Nebraska Hall of Ag Achievement names two honorees, inducts new members
Stephen Baenziger, Eugene W. Price Distinguished Professor, small grains breeding and genetics, at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and Dale Flowerday, agronomist and chief executive officer of DAL-MAR Consulting of Lincoln, will be named Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement honorees at its annual banquet May 1.
The banquet honoring Baenziger, Flowerday and seven new members of the Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement will begin with a 5:15 p.m. social hour, followed by a 6 p.m. buffet dinner at the Nebraska East Union on UNL's East Campus. The banquet costs $20 per person and is open to the public. The deadline for reservations is April 24. To make reservations or for more information, contact Linda Arnold at 402-472-3802.
Baenziger joined UNL in 1986 to head the university's nationally-recognized wheat genetic improvement program. In the last five years, he has released six new wheat cultivars, one triticale variety and one barley cultivar. His cultivars account for 70 percent of Nebraska's wheat acres and for a significant proportion of the wheat grown in South Dakota. His germplasm resources have been used to develop numerous wheat cultivars in other Great Plains states, as well.
In addition to being a grains breeder, he also is a geneticist and molecular biologist. He has obtained more than $2 million in external grant funding from federal agencies to support the basic research aspects of his program and has published several highly-acclaimed research papers.
He is an excellent teacher and mentor of graduate students and also has provided extensive service to the scientific community as well as the university. He has served as president of the Crop Science Society of America, editor of Crop Science journal, chair of the Host Genetics Resource Group of the U.S. Wheat Barley Scab Initiative and a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Crop Adaptation Genetics.
He also has received many awards and recognitions, including Fellowship in the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America and American Association for the Advancement of Science.
He was born and attended high school in Des Plaines, Ill., and received his bachelor's degree at Harvard University and his master's and doctorate degrees from Purdue University. He and his wife, Karen, reside in Lincoln.
Flowerday is an agronomist who is known for his teaching, research and Extension/Outreach contributions to agriculture. Flowerday began his career at UNL as an agronomist and the first superintendent of the Northeast Experiment Station at Concord. He returned to the agronomy department in 1964 to serve as leader of agronomy Extension and out-state testing activities. He then became the deputy director of the university's mission to Colombia from 1967-1969. After returning to UNL, he served as vice chairman of the agronomy department from 1969-1971. He was promoted to professor in 1973 with teaching and research responsibilities.
Flowerday has conducted research on irrigation, soybean yield tests, water use efficiency and simulated hail damage at what is now UNL's Agricultural Research and Development Center near Mead. He helped initiate the Crop Management and Diagnostic Clinics in 1996 and has assisted with the Soybean Management Field Days since 1998.
He was rated an excellent teacher by students in his classes and received the UNL Student Foundation Builders Award for Teaching in 1974, 1975 and 1976. He also received the university's Distinguished Teaching Award and Outstanding Teacher Award from the UNL chapter of Gamma Sigma Delta, both in 1976. He was named to the Northeast Nebraska Agriculture Hall of Fame in 1987, the Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement in 2000 and received the Nebraska Cooperative Extension Association Meritorious Service Award in 2001. He is a member of the American Society of Agronomy, Sigma Xi, Gamma Sigma Delta and the Nebraska Association of Crop Consultants.
After retiring from UNL in 1983, he worked for Pioneer Hi-Bred International until 1994 and then DAL-MAR Consulting. Born in Seward and a graduate of Seward High School, Flowerday received his bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees from UNL and served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He and his wife, Marlene, reside in Lincoln.
The Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement, formed in 1916, has just over 200 members statewide dedicated to preserving and improving Nebraska agriculture. Each year, the group recognizes at least one honoree and elects new members.
This year's new members are:
Susan Fritz, of Crete, is the associate vice chancellor for the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources at UNL. She and her husband, Russell, also continue to operate a family farm. Fritz is credited with having significant impact on Nebraska agriculture through her leadership in developing human resources to sustain and grow the state's agriculture. A member of the university's graduate college, she has published and presented papers in the areas of agricultural education and leadership. Among her most recent scholarly efforts, she, with UNL colleagues, edited and published a textbook titled: "Interpersonal Skills for Leadership." She is a member of several organizations and has received several honors, including the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Distinguished Teaching Award and the National Excellence in Distance Education Award, and is a Library of Crop Technology team member. Fritz earned her bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees from UNL.
Tom Hansen, of rural North Platte, is a rancher and state senator for District 42. He and his wife, Linda, continue to be involved in the 131-year-old family ranch, Hansen 77, which is known as one of the most progressive ranches in Nebraska. He is a leader at both the local and state levels in agriculture and the beef industry. He is an active member of the Nebraska Cattlemen Education and Research Foundation, advisory committee for UNL's West Central Research and Extension Center at North Platte, and he and his wife are active participants on the UNL Chancellor's Committee of Visitors. He is a member of the Nebraska Cattlemen, the Nebraska Farm Bureau, National Cattlemen Beef Association and Ag Builders. He received his bachelor's degree from UNL in 1970.
Gary Hergert is professor of agronomy and horticulture at UNL's Panhandle Research and Extension Center at Scottsbluff. His career has centered on enhancing yields and profits by increasing fertilizer use efficiency. Hergert was a soil scientist at the West Central Research and Extension Center at North Platte for several years, working with plant nutrition and management. He served as director for the WCREC for several years, providing leadership and insight in the development of the Gudmundsen Sandhills Laboratory. Another major interest is limited irrigation. He is a member of and has received awards from the American Society of Agronomy and Soil Science Society of America and was elected fellow to both. He also is a member of Gamma Sigma Delta. Hergert received his bachelor's and master's degree from Colorado State University and his doctorate from Cornell University.
Z. B. Mayo joined the UNL Department of Entomology in 1972. He served as interim department head from 1993-1995 and head from 1999 to 2005 when he was named interim dean and director for UNL's Agricultural Research Division and then interim associate dean and director of the ARD until his recent retirement. He continues to provide support for IANR in his part-time role as coordinator for IANR's International Agricultural Program. Mayo's research programs in Nebraska focused on the development of bio-intensive pest management programs for field crops. He is a member and has held office in several organizations and has received numerous awards, including being selected as the National Educational Administrator of the Year by the National Association of Educational Office Professionals in 2008. Mayo received his bachelor's degree from Texas Tech University and his master's and doctorate degrees from Oklahoma State University.
Owen Palm, of Gering, serves as CEO of 21st Century Holdings, LLC, which includes six John Deere dealerships and 11 farm and ranch stores. This Panhandle-based agricultural company provides local goods and services to rural Nebraskans, contributing to the vitality of rural Nebraska. Palm serves as president of the board of directors of Twin Cities Development, an economic development organization in Scotts Bluff County. He is the former vice president of operations for The Western Sugar Company. He is a 1975 graduate of the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology and a trustee of its foundation. He also is a trustee of the Nebraska Chapter of The Nature Conservancy. He and his wife, Karen, are active in the community. Owen was named the Star-Herald's Citizen of the Year in 2006.
Kennard "Ken" Pohlman, of Omaha, is president of Midwest Laboratories. He and his wife, Beverly, established Midwest Laboratories in 1975 to provide analytical work for the agricultural industry. It was expanded to include governmental, microbiology and food and industrial testing. He maintains a close association with his Nebraska roots as the owner/operator of a farm in Stanton County. He is a former member of the board of directors for the Nebraska Agricultural Leadership Council and active in the LEAD Program. He supports 4-H and FFA youth programs, providing scholarships for youth. A veteran member of Ak-Sar-Ben 4-H Livestock Exposition Buyers Club Purple Ribbon Auction Committee for more than 30 years, he has donated the award for the champion heifer at the Nebraska State Fair 4-H Heifer Show since 1977. He also is active in the Omaha Agribusiness Club, the Omaha Chamber of Commerce, the Nebraska AgRelations Council, the Arbor Day Foundation and the Nebraska Historical Society. Pohlman received his bachelor's and master's degrees from UNL.
Byron "Bud" Stolzenburg, of Crookston, is a retired Extension educator/unit leader for UNL Extension in Cherry County. He has always had a vision for the issues and opportunities facing Sandhills farmers and ranchers. He served as Extension educator from 1986-2006. During this time, Extension programming flourished as evidenced by increased 4-H enrollment and expanded participation in Extension education programming. He led the development of the Sandhills Beef Team and started other programming which included: estate planning, land and cattle leasing, computer record keeping, NCR beef ration balance workshops, Nebraska EDGE Ranching for Profitability workshops, Nebraska Ranch Practicum and the UNL Beef Home Study course. He is active in the Nebraska Cattlemen, the Sandhills Beef Association and the NRD Advisory Board. He and his wife, Jean, are also active in the community and church.