AGCO Announces Operator Of The Year Final Four

Honored for excelling at a job that demands long hours and deep commitment, four finalists have been named in the AGCO Application Equipment 2013 Operator of the Year program. Now in its eighth year, this program recognizes North America’s top professional applicators for their overall skill and dedication to their profession, as well as their contributions to their retail organizations and service to their local communities.

The four finalists were selected by an AGCO panel of judges and will attend the 2013 Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) Conference & Expo December 3-5 in Miami, FL. There, the 2013 Operator of the Year winner will be announced and presented with a new Harley-Davidson motorcycle. All nominees for Operator of the Year will receive a certificate of recognition.

“The Operator of the Year program is designed to recognize the vital contributions made by these dedicated professionals, on and off the field,” said Mark Sharitz, director of marketing for AGCO Application Equipment. “They not only spend long hours in the field every season, but they also are highly skilled at using the latest advances in precision application technology to help farmers maximize their crop yield.”

This year’s finalists, nominated by their managers, are:

 

Ben Hayes, CPS.
Ben Hayes, CPS

Ben Hayes, Crop Production Services, Lanark, IL
Besides being regarded as an exceptional operator, Hayes also is in charge of daily operations, provides employee training and serves as safety coordinator at his location. “There are certain customers who buy inputs solely on the fact that they know Ben will be doing the custom application on their farms, which says a lot for him as an operator,” said Jon Meade, facility manager of Crop Production Services.

“It was pretty exciting and really leaves me speechless,” said Hayes, who has served the past five years with Crop Production Services, applying 30,000 acres per year. “It definitely means a lot, and I’m looking forward to the opportunity to be a finalist.”

 

Tony Richardson, Southern States Cooperative, Inc.
Tony Randolph, Southern States Cooperative, Inc.

Tony Randolph, Southern States Cooperative, Inc., Farmville, NC
Relationship-building and attention to even the smallest of details are attributes that set Randolph apart as he applies 25,000 acres each growing season. “Tony is wholly committed to his career,” said Terry McMahon, manager of corporate communications for Southern States Cooperative, based in Richmond, VA. “He takes the time to talk to each of his customers, finds out where the challenges are in each field and makes the extra effort to identify and take care of any trouble spots that may be in the field.”

“I was super-excited to hear about it,” said Randolph, who has served the past seven years with Southern States Cooperative’s regional agronomy center in Farmville, NC. “When I come to work, every day is a new challenge. To be recognized for hard work is amazing.  It really humbles me.”

 

Randy Bauwens, Town and Country Supply Association.
Randy Bauwens, TCSA

Randy Bauwens, Town and Country Supply Association, Edgar, MT
A 10-year application veteran, Bauwens covers more than 44,000 acres from the Canadian border into Wyoming each year. “There isn’t terrain Randy hasn’t seen, weather he hasn’t raced and a grower he hasn’t impressed with his exceptional service and abilities,” said David Sieler, Town and Country Supply Association agronomist. “He is truly a driving force for ag success in our area.”

“I was shocked, since I never thought a small area like ours would have an Operator of the Year finalist,” said Bauwens. “I really enjoy spreading fertilizer, so it’s a real honor, no doubt about it.”

 

Tom Leuthardt, New Horizons CHS Service Center.
Tom Leuthardt, New Horizons CHS Service Center

Tom Leuthardt, New Horizons CHS Service Center, Chokio, MN
With 34 years of application experience and over 43,000 acres applied this year, Leuthardt consistently delivers outstanding customer service. “Tom goes the extra mile to get the job done,” said Judson Moore, sales manager of New Horizons CHS Customer Service Center. “He always wants to be the first one in the field in the morning and the last one back to base that night. Tom takes great pride in the equipment he runs.”

“I’m very proud to be selected,” Leuthardt said, “but it wouldn’t have been possible without the excellent team I work with, including the drivers, sales group and managers. They all make me look good and were part of it.”

Community Service

Besides demonstrating their commitment in the field, all four finalists have an impressive record of community service. Hayes recently used his sprayer system expertise to assist the local fire department in obtaining the most efficient plumbing system on its equipment. Randolph is president of a local motorcycle club that has organized a number of rides to benefit various charitable causes. Bauwens has served with the Edgar Volunteer Fire Department for more than 20 years and also has supported its annual fundraiser by spreading Town and Country Supply’s 200 acres of donated application each year. Leuthardt served as a volunteer firefighter in his community for 20 years and helps the city and town residents with snow removal when needed.

For more information, visit www.applylikeapro.com.

Leave a Reply

Equipment Stories

TMX-2050-In-Cab-Display-Launch-Run-Screen
EquipmentGPS Auto Steer: Innovating in a Mature Market
July 17, 2017
In the world of Big IRON, GPS auto steer has closely mirrored the evolutionary path of consumer GPS Navigation systems Read More
Crop InputsMonsanto: Illegal, Improper Use at Root of Drift Problems
July 14, 2017
Monsanto isn’t backing down from the position that its tool — the Roundup Ready Xtend dicamba-tolerant system for soybeans and Read More
stoltzfus-ground-drive-spreader-1
EquipmentStoltzfus Spreaders Expands REDHAWK Line with 10-Ton Model
July 11, 2017
Stoltzfus Spreaders, which introduced the wet lime spreader in 1976, has added a 10-ton version (CU-100) to its REDHAWK ground Read More
Agronomist and farmer on iPad inspecting weeds
Precision AgPatience Needed: Lessons for Getting New Tech onto the Farm
July 6, 2017
A popular joke within the tech industry was trotted out at GAI AgTech Week in Boston, MA, speaking volumes about Read More
Trending Articles
Stewardship‘Gonna Fly Now’ with Environmental Respect
July 20, 2017
One of the most memorable moments in movie history occurred in the Academy Award-winning 1976 film “Rocky.” Haven gotten his Read More
StewardshipEnvironmental Respect 2017 Kicks Off Enjoying an American Pastime
July 18, 2017
Following months of planning and scheduling, the 2017 Environmental Respect Awards (ERA) celebration kicked off in fine fashion as more Read More
Soybean Closeup
Crop InputsMissouri Lifts Dicamba Ban, Issues Stricter Application Parameters
July 14, 2017
The Missouri Department of Agriculture has lifted its barely week-old ban on new dicamba technologies, which have been at the Read More
Crop InputsMonsanto Responds to Arkansas, Missouri Dicamba Bans
July 10, 2017
Monsanto, provider of the dicamba-tolerant Roundup Ready Xtend crop system for soybeans and cotton, issued the following statement on Friday, Read More
Retail FacilitiesPCS-Hammond Meets Fertilizer Storage Needs with New Dome Facility
July 8, 2017
The new barrel dome facility at the PCS-Hammond Regional Distribution Center in Hammond, IN, can hold more than 100,000 tons Read More
PrecisionAg Vision Conference
Precision AgPrecisionAg® Vision Conference: Focused on the Future
June 13, 2017
PrecisionAg® is pleased to announce the return of its PrecisionAg Vision Conference, October 10-12, 2017. Based on overwhelmingly positive response Read More
Latest News
ManagementCropLife Retail Week: Dicamba Update and InfoAg Preview
July 21, 2017
Editors Eric Sfiligoj and Paul Schrimpf discuss reports from the field and comments from Monsanto about dicamba drift this season, Read More
Stewardship‘Gonna Fly Now’ with Environmental Respect
July 20, 2017
One of the most memorable moments in movie history occurred in the Academy Award-winning 1976 film “Rocky.” Haven gotten his Read More
StewardshipEnvironmental Respect: Grand Grounds, Posters Parade
July 19, 2017
To celebrate their accomplishments in the area of environmental stewardship, award recipients at the 2017 Environmental Respect week spent much Read More
StewardshipHarden’s Message to ERA Winners: Do Tell Your Good Stor…
July 19, 2017
As the daughter of a peanut farmer, Krysta Harden, Chief Sustainability Officer for DuPont Crop Protection, understands the importance the Read More
StewardshipFarming Smarter Hinges on 4R Best Management Practices
July 18, 2017
Preserving water quality while feeding another 2 billion people by 2050 is the challenge facing North America’s farmers and its Read More
StewardshipEnvironmental Respect 2017 Kicks Off Enjoying an Americ…
July 18, 2017
Following months of planning and scheduling, the 2017 Environmental Respect Awards (ERA) celebration kicked off in fine fashion as more Read More
Soybean Field Sunset
OpinionPicking Partners in the Crop Protection Market
July 17, 2017
Agriculture is a market awash in highs, lows, and everything in between. This is certainly true in the world of Read More
TMX-2050-In-Cab-Display-Launch-Run-Screen
EquipmentGPS Auto Steer: Innovating in a Mature Market
July 17, 2017
In the world of Big IRON, GPS auto steer has closely mirrored the evolutionary path of consumer GPS Navigation systems Read More
MFA-Centralia-MO
Eric SfiligojThe Resilience of Ag Retailers
July 17, 2017
After covering the ag retail market for 17 years, I think one of the most impressive character traits I’ve seen Read More
SERA-meeting
Stewardship4R Event Explores How to Minimize Phosphorus Losses
July 17, 2017
This year the Southern Extension and Research Activity (SERA) – 17; will be meeting in Oregon, OH, from August 14-17. Read More
Students Soybean Field
StewardshipCCA 4R Study Guide Available
July 17, 2017
In June the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI) released the Certified Crop Advisor (CCA) 4R Nutrient Management Specialist (4R NMS) Read More
Soil soybean closeup
FertilizerThe 4Rs and Potassium
July 17, 2017
Are we meeting crop K needs? Using the 4R nutrient stewardship approach of selecting the right source at the right Read More
Soil Young Corn
StewardshipTop 10 Themes from the 2017 4R Nutrient Stewardship Sum…
July 17, 2017
Preserving water quality while feeding another 2 billion people by 2050 is the challenge facing North America’s farmers and its Read More
Soybean Field Sunset
Crop InputsWhich is Better for Soybeans: Fall or Spring Applicatio…
July 17, 2017
There have been many questions about fall versus spring applications of phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) to soybeans, writes Dr. T. Read More
corn-potassium-deficiency-University-of-Minnesota-Extension
Crop InputsRecognizing Potassium Deficiency Symptoms in Crops
July 17, 2017
Some crops exhibit characteristic deficiency symptoms when adequate amounts of K are not available for growth and development, according to Read More
ManagementComplexity in Agriculture: The Rise (and Fall?) of Mons…
July 17, 2017
Sometimes it seems as if the ag world is changing so fast that we can barely keep up with it Read More
Crop InputsMonsanto: Illegal, Improper Use at Root of Drift Proble…
July 14, 2017
Monsanto isn’t backing down from the position that its tool — the Roundup Ready Xtend dicamba-tolerant system for soybeans and Read More
Soybean Closeup
Crop InputsMissouri Lifts Dicamba Ban, Issues Stricter Application…
July 14, 2017
The Missouri Department of Agriculture has lifted its barely week-old ban on new dicamba technologies, which have been at the Read More