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Master Farmers: 50 years since modern era began

Tammi and Del Unger
VETERAN MASTERS: Tammi and Del Unger are part of the Master Farmer Class of 2013.
Nominate someone to be part of the golden anniversary class.

It was 1968 when James C. Thompson, managing editor of Prairie Farmer, decided it was time to bring back the once-popular Master Farmer program. Discontinued in 1935 during the Great Depression, the program was reinstated in 1968, and 10 outstanding Indiana farmers were recognized and featured in the Indiana edition of Prairie Farmer.

Now it’s time to nominate Master Farmers for the golden anniversary class of 2018! That’s where you come in. Only readers can nominate Master Farmers.

One question that always comes up is who has already received the Master Farmer award. You can find the entire list at Scroll to the bottom of that story to access the nomination form.

To refresh your memory, here are the winners from select years.

1968: Mark Anson, George Corya, Richard Criag and Gerald Tarnow (still living); Guy Beerbower, Ernest Miller, William Nash, Kenneth Perkins, James Scherschel and Philip Warner (deceased)

1993 (silver anniversary): Gene Brune, Wayne McCutchan, James Pettigrew and Jerry Rulon

2008: Robert Bishop, Thomas Jonson, Jim Lankford, Rory Walker and Tom Turpin, honorary Master Farmer

2013: Kevin Cox, David Ring, Kenneth and Jane Rulon, Del and Tammi Unger, and Fred Whitford, honorary Master Farmer

The list for the 2018 class is blank and waiting to be filled in. To nominate someone, find the nomination form on the website at the bottom of the Master Farmers section. Click on the orange button and download the form.

Or to obtain a written copy, write to: Indiana Prairie Farmer, P.O. Box 247, Franklin, IN 461341; call 317-431-8766; or email [email protected]. You will receive a nomination form promptly.

The Master Farmer program is co-sponsored by the Purdue University College of Agriculture.

Remember, nominations are due by Feb. 15!

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