Tom and Anita Wall, who are pork farmers in Johnson County near Iowa City, Iowa have been named the January winners of the "Gary Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award." Iowa Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig will present the award to the Wall family on Wednesday, Jan. 28 at the Coalition to Support Iowa Farmer's booth at the Iowa Pork Congress in Des Moines. The "Big Show" which airs on both WHO and WMT radio, will broadcast live at the presentation from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
"It is great to be able to honor the Wall family with the Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award. They are another example of the outstanding livestock producers we have across the state," says Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey. "Livestock farmers rightfully take great pride in how they care for their animals, protect our land and serve our communities and this award is an opportunity to highlight the great job they do."
Expanded hog production to bring son into farming operation
Tom and Anita have three children, Rachel, Greg and Sarah, and farm 900 acres and have a 3,000 head wean-to-finish hog operation. They have expanded their pork operation so their son Greg could join the farm. The family was nominated for the award by Ed Ulch who highlighted the great pride the family has in their farm and how they care for their land and their animals.
In addition to their work on the farm, the Wall family is very active in the community. Tom is a 4-H leader and has been Swine Superintendent at the Johnson County Fair in addition to serving as the Secretary for the Johnson County Fair Association for the past 32 years. They have also hosted a tour at their farm last summer for community members to help educate the public about agriculture.
Good neighbors make extra effort to help others in need
Ulch went on to say that the Wall family is, "the ideal neighbor. They make the extra effort to help those in need. They are a perfect candidate for the Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award."
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 [email protected].