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For Immediate Release
Friday, April 7, 2017

Dustin Vande Hoef
515/281-3375 or 515/326-1616 (cell)



Award to be presented April 14 at the Newton family farm

DES MOINES – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey today announced that Don and Seth Newton from Benton County have been named the winners of the Gary Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award.  The Newton’s are a father/son partnership that farm together and raise grain, finish cattle and have a cow/calf operation.

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey will present the award to the family on Friday, April 14 at the Newton’s farm, 7577 21st Ave. Blairstown.  The “Big Show,” which airs on both WHO and WMT radio, will broadcast live from the presentation from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

“The livestock industry is extremely important to our state and we are fortunate to have farmers like Don and Seth Newton all across Iowa that are passionate about caring for their animals, protecting the environment and serving their neighbors and community.  I always enjoy the opportunity to recognize and thank families like the Newton’s that are truly good farm neighbors,” Northey said.

The family was nominated for the award by their father and grandfather Wayne Newton.  In his nomination, he highlighted Don and Seth’s commitment to animal welfare and environmental protection.  “This father/son operation has always been very conscientious regarding the care of the land they own or rent.  The fertility of the farms continues to improve with the use of manure and best practices using commercial fertilizer,” Newton stated.

Don and Seth have both been involved in the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association and are active locally, including working at the county fair.

The Wergin Good Farm Neighbor award, made possible through the financial support of the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers, recognizes Iowa livestock farmers who take pride in doing things right. This includes caring for the environment and their livestock and being good neighbors. It is named in memory of Gary Wergin, a long-time WHO Radio farm broadcaster who helped create the award.

Anyone interested in nominating their neighbor for the award should write a letter or e-mail explaining why their neighbor should receive this designation.  Applications may be submitted to the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Attn: Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award, Henry A. Wallace Building, Des Moines, IA 50319 or emailed to



Mailing Address: IDALS,  Wallace State Office Building,   502 E. 9th Street,  Des Moines, IA 50319:     PH: 515-281-5321
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