers were finding numerous ways to increase their A recent survey of Iowa State University alumni who graduated income and improve their community’s social and economic between 1986-2006 proves the tradition exists. vitality. Responses n 16 percent of ISU grads started at least one business from 144 farmer n Most common: Firms serving agricultural markets followed entrepreneurs who by retail and information technology. participated in the n Undergraduates from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences 2007 Iowa Farm and and the College of Design had the highest entrepreneurship rates Rural Life Poll show n The entrepreneurship rate among Iowa State University more than half of their graduates is more than double the rate of the general population businesses had been n On average, alumni founded their first business 10 years in operation for more after graduating than 20 years, and n Nearly 79 percent of all businesses were still in operation (this is a 25 percent of the much higher survival rate than the national average of 31 percent) businesses were n On average, entrepreneurs and former entrepreneurs construction or retail companies. The farmer entrepreneurs earn more than their non-entrepreneur counterparts reported their businesses provided 369 full-time and 201 part- n Nearly 20,000 businesses were created (223,000 jobs). time jobs in their communities. About one-third of the proprietors About 72 percent established in Iowa or Midwest. were interested in growing their businesses to have an impact n These companies had 2007 revenues of $64 billion locally, statewide or nationally. LICENSING PoWErhousE Agriculture and life sciences play a central soybean breeding. In fiscal year 2010, the technologies role in Iowa State University’s reputation top licensed technologies for discoveries that included: for moving research discoveries into the in agriculture and life sciences included: n A genetic test to marketplace. n A sweet, disease-resistant identify dwarfism In 2007, a watermelon variety in cattle national report on n A natural pre-emergence weed n Alternatives to technology transfer control for lawns and gardens antibiotics in animals called Iowa State a n A method to increase and n Genes to protect soybeans “licensing powerhouse” maintain muscle mass in humans from disease caused and a model of economic development n A precise fertilizer application by Phytophthora activity. A key reason: ISU’s long-estab- system, the Impellicone, that reduces n Genetic traits to lished service to agriculture and other anhydrous ammonia used on crops improve pork tenderness industries through extension, outreach n Genes and genetic markers n Mobile RNA signals to and research partnerships that resulted in for improved reproductive enhance plant growth personal, trusted relationships. traits in animals and development Those diverse relationships pay off. In fiscal year 2010, Since 2003, 42 percent of all The ISU Research Foundation maintains agriculture and life Iowa State University patents (81) a portfolio of 482 active license and sciences faculty were have been issued for discoveries option agreements—two-thirds are issued six patents and in biotechnology, life sciences plant germplasm and most are products of filed five others, for and agriculture. Impellicone SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 17 ENTREPRENEuRIal S PIRIT Q: i’vE got grEAt idEAs And PAssion. noW WhAt? A: LISTEN TO ALUMNI ENTREPRENEURS TELL WHAT HELPED PAVE THEIR WAY TO SUCCESS. Do you believe there’s something inher- What’s the best decision you made as how important are mentors? Who was ent about agriculture or life sciences that a college student at Iowa State that a mentor to you and what made them (pardon the express) provides a rich soil influenced your life as an entrepreneur? invaluable to you? for growing entrepreneurs? J. Lyell Clarke: One was my decision Clarke: I had three people that were most Roger Underwood: Absolutely! Agricul- to get a graduate degree and working for important. My father taught me about ture and life sciences are changing rapidly Wayne Rowley, professor of entomology, business and hard work. Wayne Rowley due to the many “input” advancements in who became a very good friend of mine. about hard work and science—it’s because seed (genetics), equipment and services If I hadn’t gone to grad school I’m not of Wayne that it took me until my mid- and “output” advances such as food, sure I’d be where I am now. I wouldn’t forties to realize not everyone worked on energy and feed utilization. In all of these have the appreciation for the research Saturdays. My father-in-law about the changes there is unending opportunity and development and technology that importance of family. Each mentor will for entrepreneurs to create new value. we’ve made part of our company. provide a different piece of the puzzle Entrepreneurs thrive when any market is for you, will see potential in you. changing rapidly so the ag and life sciences Murray Wise: There used to be a weekly, markets are ripe for entrepreneurship. required noncredit class called Agricul- Underwood: Mentors are critical to one’s ture 100 that brought in successful ag success. Mentors can help smooth the Charles Sukup: There really is something professionals that had a major impact rough ride when making operational with agriculture and the people in it that on me. Dwane Sandage’s (of the Sandage decisions or thinking through the big see the day-in and day-out risk that con- farmland management companies) presen- and small decisions that will arise. Vallie tributes to an entrepreneurial attitude. tation was so unique and so creative. It Pellett, a no-nonsense local farmer, taught Farming is being independent and being had such a strong influence on me that me the value of hard work, the basics of an entrepreneur. You’re in control of many I ended up going to work for him three production agriculture and how simple things, but in the big picture you’re not in or four years after graduating. As a result decisions can be critical decisions. Paul control of weather, government programs I bought a portion of his company and Pellett, a fertilizer and ag chemical or markets. You have to focus on what that turned into Westchester Group, a retailer, taught me the value of making you can control. That is a good analogy successful asset management venture. money creatively. Paul taught me that for all sorts of entrepreneurs. the best money you will ever make is 18 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 Contributed Photos John “Lyell” Clarke III (PhD ’88 Charles Sukup (’76 ag engineer- Roger Underwood (’80 ag busi- Murray Wise (’73 plant pathol- entomology), President and ing, M.S. ’82), President, Sukup ness), founder and former CEO ogy), CEO, Chairman, West- CEO, Clarke, global mosquito Manufacturing, grain bins and Becker Underwood, non-pesti- chester Group, Inc., agricultural control and aquatic services drying equipment cide specialty chemical and asset management biological products the money you never spend. My father, Ray Clarke: Passion is not overrated—that’s will realize you are serious. Most are Underwood, taught me about the value of what it is all about. We talk about passion happy to let you tap into their knowledge. the customer, including sales and market- as a core value of our company. We are ing strategies. I learned from my dad that passionate about public health. Our Underwood: Don’t be afraid to take a the best idea can be worthless without employees will do anything if there is a calculated leap at creating value from an loyal customers who are served properly. major emergency. It’s all hands on deck. idea or strategy. Always be on alert for an If you’re not passionate about what you’re opportunity that needs to be exploited as how do you make the world listen to you looking for in a job, if it doesn’t fit your a new business or new product. But when when you know you’ve got a great idea? value system and you’re not passionate you see that window of opportunity, go Sukup: There is too much shouting in this about it, then you need to find another through it sooner rather than later. There world. You can’t just shout louder. You job or you’ll be miserable. is always some other entrepreneur who will need to be consistent and persevere. You see the opportunity and capitalize on it. need to show up and not give up. Sow What have you found to be the most the seed all over the place and a few will underrated skill or resource for being Sukup: Keep trying. Work hard. Be honest. fall in good soil and take root and grow. entrepreneurial? Be moral. You get ahead by helping others Sukup: Perseverance and get ahead. Go for it. The worst advice is Underwood: Keep it simple. I found that contrarian thinking to be a risk taker. There are a lot of bad I needed to be able to explain my idea in Wise: Accounting ideas out there, too, and people need to so few words that the listener needed to Underwood: Financial under- figure out what is a good idea. Successful be able to hear my idea and explain it standing, managing cash flow entrepreneurs never felt like they were right back to me—otherwise it was too Clarke: Salesmanship taking a big risk. They saw the need and complicated. had the vision. What’s the most inspiring thing Is “passion” an overrated word in you could say to someone who Wise: If you are starting a new business the entrepreneurial world or is it still is a fledgling entrepreneur, or who venture you probably are underestimating at the heart of innovation? may be and doesn’t know it yet? the amount of capital you need. I cannot Wise: Passion is underrated. I firmly Clarke: Be prepared to work very hard. stress enough the need to be well capital- believe if you don’t have a passion for If you follow your heart and your passion, ized. Whatever you think you need, you what you’re about to embark on, your you’ll find it’s not hard work at all. You are probably undercapitalized by at least probability of success will be minimized. can’t wait to go to work. Don’t be afraid 50 percent. I know very few successful people in life to ask people to mentor you. If they that don’t have tremendous passion for know you’re interested in their industry, what they do. innovation or a particular market, they SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 19 ENTREPRENEuRIal S PIRIT GETTING A JUMP ON By melea reicks licht stArting THE COllEgE OF AgRICulTuRE neurship. “Donor, administration and of the entrepreneurial process and busi- AND lIFE SCIENCES DOESN’T faculty support is really important, but ness management. FOllOW TRENDS IN ENTREPRE- the growth in entrepreneurship education In an economics course, “Entrepre- NEuRIAl EDuCATION FOR at universities like Iowa State is ultimately neurship in Agriculture,” there is no text- uNDERgRADuATES IN AgRI- driven by the interest of the students.” book. Students use case studies to explore CulTuRE AND lIFE SCIENCES— The initiative was established in the entrepreneurial process and how to IT SETS THEM. 2005, by a $1.6 million gift from Roger develop their own business plans. At the As home to the Agricultural Entrepre- (’80 agricultural business) and Connie conclusion of the course, student teams neurship Initiative, Iowa State was the Underwood, of the Ames-based company present their ideas to a panel of experts and first university in the nation to have such Becker Underwood. the top three teams win a monetary prize. a program fostering agricultural business “Iowa State’s entrepreneurship classes An experimental course in small business development among students. can help show the curious student if he or management exposes students to entrepre- “Entrepreneurship is the fastest growing she is an entrepreneur that should strike neurial ideas early in their careers. Also segment of higher education,” says Kevin out on their own, or an entrepreneur that largely based on case studies, it covers man- Kimle, director of the initiative and Bruce should work inside someone else’s organi- agement skills and business development. Rastetter Chair in Agricultural Entrepre- zation,” says Roger Underwood. “Both Entrepreneurial issues are integrated types of entrepreneurs can deliver fresh into several courses across the college’s value by thinking smarter, acting faster and curriculum with special emphasis in Intro- out inventing or out maneuvering others.” duction to Agronomy (see page 4), Agricul- Photo: Bob Elbert (He shares more thoughts on entrepreneur- tural Selling and Farm Business Manage- ship in a Q&A session on page 18.) ment. The college is also offering a new Kimle and Stacey Noe are at the helm of experimental course on farm appraisals the Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initia- that includes entrepreneurial concepts. tive. Noe coordinates the efforts of the Students who desire official recogni- initiative, assists with advising students tion of their efforts can declare a minor and helps students design entrepreneurial in Entrepreneurial Studies. The minor experiences to meet their needs. requires entrepreneurship and related courses and experiential credits earned By the Books working alongside successful entrepre- Students in the Entrepreneurship in Agricul- Entrepreneurial education isn’t necessarily neurs. Noe and Kimle advise those ture course prepare for their final presentation in which student teams present business done by the book, but formal classroom students and connect them with entre- plans to a panel of experts. education helps build core competencies preneurs to earn their experiential credits. 20 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 uP Initiative coordinator Stacey Noe (left) helps students Carly Cummings and Michael Koenig find entrepreneurial experi- ences to match their interests. Cummings has been involved in a number of the initiative’s programs and Koenig was selected for the initiative’s new Student Incubator program. Photo: Barbara McBreen “Good connections are those with alumni to take his ideas for launching a mobile uct and develop marketing ideas. This year that have passion and are willing to share application to identify weeds, insects students were charged with finding a new and give back. We identify entrepreneurs and diseases to the next level. use for optical sensing technology. Koenig through online searches, conferences and The Student Incubator helps students and the winning team created a product tradeshows and through the alumni asso- develop a business plan for revenue-generat- called SmartChute using the technology to ciation database,” Noe says. “We look for ing or investment-ready firms by accelerating work with cattle. Faculty and entrepreneurs entrepreneurs from a variety of areas, and the process of idea creation, business devel- evaluate the teams based on creativity, inno- welcome interested alumni to contact us.” opment and planning. The program provides vation and value creation. Teams earn prizes The Agricultural Entrepreneurship coaching, mentoring, educational program- based on their performance. Students can Initiative also coordinates study abroad ming, access to subject matter experts and win cash, study abroad scholarships, dinner programs and domestic travel with an investors and other resources necessary with notable ag business leaders and Iowa emphasis on entrepreneurship. Seventy for early-stage venture development. State versus Iowa football tickets. students have participated in trips to “I first developed the concept for my “These opportunities are designed China, Germany, Greece and California. business in the ‘Entrepreneurship in Agri- to be challenging and mind-opening. New Zealand, Ireland and other U.S. culture’ class last semester,” says Koenig. “I We give students a chance to apply the locations are slated for future trips. am really excited to continue to develop the knowledge they’ve gained in the classroom business with all the support I’m receiving.” to real-life situations in the agriculture real-World Experience Koenig also was a member of the winning industry,” Noe says. Michael Koenig, senior in agricultural edu- team at the initiative’s 2011 Ag Innovation The Agricultural Entrepreneurship cation, has been selected for the initiative’s and Value Creation Competition. Fourteen Initiative will continue to expand entrepre- recently launched Student Incubator pro- student teams competed in the annual event, neurial experiences for undergraduates gram. He says the program will allow him which challenges students to create a prod- both in and outside the classroom. Koenig (right) and his business partners and fellow agriculture and life sciences students Holden Nyhus (left) and Stuart McCulloh won one of the top prizes in oNlINE ExTRaS: www.ag.iastate.edu/stories the statewide Pappajohn New Venture Business Plan Competition. They received visit the Agricultural $5,000 to help grow their venture Scout entrepreneurship Pro—a mobile application to identify Initiative online. weeds, insects and diseases. SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 21 ENTREPRENEuRIal S PIRIT INTERNSHIPS SHARPEN EntrEPrEnEuriAL EdgE By Barbara mcBreen W orking alongside the owner of a business two weeks after graduation. and learned how to partner and network company is standard practice for “I met a lot of people, including distrib- with them. We hope all our interns learn interns participating in the Agri- uters and suppliers, which turned out to about working with customers and run- cultural Entrepreneurship Initiative in the be significantly important when I opened ning a smart business,” Terrell says. College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. my own garden center,” Mairet says. Terrell says the interns also are a Stacy Noe, program coordinator for the Starting a business at the height of the resource for companies. initiative, manages the internship program. economic downturn was a challenge. But “The students add energy, new ideas It started with three students in 2007, and Mairet says he’s surviving because he views and the horticultural knowledge to help today more than 40 companies have partic- his business plan as a living document, our customers,” Terrell says. “The intern- ipated to support 20 internships annually. which means it could change. At some ships can lead to new hires for our com- “The biggest difference compared to point, Mairet says, he’d like to offer intern- pany. Just this year we hired a past intern typical internships is that these students are ships through his company. as a full-time assistant grower.” exposed to the challenges of running the “Entrepreneurs always warned me that it’s Dakota Hoben, a junior in agricultural business because they are involved in the rough,” Mairet says. “When I talk to students business, interned at the Iowa Agribusiness operation of the entire company,” Noe says. I tend to focus on that message, because if Export Partnership in Des Moines. One of Entrepreneurial mentors are matched they can hear those negatives and go for it the most important lessons he learned was with the right students for the best experi- anyway, they are true entrepreneurs.” that partnering with businesses abroad is ence. That match worked for Shane Mairet Kate Terrell, a nursery manager hard work and requires strong relationships. (’09 horticulture) when he interned at at Wallace’s Garden Center, mentored “Planning a trade mission requires a Wallace’s Garden Center in Bettendorf, Mairet. She says the interns get hands- lot of communication and trust,” Hoben Iowa. The internship served as a spring- on, real-world experiences. says. “I really learned to value those per- board for Mairet, who opened his own “Shane dealt with a lot of our vendors sonal interactions with trip participants as we strived to make sure all the Contributed Photo details for the business mission were ready to go.” This summer 17 interns are working throughout Iowa and as far away as Detroit. They will sharpen their business skills learning about landscaping, dairy processing, marketing and pro- cessing wine, turning algae into feed and making prosciutto. Shane Mairet opened Mairet’s Garden Center in Muscatine, Iowa, two weeks after graduating in hor- ticulture in 2009. He says the skills he learned and connections he made during his internships have helped as a business owner. Contributed Photo Iowa State University’s student chapter of the National Agri- Marketing Association has earned several national awards in recent years including Outstanding Chapter twice in the last five years and the 2011 John Deere Signature Award. PrACtiCE MAkES PERFECT By melea reicks licht undergraduate students are marketing and communications careers service, a business plan and pitching their exposed to practical marketing and by bringing in speakers from industry, ideas in a formal presentation. Team communication skills in the Iowa we take them on agency tours, do service members also earn three credits in agri- State student chapter of the National projects and provide networking opportu- cultural education and studies. Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA). nities that sometimes lead to internships The Iowa State student chapter earned Stacey Noe with the Agricultural and jobs after graduation.” the John Deere Signature Award for overall Entrepreneurship Initiative, and Lori The chapter’s marketing team competes points accrued for student participation, Youngberg, program assistant for the against other universities in an annual involvement in the national competition, college’s distance programs, advise the marketing competition that showcases scholarship awards and annual report group’s 60 students. the talent of Iowa State students on a at NAMA’s 2011 annual conference and “What we do in NAMA is directly appli- national stage. The competition gives trade show. Noe also has been recognized cable to what ag marketing professionals undergrads a chance to build and practice nationally by earning the Outstanding do,” says Noe. “We expose students to skills in developing a new product or Adviser award in 2007 and 2010. A sEAt At THE TABLE By ed Adcock Twice a year students get the chance to Agricultural Entrepre- neurs Roundtables quiz agribusiness leaders who have grown give students like their ideas into successful ventures at the Josie Rudolph, a 2009 Agricultural Entrepreneurs Roundtable grad in ag communi- cations, a chance to Event. Organizers invite a diverse group network with success- of entrepreneurs to have dinner and talk ful entrepreneurs like Bruce Rastetter of with college students. The professionals Hawkeye Renewables. vary by discipline, age and gender and represent new and established companies. Contributed Photo “The goal is to get students exposed to different forms of opportunity recogni- by the group of students at the roundtable. better business people than they otherwise tion and to learn through the experiences And while he believes the urge to would be by going to school and being different entrepreneurs had,” says Stacey develop a business is “genetic,” activities involved in this type of thing,” Stine says. Noe, Agricultural Entrepreneurship like the roundtable are helpful. Getting to network with business people Initiative coordinator. “Good coaching will not turn you from of Stine’s caliber attracts many students, Harry Stine, president and founder of a nonathlete into an athlete, but it will Noe says. She limits participants at each Stine Seed Co., was the keynote speaker at enhance you and make you better. The event to about 40 to allow students greater the spring event in 2010. He was impressed same principle applies here. They can be access to the visiting professionals. SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 23 ENTREPRENEuRIal S PIRIT SCIENCE sELLs HARRISVACCINES, ISu RESEARCH PARK TEAM uP TO BRINg SCIENTIFIC SOluTIONS TO THE PuBlIC By Barbara mcBreen W hen you walk into Harrisvac- and making progress in cines Inc. you can feel the energy. finding solutions to PRRS The glass doors surrounding and other diseases.” the reception area reveal offices with Since its start, the com- employees intently studying computer pany has grown from one lab screens and deep in discussion. with two scientists to four Photo: Bob Elbert Like any startup, this scene has taken labs with 20 employees. time and energy to establish. In February, the company The business got its start in 2005 when received the Tibbetts Award Hank Harris, professor of animal science from the U. S. Small Business Hank Harris (left) discovered a vaccine to prevent a reproductive disease in pigs. His son Joel (right) and veterinary diagnostic and production Administration for advancing technological is chief marketing officer for Harrisvaccines. animal medicine at Iowa State University, innovation and economic growth. and Matt Erdman, a doctoral student, dis- Harrisvaccines Inc. is just one of 60 ten- covered a vaccine to prevent Porcine Repro- ants currently housed at the ISU Research “Every situation is different,” Upah says. ductive Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS). Park south of the Iowa State University “It’s not the easiest thing in the world to The PRRS virus causes infertility and campus. Steve Carter, director of the ISU take that basic bench research and create reproductive problems in pigs and can be Research Park and the ISU Pappajohn Cen- a successful business. We are not attorneys, economically devastating to producers. ter for Entrepreneurship, says the nonprofit but we can help them understand, in busi- The two scientists decided to start the organization provides an environment that ness terms, what needs to be addressed.” business in order to market, develop and encourages scientists who want to make Businesses in the research park range distribute the vaccine. The company their research available to the public. from startups to large international com- started out as Sirrah and changed its “Our primary purpose is economic panies that include biotechnology, cyber- name to Harrisvaccines Inc. in 2008. development. We want to keep these ideas innovation, agriculture, health, wellness and “In 2009, Harrisvaccines was the in Iowa and we are set up to encourage and more. Harris is an example of a successful first company to market a vaccine for support these new companies,” Carter says. scientist who is continually innovating and the novel H1N1 virus for swine,” Harris For the past 10 years Mike Upah has pursuing new ideas, Carter says. says. “Today the company is thriving led the ISU Pappajohn Center for Entrepre- “He has the energy and drive to take neurship’s business development program. these ideas and put them into the world He says the program has helped more because he believes it will benefit society,” than 150 businesses like Harris’ during Carter says. “He could have published that time. Helping entrepreneurs under- an article about the research and been stand Iowa State policies, licensing and done with it, but it was his desire to product marketability are just a few of help others.” the services the center offers. Professor Hank Harris is the president and founder of Harrisvaccines Inc., which received the Tibbetts award from the Small Business Administration for its technological innovation and entrepreneurship. Photo: Bob Elbert 24 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 ENACTING THE By sherry hoyer ENTREPRENEURIAL nAturE oF Ag HE DIDN’T KNOW IT AT THE TIME, That 4-H project from 1966? BuT A 1966 SWINE SEEDSTOCK 4-H It lives on as Kerns Farms Corp./ PROJECT WAS THE FIRST STEP IN KK Landrace. Also under Kerns’ STEVE KERNS’ INNOVATIVE CAREER ownership: KFC Agri-Services THAT NOW SPANS COMMuNITIES, (the company he started while COMPANIES AND CONTINENTS. an undergraduate); MULTIGENE “I came to Iowa State in 1970 as a fresh- USA, LLC, a joint venture with man in animal science pre-vet. By the end Multigene Plus from France; of my freshman year, I knew I wanted to International Boar Semen; and, work only with swine,” Kerns says. “Under new in fall 2010, Heirloom Swine the direction of Lauren Christian (’58 animal Farms, a niche market joint ven- science), Lanoy Hazel (’41 PHD genetics), ture producing Berkshire pork Al Christian and others, I started doing for high end chefs and restaurants ultrasonic animal evaluation on swine throughout the country. breeding stock for independent breeders “I learned early on in my career and swine test stations.” to always be looking forward. I’ve For several years the Clearfield, Iowa, tried to be at the forefront of native spent his winter and summer quar- adopting and adapting new tech- ters doing ultrasound scanning in states nology or the next generation of Photo: Jeff Deyoung, Iowa Farmer Today east of the Mississippi River and pursued ideas,” Kerns says. “Attending his studies during the fall and spring. meetings, serving on a variety of Kerns (’81 animal science) gained advisory boards for industry and unmatched experience during this time education and networking with that led to the creation of his first company people in and out of the swine offering ultrasound evaluation in 1977. industry is valuable.” Mentor Lauren Christian encouraged him to The Kerns home operation is finish his degree before Iowa State switched as multifaceted as his profession. Steve Kerns sorts hogs in one of his barns near to the semester system. His wife, Becky, and sons Karl, a soph- Clearfield. Kerns started his first business as an “I returned to our home farm to start omore in animal science at Iowa State, and undergrad at ISU in 1977, which is still in operation. expanding in Landrace genetics, and we Matt, a junior in high school, all are part of began offering centralized production the operation. The family has six farms pro- sales in Nevada, Iowa,” Kerns says. “A few ducing five breeds of boars and gilts; 115 serves on committees on the National Pork years later I started traveling with P.S. row crop and hay acres; 200 acres of pasture Board and National Pork Producers Council. Dhillion of American Technologies to for 55 registered Angus cattle; and 200 boars In 2000 he and Becky were honored with work with his clients in Greece, Thailand, in stud producing semen for fresh and fro- the Master Seedstock Producer Award. Malaysia, Philippines, Hong Kong, Taiwan zen domestic and international sales. In honor of his distinguished career, and China. I gained a wealth of interna- He has held numerous leadership Kerns was inducted into the Iowa State tional contacts and clients.” positions in the Iowa Pork Producers University Animal Science Hall of Fame Kerns’ career continues to thrive. Association, including president. He also in 2010. SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 25 Alumni Andrea Falk Sellers is an attorney at Stinson Morrison Hecker LLP in Kansas City. Her background in science gives her the knowledge to work on patents, technology licensing agreements, trademarks and copyrights. Contributed Photo SCIENCE SETS STAGE For PAtEnt AttornEy By Barbara mcBreen Andrea Falk Sellers feels at ease advising biochemistry at Iowa State, but changed increased from seven universities to 100 her clients as both a scientist and entrepre- paths as a junior. She credits Don Beitz, and from 700 innovations to 10,000. neur. With a career path that took her from Iowa State University Distinguished At Stinson Morrison Hecker she is decoding DNA to drawing up patents, she Professor in animal science, for giving known for her expertise in intellectual is as much of an entrepreneur as the clients her the guidance to pursue a career outside property development and protection. she counsels. the laboratory. Tony Strait, Associate General Counsel “Entrepreneurs take advantage of new “I decided I didn’t want to be a scientist, at Ceva U.S. Holdings Inc., says her under- opportunities. They aren’t afraid to change but I wanted to stay connected to science. standing of science allows her to compre- paths and try something new,” says Andrea Dr. Beitz arranged a meeting with the hend the unique characteristics and market Falk Sellers (’94 agricultural biochemistry), patent attorneys that represented his lab positioning of its animal health products. partner at Stinson Morrison Hecker LLP at Iowa State—it was the best of both “She gets our business, which makes in Kansas City. worlds,” says Falk Sellers. her very effective and efficient in helping Falk Sellers works on patents, technol- Falk Sellers received her law degree us achieve our objectives,” Strait says. ogy licensing agreements, trademarks and from the University of Iowa in 1997. She The Iowa State Program for Women in copyrights. She’s in the heart of the nation’s recently returned to the law firm after three Science and Engineering introduced Falk animal health corridor and many of her years as associate general counsel for the Sellers to the lab and her career in science. clients are agricultural-based companies Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, She spent the summer before her senior in industries ranging from veterinary the world’s largest foundation devoted year in high school learning about sequenc- products to agrichemicals. to entrepreneurship. ing gels and decoding DNA. “One day I might be talking to an inven- While at Kauffman, Falk Sellers worked In October, Falk Sellers was recognized tor about a new chemical compound and on an internet startup initiative, the iBridge by the College of Agriculture and Life the next day I could be working on a world- Network, designed to make university Sciences for her achievements and received wide patent strategy for a potential break- innovations more transparent and acces- the Superior Achievement Award for Early through drug technology,” she says. sible to potential licensees, including entre- or Mid-Career Alumni. Falk Sellers started out in agricultural preneurs. During her tenure, the network BE soCiAL ClaSS NoTES aND MoRE: get Ag And lIfe sCIenCes AlumnI onlIne get updates about recent news and events from the College of Agriculture Want to hear what your classmates are up to and get recent news from the and life Sciences via social media. College of Agriculture and Life Sciences? Sign up for the monthly alumni Follow us on twitter at “iastate_cals.” e-newsletter Ag and Life Sciences Alumni Online for class notes, research like the college page on Facebook. Join the alumni group on Linkedin. For news, faculty, staff and student updates, and notices of college events. links, visit www.ag.iastate.edu/stories. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to join the mailing list. Alumni sun By melea reicks licht RIPENED BIOTECH AgRONOMIST ENJOyS ANOTHER ROuND WITH SECOND CAREER IN WINEgRAPE INDuSTRy A person would count themselves lucky to party vintners. Frey says have enjoyed one successful career on the they have a few very cusp of scientific breakthroughs in agri- large growers with more Contributed Photo culture and improving farmer-profitability. than 1,000 acres, but Nick Frey has had two. most members have Frey (’70 agronomy) had a 25-year 100 acres or less and career in research and new business 40 percent grow on development with Pioneer Hybrid As president of the Sonoma County Winegrape less than 20 acres. Commission, Nick Frey does a little bit of everything, International during the beginning of “The growers here are much like including harvest grapes alongside consumers at biotechnology. He left the industry and growers around the world—good peo- Sonoma County Grape Camp. The organization provides marketing and education programs for set out to enjoy the blue skies and warm ple, down-to-earth. The growers on my grape growers in the region. temperatures of Sonoma County. board are working for the interests of all Along with great food, wine and grape growers and not for their personal “We want people to connect with our weather, he found a new career using his agenda,” Frey says. growers. We host sommeliers, offer tast- science and communication skills to work Grower education is an important part ings and tours in our vineyards. We go with the Sonoma County Winegrape of the commission. It offers integrated pest on the road jointly with vintners to major Commission. management meetings; organic producer U.S. cities to host tasting events,” Frey As president, Frey directs $1.2 million groups; pruning contests for vineyard says. “We also offer a fantasy grape camp annually from grower assessments to employees and youth; tradeshows; and that pampers guests with great food and promote Sonoma County as one of the several programs on marketing, profit- wine for two and a half days while experi- world’s premier grape growing regions. ability and issues affecting grape demand. encing the harvest and crush first hand.” The commission also funds research They also offer an employee development Frey says building relationships on vineyard pests and diseases and con- program for Spanish speakers. among growers, customers and “gate- ducts grower education. Frey says they partner with vintners keepers” like sommeliers, retailers and Frey admits the diverse, small-scale and the county tourism bureau to get the the media is essential to building their agriculture of the wine grape industry most bang for their marketing buck. regional brand. seemed pretty foreign to him when he Working together the county pulls in made the move from Iowa. $1.3 billion each year from tourism. “I had no experience in grapes when They target consumers and wineries oNlINE ExTRaS: www.ag.iastate.edu/stories I accepted this job, but my training in through conventional marketing, but Get a taste of Sonoma County agronomy and plant physiology translates much of their efforts are online. Their sonoma County is especially known for its pinot pretty well. And, my experience commu- website is rich with interactive features noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet sauvignon and nicating in the controversial early days like maps, wine guides, grower profiles Zinfandel. you can find out more about their wines and the people who grow them online. of biotech has come in handy,” Frey says. and a grape marketplace. The commis- The commission consists of 1,800 sion also has a presence on Facebook, independent growers who sell to third Twitter and YouTube. SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 27 Alumni Jay Hansen and family have built a dairy enterprise around their Holstein herd in northeast Iowa including an on-farm creamery, a retail store and ice cream shop and a dairy outlet. ‘tiL thE CoWs COME HOME By melea reicks licht HANSEN’S DAIRy SuPPORTS SEVENTH gENERATION The curious faces of children peer out Hansen’s herd of 175 Holsteins gives idea by Iowa State’s Ron Orth with the farmhouse windows, greeting recent more than 1,200 gallons of milk per day. Iowa Institute of Cooperatives. After visitors to the Hansen Family dairy farm They raise their own replacement heifers studying as many ‘what if’ scenarios in northeast Iowa. and have an additional 25 dry cows. They as possible, we started processing and Those little faces are the seventh gen- don’t use growth hormones to produce things have just worked out,” Hansen says. eration of the family to be raised on the milk and their milk is non-homogenized. Jay can sound like a marketing analyst. land since the 1860s. He talks in terms like market radius (25 Although the dairy operation near Coming home to farm miles surrounding the farm) and managing Hudson, Iowa, may be reminiscent of a About 10 years ago, the Hansens expanded supply and demand. He says they initially different era, Jay Hansen (’71 agricultural the herd to allow two of their sons to join focused on smaller grocery stores, daycares education), his wife Jeanne and their family the operation. When their other two sons and nursing homes. In time, larger grocery are keyed in to current consumer trends. expressed interest in joining the operation, stores contacted Hansen to stock their Their workday begins before 4 a.m. Jay knew they would need to expand again products due to customer requests. with the first milking. The cows will be to support five families. “Our product sells itself. It has flavor milked again at 4 p.m. Every 12 hours, In response, they added on-farm pro- to die for. Once they taste it, people keep every day, the milking continues. cessing. Their first milk was bottled in coming back,” Hansen says. “We’re a little old fashioned,” Jay says. 2004, and within two years, the Hansens Hansen is quick to point out he’s “no Our animals spend as much time outside were selling all the milk they could produce. entrepreneur.” What he admits to, is being as possible.” “We were introduced to the processing innovative. “We’re just doing what farmers 28 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 Alumni Photos: Bob Elbert A day at the Hansen Dairy farm is anything but typical. During one recent visit Brad Hansen and his kids have done for years—finding innovative Oldest son Brent is in charge of sales bagged fresh cheese curds (left), while Jay and Jean ways to make money.” and delivery, making 125 weekly stops. took a moment to chat with visitors. The couple, who recently celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary, Today their dairy enterprises consist Youngest son Brad, an ISU elementary work alongside their four sons. Blair (right) trimmed of J&J Dairy, their Holstein herd; Hansen’s education grad, works in processing hooves with his brother Blake while Brent was out delivering product. Farm Fresh Dairy, farm-processed creamery and prepping product. The Hansen’s products; Moo Roo, a Waterloo retail store fifth child, daughter Lynn, is a fellow wants to sell more locally grown food to serving up their hard-dip ice cream and Iowa Stater with a degree in elementary restaurants and food suppliers. Jay says selling their milk, cheese curds, butter, education. She lives in Omaha with her it has significantly broadened their prod- cream and other local products; and husband and children. ucts’ reach. Hansen’s Farm Fresh Dairy Outlet in Jeanne is in charge of public relations, Jay and Jeanne continue to innovate. Cedar Falls. In total they have nearly which includes a thriving agritourism They are building a unique domed home 20 employees in addition to 7 family business that attracts nearly 3,000 school and visitor’s center in preparation for members involved in various roles. children, 4-Hers, seniors and other visi- future generations of Hansens. tors annually. A typical day at the hansen farm? The Hansens believe they are market- One recent spring day included milking, ing more than milk. It’s a relationship making cheese curds, draining butter, with their customers. The trust is oNlINE ExTRaS: www.ag.iastate.edu/stories loading and making deliveries, grooming apparent with on-farm pick up of see scenes from a day in the life of hansen’s dairy. hooves and catching a loose bull. And products available on that was just before noon. the honor system. Each It’s hard to imagine how they keep day as many as 30 cus- everything straight. But both Jay and tomers help themselves WhAt’s With thE WALLABiEs? Jeanne have a supporting team of family to what they need from the hansens’ unique logo of a wallaby with members who help keep everything a cooler adjacent to the a holstein in its pouch “mooroo” was inspired running smoothly. processing area, sign- by son blake’s vacation in Australia. he was Blair (’00 dairy science), the third ing in and leaving pay- so taken with the animals he suggested the oldest of the Hansen children, handles ment in a drop box. family buy a few and make them their logo, so they had a few shipped in. “they sell a lot herd feeding, nutrition and the family’s The family recently of milk,” Jay says with a smile. the walla- crop program growing alfalfa and corn. took on a new market- bies also play a large role in the farm’s agri- Son Blake is in charge of herd manage- ing partnership with tourism, helping to draw in more than 3,000 ment and milking, and Blake‘s wife, Hawkeye Foodservice visitors annually. Jordan, manages the farm’s website. Distributers, which SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 29 Alumni tWo ACrEs, TWO WOMEN, onE FArm By melea reicks licht M aggie Howe’s products are a certified organic, fair trade and locally bit different from those of most produced ingredients whenever possible. Iowa farmers. Their key to success has been finding Handmade, natural bath and body care a loyal customer base online and creating products and luxury pampering items products they need and want. Prairieland like “magic mud” are among the offerings Herbs offers difficult-to-find products like Maggie Howe has found her own place in agriculture by partnering with her created from the bounty of her herb farm natural hair, baby and pet care that “come mother to create natural bath and body Praireland Herbs, near Woodward. up high in Google search rankings” accord- care products from the herbs grown on their two-acre farm. Howe and her mother and business ing to Howe. They do offer their products partner Donna Julseth are at home with at local farmers markets, but 75-80 percent other niche farmers of their business is done online with orders in her area, as well placed from around the world. as conventional “Since we’re literally in the middle of farmers. As she a cornfield we always knew we couldn’t says, they all strive rely on people walking in the door,” Howe for the same goal. says. “We know our customers through “We are taking our blog, Facebook and e-mails. We take our land and skills Midwest friendliness and put it online.” and using that to Howe says working with her mom is create a sustainable “fantastic.” Howe focuses on product devel- livelihood. Everyone opment, marketing, promotion and the wants to do that farm’s online presence. With a background whether they grow in conservation education, Julseth is espe- sheep or corn or veg- cially suited for growing the herbs and deal- Photo: John gibney etables,” Howe says. ing with customers. Julseth also teaches “We can learn a lot classes and brings in other educators to from each other.” offer how-to sessions on making lip balm, Howe (’98 public natural dying, growing herbs, drying herbs service and admin- and cooking with herbs, among others. istration in agricul- From a young age, Howe always knew ture, environmental studies), and Julseth she’d be her own boss. And she has used have been growing herbs for their bath her education and inherent can-do spirit and body products for nearly 13 years to find her own place in agriculture. on the two acres Howe grew up on. “There’s many different reasons Their products contain no synthetic women come to niche agriculture colors or preservatives, and Howe says today, but to succeed they have to they are made with ingredients found believe in themselves and partner in a typical kitchen. Olive oil, cooking and trust others in their agriculture oil, flour, honey, oatmeal and beeswax network,” Howe says. round out their list of ingredients. They Value-added and niche enterprises seem are not certified organic, “too much to hold special opportunities for women paperwork,” Howe says, but they buy entrepreneurs. Howe has seen it first hand. 30 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 Alumin news Brief ioWA stAtE YOUNG ALUM MAkES A stAtEmEnt As EntrEPrEnEur ALumni givEn FAmiLy EArns Mike Taylor (’03 agricultural toP honors Photo: ISu Alumni Association ADVANCED DEGREES studies) was among young By isu ALumni AssoCiAtion FROM FFA Iowa state Alumni named And isu FoundAtion the entire Ronald Zelle family of waverly “stAtement makers” by the two college alumni were honored at the was awarded American ffA degrees at Isu Alumni Association for 2011 Isu Alumni Association and the Isu the organization’s national convention their early personal and pro- foundation distinguished Awards Ceremony in october. Ronald (’83 agricultural and fessional accomplishments. in April. Rodney Ganey (’78 sociology, ms ‘81) life sciences education, ms ‘87) is the taylor says entrepreneurship is a way of of henderson, nev., was presented the distin- agricultural education instructor and the life in his household. After minoring in entre- guished Alumni Award by the Isu Alumni ffA adviser for nashua plainfield schools. preneurship at Iowa state, he built taylor Association. Roger underwood (’80 agricul- he was awarded the honorary American Companies from the ground up. today he tural business) of Ames, received the knoll ffA degree and his wife, lindsay, are partners in several Cardinal and gold Award from the Isu foun- teacher award businesses—including row crop and beef dation. read more about the awardees at in recognition of production agriculture, wholesale distri- www.ag.iastate.edu/stories. his educational bution, commercial real estate, property achievements. management, retail pharmacies and his wife, Mary e-commerce retail businesses. And, Beth (’86 agri- he says, his 4-year-old daughter runs cultural and life sciences Contributed Photo education), a mean lemonade stand. 1948 grAd INDUCTED TO ISU ATHLETICS received the honorary American ffA degree in the other community members hALL oF FAmE division. their daughter, debra, a junior Ray Wehde, in the white jersey (’48 dairy majoring in horticulture, and son, benjamin, industry), was one of 10 alumni who were a sophomore majoring in agricultural inducted into the Isu Athletics hall of fame in business and computer science, were october. he is pictured enjoying a quick pick awarded American ffA degrees for their Contributed Photo up game with his twin brother roy (’48 dairy participation in ffA. meet other “stAtement makers” industry), in the red jersey, who also played at www.ag.iastate.edu/stories. for the Cyclones. ray is considered Iowa state’s first nbA draftee. he was inducted into the hall of fame for basketball and track and field. his name appears among the 129 hall of famers on the All-America walls, ListEn uP: ALUMNI LECTURES a new display around Jack trice stadium. “enrolling as freshmen and going onto that OFFERED AS PODCASTS beautiful campus with its buildings and every- thing, now that was awe-inspiring for a couple James Borel (’78 agricultural business), at Iowa state in march. stewart was the first executive vice president of dupont, pre- graduate of science bound, Iowa state’s of country boys,’’ says wehde in an interview sented the 2011 Carl and marjory hertz program to increase the number of ethnically with the sioux City Journal. “I remember the lecture on emerging Issues in Agriculture diverse Iowa youth pursuing science, tech- freshman team was open to anyone and in April at Iowa state. borel presented “how nology, engineering and math careers. sometimes there were 90 kids there trying Agricultural Innovation and Collaboration to catch the coach’s eye.’’ read more from will shape the future of the world” drawing Neil E. harl (’55 agricultural education, ms wehde at www.ag.iastate.edu/stories. on his experience leading dupont’s produc- ’65 economics), shared leadership lessons tion agriculture businesses, dupont Crop learned throughout his career as he gave the protection and pioneer hi-bred. he shared 2010 william k. deal endowed leadership ideas on how advances in agricultural sci- lecture in october. harl is a Charles f. Curtiss ence will play a major role in shaping the distinguished professor in Agriculture and future of global society and addressing life sciences and emeritus professor of eco- world hunger. nomics specializing in farm finance, taxation, estate planning, business planning and agri- Charles Stewart, Jr. (’00 agricultural bio- cultural law. harl’s presentation was titled, Photo: ISu Athletics chemistry), research associate at the salk “building an enduring leadership platform.” Institute for biological studies in san diego, offered the lecture “fighting hunger: A dnA to download podcasts of the lectures visit engineer’s path to science and success” www.ag.iastate.edu/stories for a link. SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 31 pA r t n e r s For PLAntPEddLErs ENTREPRENEURSHIP RUNS IN THE FAMILY By christa hartsook F or Mike and Rachel Gooder “value to produce Hiemalis Begonias for the North ful corn and soybean production, is a net added” has been second nature for American market. Through that initial importer of food products. That’s not right.” more than 30 years. partnership, another division was added. To the Gooders, it was clear Iowa The owners of Plantpeddler in Cresco, Plantpeddler Young Plants imports cuttings needed more local food production. They Iowa, purchased the greenhouse just a from around the world for value-added pro- researched varieties and learned a lot month after Mike (’80 horticulture) grad- cessing by rooting and starting them prior about greenhouse production. uated from Iowa State University and a to shipping to other greenhouses and mar- “The idea is not only to produce local few days after they exchanged wedding kets throughout the United States. The food for the area, but to balance the sea- vows. It didn’t take them long to start young-plant production and distribution sonality of the product lines and divisions adding value and addressing new markets happens year-round at the facilities, serving we have here,” says Rachel. “We have in wholesale. They added a new division more than 2,500 customers worldwide. established relationships with our outlets. to their local greenhouse, Plantpeddler The addition of the different divisions We can both benefit through our providing Wholesale, providing weekly truck service allowed the staff to grow to 12 full-time, them a food product in addition to the to a regional market. 22 part-time and 12 seasonal employees, ornamental lines.” “We realized pretty early on that we’d making it a significant employer in Plantpeddler replaced 30,000 poinsettia have to keep diversifying our business and Howard County. plants with a trial of three acres of vegetables looking for new opportunities to add value Within recent years, the Gooders found to determine the best varieties for green- to what we were producing,” says Rachel. renewed energy and enthusiasm in the pro- house production. The operation began By 2000, Plantpeddler had gone global. duction of local foods in their greenhouse. marketing under the name Stone Creek Rachel (’79 horticulture) and Mike part- “A few years ago, we had a startling reve- Farms. “We decided to focus on lettuce, nered with Dummen, a German company, lation,” says Mike. “Iowa, for all its wonder- tomatoes and cucumbers,” says Rachel. 32 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 pA r t n e r s WHAT MAKES OUR GRADS SO SPECIAL AS NEW HIRES? The Gooder family has been peddling plants in Creso, Iowa, since just days after Rachel and Mike exchanged wedding there’s a reason our placement rate for vows more than 30 years ago. Daughter Abby and son John are finding their own ways to carry on the family business. new graduates is over 98 percent. the College of Agriculture and life sciences’s undergraduate experience is rich in academic rigor, practical knowledge, global awareness and internships. The produce fills the greenhouse during she led a team in the Ag Innovation and slower months, keeping staff employed and Value Creation Competition sponsored together, it makes our students especially facilities utilized, adding overall value to by the college’s Agricultural Entrepre- qualified for today’s demanding the operation. neurship Initiative. Abby’s product uses “Mike and Rachel Gooder are marketers,” corncobs for horticultural purposes. agriculture and life sciences industry. says Ray Hansen, director of ISU Extension’s Her team placed first in the competition. find out how our grads are the right fit Value Added Agriculture Program. “They “I was pleased to win the contest,” says for your company or organization. know that just the desire to produce local Gooder, “but the really exciting part was food is not enough. There has to be a the encouragement from the panelists market for it and one at which they can afterward. They told me that if our calcu- Contact: Photos: Christa Hartsook make a profit.” lations and market estimates were accurate, Mike Gaul, career services director Hansen has worked with the Gooder then I should be really excited about pur- email@example.com | (515) 294-4725 family through the Iowa Fruit and suing the opportunity.” Vegetable Working Group, which Mike A summer internship at Creative Com- is active in. posites in Ankeny solidified Abby’s desire Mike also assists with several horticul- to turn her concept into a reality. The bio- ture committees at Iowa State, providing composite industry is assisting Abby in insight on the industry. He has had an research and development of the product, advisory role in the recent construction and the Agricultural Entrepreneurship of the greenhouses on campus. The Initiative is helping Abby develop a formal Gooders also offer internships for Iowa business plan. State students at Plantpeddler. In addition, Mike and Rachel are active Given the value already added to their operation, it’s no wonder the Gooders hope a lITTlE hElP in the Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative, working to bring local foods for a bright future in local foods. “We like the idea of supporting the local foods from our friends to communities. movement and getting young people involved in gardening and their health,” WITh ThE hElP oF FRIENDS lIKE you, next generation of gooders carry on startup spirit says Rachel. “Naturally, we’d like to help we can expand the college’s legacy Gooder’s son John is a sophomore at Iowa our own children to grow and transition of launching promising careers in into the business, as well.” State majoring in horticulture. He helped agriculture and life sciences. If you make the recent transition from poinset- know a prospective student who tias to produce. “It was a lot of trial and would benefit from our college’s error,” John says. “We learned a lot the first three years.” John plans to work for personal attention and mentoring by PlantPeddler this summer and eventually advisers, faculty and career services, join the family business. top-notch facilities and international Daughter Abby, a senior in agricultural experiences, please let us know. business at Iowa State, has embraced value-added agriculture, too. Last year refer a potential student to us at www.agstudent.iastate.edu/friends. pA r t n e r s Matt Darr, agricultural and biosystems engineer, (right) talks with Kyle Althoff (left) and Feng Han from DuPont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol about their collaborative research studying how the quality of biomass is influenced by harvesting and storage systems. ArE hooPs good homEs For BiomAss? Photo: Bob Elbert By ed Adcock COllABORATIVE RESEARCH AT BIOCENTuRy RESEARCH FARM lOOKS FOR ANSWERS Iowa State scientists have teamed with vested and by biological processes that in 2008 to use the resources of interdisci- a company planning to build a biomass take place during storage. plinary research and education programs ethanol plant to research how to keep “You can’t produce ethanol from soil,” to address critical business, infrastructure, the material in the best condition before Darr says. “Any soil collected during corn supply chain and policy issues facing the it is processed. stover harvest adds to the overall cost of growing biobased economy. “The research we’re conducting is the delivered product and it increases the “The objective of DDCE’s work with focused on understanding how the qual- byproduct handling requirements of the Iowa State is to analyze the economic fac- ity of biomass is influenced by harvesting biorefinery. Plus, in some conversion tors impacting the supply of corn stover and storage systems. Enhancing the qual- processes the added soil will actually to a future commercial cellulosic ethanol ity of feedstock improves the conversion decrease the conversion efficiency which plant,” Althoff says. economics and final product quality,” says is a significant economic factor.” Three hoop structures, open on the Matt Darr, assistant professor of agricul- Deterioration during storage can also ends, have been built and are being used tural and biosystems engineering. induce negative economic and biomass to store bales of stover in addition to several DuPont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol quality factors. outdoor stacks of stover bales covered with (DDCE) is evaluating the construction “It’s like leaving a loaf of bread on the plastic tarps. The structures are located at of an ethanol plant in Story County or counter for nine months,” Darr says. “If the BioCentury Research Farm, which Webster County. The plant will use bio- the biomass molds or deteriorates not only is devoted to researching the production, mass, such as corn stover, instead of corn are you losing money because you’re losing harvest, storage, transportation and pro- grain to ferment into ethanol. feedstock or material, but the physical cessing of biomass materials. Storing biomass is a common practice, properties and chemical properties change Most of the material was harvested in but research is lacking on how well it is during storage.” central Iowa on privately owned farms preserved during storage. Darr’s research, DDCE discovered Iowa State’s capabili- that were contracted with DDCE. After which is sponsored by DDCE, is evaluat- ties in this area through its participation in the storage research, the biomass material ing just that. the Biobased Industry Center, according to will be shipped to DDCE’s demonstration- Biomass quality is impacted both by Kyle Althoff, the company’s director of feed- scale plant where it will be evaluated for the cleanliness of feedstock when har- stock development. The center was founded its ability to be converted to ethanol. 34 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 inVesting in excellence “Into the Field will give students a broader vision of what we do in the ag world… It’ll give us well rounded agronomists that will take the industry into the next 50 years.” Amy and Harlan Asmus of Asmus Farm Supply have established the Into the Field Fund to provide support for sharpening the diagnostic, critical-thinking and communi- cation skills of agronomy graduates. into THE FiELd By melea reicks licht ASMuS FARM SuPPly PARTNERS WITH AgRONOMy DEPARTMENT TO CulTIVATE FuTuRE AgRONOMISTS Asmus Farm Supply and the Department of “We wanted to make an impact on the on sharpening diagnostic, critical-thinking Agronomy have teamed up to take students future for ag retail and manufacturers,” and communication skills. “Into the Field” to prepare them for the Asmus says. “We can cultivate the excite- “Into the Field will give students a demands of today’s agriculture industry. ment of new students, carry it through broader vision of what we do in the ag The Into the Field program will help four years of college and into the field world and show them what’s available faculty and students develop relation- which is how the program gets its name.” to them,” Asmus says. “It’ll give us well- ships with practicing agronomists and Kendall Lamkey, professor and chair rounded agronomists that will take the provide field experience for agronomy of the agronomy department, says the industry into the next 50 years.” students to enhance their value and via- program will allow students to take their New industry partners are welcome to bility in the workforce. education to the next level. join Into the Field to help grow the fund Asmus Farm Supply of Rake, Iowa, is “At Iowa State University we are really and potentially endow the program, and a family-owned agricultural business spe- good with teaching the technical knowl- to further develop relationships with the cializing in farm chemicals, plant nutrition, edge that exists behind the scenes, but agronomy department. seed and seed treatment. Amy Asmus, vice that is just one part of them being a pro- Contributed Photos president of Asmus Farm Supply, sees the fessional. Into the Field will help further program as a win-win for companies and round out these young people into pro- students. fessionals,” Lamkey says. “It has benefits for everyone in the future The program will provide support for as we release into the field students that are teaching improvement. This will include well-trained and passionate about what we opportunities for faculty to shadow industry love, and that is ag retail,” Asmus says. agronomists; develop case studies for use in Asmus Farm Supply started the fund in classes; pay fees to attend technology work- 2010 as part of its 50th anniversary celebra- shops and short courses; and accommodate tion. They asked those who had planned travel to teaching conferences. to present them with gifts to instead donate As part of Into the Field the agronomy to the fund. With a donation by Asmus, department, in conjunction with industry, Amy and Harlan Asmus recently hosted members of the agronomy faculty, including department along with their partners, enough was will develop a curriculum that will give chair Kendall Lamkey (right), to discuss strategies to raised and pledged to kick off the program. students a broad range of experiences. strengthen field experiences for undergraduates. More will be needed to sustain the program It will also include an experiential field over a long period of time. course for agronomy seniors with a focus SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 35 inVesting in excellence FIRST RECIPIENT OF in hEr oWn Words: mohn sChoLArshiP AMy PEyTON SHARES IMPACT OF SCHOlARSHIPS IN ROUTE TO ROME Amy peyton is featured in an Isu foundation video describing her experiences at Iowa state. peyton says receiving a privately- Amy Peyton is the first recipient of the Jim students by providing an opportunity to funded scholarship has allowed her to and Connie Mohn Scholarship. Peyton is a study abroad, and help students obtain become involved on campus and make a senior in agricultural business, economics a degree,” Jim Mohn says. “We’re looking difference by volunteering in elementary and public service and administration in forward to meeting the recipients and schools through her sorority. watch the agriculture from Sac City. She will use the seeing the impact of our gift.” video at www.ag.iastate.edu/stories. gift to fund her study abroad experience to Rome on the Dean’s Global Agriculture and Food Leadership program where she will Photo: ISu Foundation work on a team project with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. Jim (’75 agricultural education, animal science) and Connie Mohn from Cherokee, created the scholarship to support students in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences as they prepare for and complete a study abroad experience. The couple set up the scholarship with a deferred gift, but chose to activate the account immedi- ately by making annual cash gifts. “We hope these scholarships will help retain CURTISS RENOVATION TO GIVE EntrEPrEnEuriAL AmBAssAdors room to groW sChoLArshiPs: The Student Ag Ambassadors are making do in their current A SURE RETURN office space—a former closet in Curtiss Hall. Thankfully, a new workspace is in store as part of the renovation of Curtiss ON INVESTMENT Photo: Barbara McBreen Hall. It’s one of many ways the renovation will benefit students. The college awards nearly $12,000 Plans include a student commons, meeting rooms for group annually in entrepreneurial scholar- work and interviews and a ground-level wing devoted to student ships funded by private donors. The services. The Ag Ambassadors help recruit in many ways, family of Leonard Hermanson (’25 including campus tours and visits, off-campus events and dairy science) recently set up a schol- Carly Cummings shadow days, during arship program to support the top which they host high three student teams in the Entrepreneurship in Agriculture schoolers for a two-day course. One of the Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative’s stay. Their new digs prestigious scholarships honors emeritus professor Robert will give them room Jolly who was the first director of the initiative (see story page to grow and reach even nine). Ryan Pellett (’91 agricultural business) and his wife more potential students. Susan endowed a scholarship for students with an aptitude Find renovation details and involvement in entrepreneurship. Carly Cummings, and learn how you can a junior in agricultural business minoring in international support the effort at: www. agriculture and entrepreneurial studies, received the most ag.iastate.edu/curtiss. recent Pellet Family Scholarship. Photo: Ed Adcock 36 SToRIES Vol.5 no.1 in our next issue CoNTINuE youR aDVENTuRE wIth IowA stAte unIversIty onlIne In AgrICulture And lIfe sCIenCes The College of Agriculture and life Sciences offers a wide array of online courses and programs to meet your needs. These educational opportunities EVERyoNE EaTS can enhance your job skills or help you prepare for a new career while providing flexible scheduling to suit your work and family life. science and education in online masters degrees: FooD PRoDuCTIoN systems • Master of Agriculture are served up in the next • Master of Science in Agricultural Education SToRIES in Agriculture • Master of Science in Agronomy and life sciences. the issue • Masters program in Community Development will ExPloRE research • Master of Science in Plant Breeding and demonstration across • Master of Science in Seed Technology DIVERSE production systems, & Business Management insights that students gain Continuing Education opportunities: into what it takes to get food • Food Safety & Defense graduate Certificate FRoM FIElD To PlaTE and • Occupational Safety Certificate • Swine Science Certificate how shifting CoNSuMER PREFERENCES impact Learn more: science—and vice versa. www.agde.iastate.edu | firstname.lastname@example.org | (800) 747-4478 304 Curtiss Hall Ames, Iowa 50011 When she was 9, Laura nourished her baby calf. She was nourishing her dreams too. Laura Larson had a knack for agriculture. At Iowa State she learned she could use her skills for business. Through our National Agri-Marketing Association chapter, she made a marketing plan for a colostrum replacer and presented at a national competition. The skills she learned in an internship through the Ag Entrepreneurship Initiative nourished a startup business — and her career. www.agstudent.iastate.edu WE WAnt to hEAr From you! nAme Please e-mail us at email@example.com degree InformAtIon to share feedback and new? Address your current e-mail or e-mAIl Address mail address. Or com- plete and return this PlEaSE SEND ME MoRE INFoRMaTIoN oN: card. By sharing your undergraduate programs graduate programs distance education e-mail address you will please specify be signed up to receive Investing in the College-Campaign Iowa state our monthly e-mail update, Alumni Ag and Life Sciences Online.
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