Iowa Farm Bureau presents Bob Joslin Award
Balancing a flourishing farm and family is a challenge, but Keith Kroneman of Osage makes it look easy. The farmer raises a herd of cattle, a flock of ewes, feeds niche-market hogs, grows corn and soybeans and offers custom grain hauling services to local farmers. And he can't forget to mention helping his wife raise three young children, in addition to be an active member of the Mitchell County Farm Bureau.
Kroneman was recognized for his leadership efforts with the 2012 Bob Joslin Award at the 94th Iowa Farm Bureau Federation annual meeting Dec. 5 in Des Moines. The award honors young farmers who demonstrate outstanding leadership in Farm Bureau, agriculture and their communities. The award is named for Bob Joslin, IFBF president from 1986 to 1987, who was known for his support and encouragement of young farmers.
Kroneman first joined the Mitchell County Farm Bureau about 10 years ago, soon after he married his wife, Bonnie, and started his own farm near Osage. The Kronemans have three children: William, 7; Colton, 4; and Haddie, 2.
Kroneman first served as the county Farm Bureau's young farmer chair, participating in several young farmer activities including the ag discussion meet. He also helps with Ag in the Classroom events, including a farm safety day camp.
Kroneman kept active in the Mitchell County Farm Bureau, serving as vice president and president. "He's set a good example for others to follow, that people can be young and active and successful, too," said Randy Heitz, Iowa Farm Bureau's manager for Region 5, which includes Mitchell County.
In 2007, Kroneman participated in Iowa Farm Bureau's Ag Leaders Institute, a program that provides leadership training to young farmers. Through the Ag Leaders Institute, Kroneman learned the importance of becoming a spokesperson for ag.
"A lot of farmers, we're content to do our own thing and stay quiet, but sometimes you have to get up and do things and say something," Kroneman said.
In addition to his Farm Bureau leadership roles, Kroneman also served on the Mitchell County Farm Service Agency Committee from 2006 to 2011. He is a member of the Iowa Corn Growers Association and Iowa Soybean Association. In his community, Kroneman has served as a trustee for St. John's Lutheran Church and on the St. Ansgar Elementary Parent Teacher Association.
As the Joslin Award winner, Kroneman receives a plaque, $750 gift card from Growmark, a John Deere D 170 lawn tractor, 90-day NPNI John Deere Financial certificate and expense paid trips to the American Farm Bureau annual meeting in Nashville, the Growmark annual meeting in Chicago and the IFBF Young Farmer conference in Des Moines.