Top Producer of the Year

You’ve taken the risks and built a successful business.

You give back to your industry and your local community.

Your story would help others push themselves to achieve success.

The Top Producer of the Year Award identifies and honors agricultural producers from whom our readers can learn business concepts, ranging from value-added ventures to succession plans to overcoming adversity. If these characteristics can be used to describe you, then you should apply to be the 2021 Top Producer of the Year.

Top Producer of the Year

Entrants will be judged on:

  • entrepreneurial originality (50%)
  • financial and business progress (30%)
  • industry or community leadership (20%)

Any farmer or rancher who derives at least half of his/her income from farming and farm-related ventures may apply.


The three 2020 Top Producer of the Year finalists received a trip for two to Top Producer Seminar, a trip to Commodity Classic, CEO consulting sessions and other prizes. The winner also received a lease of a Case IH tractor for six months. Prizes may vary from 2020.

The three finalists for the 2020 Top Producer of the Year award will be recognized at the 2020 Top Producer Seminar, which runs Jan. 28-30 in Chicago.

Deadline to enter: Sept. 1, 2020

For details, please email editor Sara Schafer at [email protected]

>> Download the 2021 application

Profiles of Past Winners:

2020 Top Producer of the Year

Winner: Kristjan Hebert, Moosomin, Saskatchewan


Sam Ross, Pioneer, La.

Becky Berger, Hillsboro, Ore.


2019 Top Producer of the Year

Winner: Jimmy Tosh, Henry, Tenn.


Chris Adams, Grand Forks, N.D.

Ron Rabou, Albin, Wyo.

2018 Top Producer of the Year

Winner: Frank HoweyMonroe, N.C.


Bailey Family Farms, Iola, Ill.

Jeremie Pavelski, Heartland FarmsHancock, Wis.

2017 Top Producer of the Year

WinnerChalmers and Lori Anne CarrRidge Spring, S.C.


Richard and Roderick GumzEndeavor, Wis.

John PagelKewaunee, Wis.

2016 Top Producer of the Year

Donald and Cheri De Jong; Hartley, Texas

2015 Top Producer of the Year

Bill, Albert, Bernard and David Peterson and Peterson Farms; Loretto, Ky.


Stan Boshart and SJB Farms; Tangent, Ore.

Roric Paulman and Paulman Farms; Sutherland, Neb.

2014 Top Producer of the Year

Lee Lubbers; Gregory, S.D.


Jay and Cara Myers; Colfax, N.D.

Joe Zumwalt; Warsaw, Ill.


Luke Brubaker; Mount Joy, Pa.

John Carroll; Illinois and Brazil

Dave Nelson; Fort Dodge, Iowa


Gregg Halverson; Grand Forks, N.D.

Tim Richter; Lime Springs, Iowa

Mike Stamp; Decatur, Mich.


Jim Kline; Hartford City, Ind.

Jake Clark; Grand Ledge, Mich.

Justin Crownover; Sunray, Texas


Donny DeLine; Charleston, Mo.

Schmidt Farms; Sudlersville, Md.

Hudye Farms; Burlington, Colo.


Lon Frahm; Colby, Kan.

Andy & Beth Snider; Hart, Mich.

Duncanson Growers; Mapleton, Minn.


Dave Minich, Logansport, Ind.

Star Rock Farms, Conestoga, Penn.

Leroy Shatto,Osborn, Mo.


Kip Tom, Leesburg, Ind.

Joe Nichols, Wallonia, Ky.

Randy Hughes, Janesville, Wis.


Chad Olsen, Hendricks, Minn.

Dean Walker, Orofino, Ida.

Rick Rosentreter, Carlinville, Ill.


Steve Irsik, Ingalls, Kan.

Bill Kubecka, Palacios, Tex.

Craig Yunker, Elba, N.Y.


Brian Mitchell, Elkhart, Kan.

Kevin Green, DeWitt, Iowa

Jay Garetson, Copeland, Kan.


Dean Folkvord, Three Forks, Mont.

Keith Masser, Sacramento, Pa.

Tim Dewey, Cimarron, Kan.


Melvin Winger, Johnson, Kan.

Jerry Hostetter,Ephrata, Pa.

Jay Clasing, Ruthven, Iowa


Ben Riensche, Jesup, Iowa

John Moser, Greeley, Colo.

Gene Veliquette, Williamsburg, Mich.


Marty Klinker, Fairfield, Mont.

Donnie Young, Ulysses, Kan.

Steve and Lola Raska, Great Falls, Mont.