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Monday, June 4, 2018

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


Award to be presented June 5 at the Plowman’s farm near Douds

DES MOINES – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today announced that Rick and Lisa Plowman from Van Buren County have been named the winners of the Gary Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award. The family has a cow-calf operation and a feedlot in addition to raising corn, soybeans and hay on their farm in rural Douds.

Naig will present the award to the family on Tuesday, June 5.  The ceremony will be at the Plowman’s farm, 16063 Gold Ave., Douds.  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.

“Livestock production is vitally important to our state and the families that care for those animals are critical to our rural communities. The Good Farm Neighbor Award is a great opportunity to highlight the many families who do a tremendous job caring for their animals and protecting the environment while also contributing so much to our communities,” Naig said. “It is my pleasure to help recognize and congratulate the Plowman family on receiving this award.”

The family was nominated for the award by their neighbor Jennifer Gardner.  In her nomination she cited their commitment to protecting the land and providing the best care for their animals, saying, “Farming along the Des Moines River, the family has taken great care to ensure their operation is sound when it comes to conservation and exceeding DNR requirements.”

“The cow-calf and feedlot operations use best management practices for manure handling and pasture management, while being diligent to protect the land from run-off and erosion,” Gardner added.

The family is also very active in the community and within the agriculture industry. Rick currently serves as President of the local school board and is active in the Iowa Beef Industry Council and the Van Buren County Farm Bureau.

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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