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One farmer’s tribute to Indiana’s Extension corn specialist

Tom J. Bechman Ken Simpson, Morristown, Ind.
APPRECIATIVE: Ken Simpson, Morristown, Ind., appreciates the time Bob Nielsen and other Purdue specialists and students have invested in helping him and his neighbors learn about crops.
This farmer says thank you to Bob Nielsen, Indiana’s 2020 Honorary Master Farmer.

Recognizing Bob Nielsen as an Honorary Master Farmer for his contributions to Indiana agriculture for nearly four decades is long overdue. Yet it took one very persistent farmer to officially throw Nielsen’s name into the hat for recognition.

Ken Simpson, Morristown, Ind., says he’s learned perhaps more than the researchers and students who have assisted him in various projects at his farm over the last few years. He’s indebted to all of them, and especially to Nielsen.

He penned these words to thank Nielsen for his efforts:

“I’ve been privileged to work with Dr. Nielsen the past eight years on full field studies on our farm. Most of us have attended a meeting to hear him explain his findings and data. But what most haven’t seen is the way he obtains his data.

“Our studies for the next year start the day we finish harvesting the field. Over the winter, he refines what we will test next season. There is a tremendous amount of thought that goes into each field. Then there’s nonstop scouting of that field. I’ve walked with him on many occasions.

“The way he scouts these fields, you would think it was his field. In a way, it is. The knowledge I’ve obtained from those walks is priceless!

“I got to see the real guy behind all his research that not many get to experience. A truly dedicated researcher with one goal in mind, and that’s to pass his data on to Indiana farmers to help them make decisions on their farms for the better.”

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