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Agriculture Headlines


Farm Credit IL Announces FreshRoots Directors Cup Honorees

Thu, 03 Jun 2021 15:27:32 CDT
Six young and beginning farmers and farmer couples from central and southern Illinois were named FreshRoots Directors Cup honorees this week by Farm Credit Illinois.

The Directors Cup presented by the cooperative Board of Directors celebrates young and beginning farmers committed to continuous learning and intentional living for a brighter future for their farm family business and community. Honorees receive $5,000 and a commemorative keepsake.

Cooperative members were selected by a panel of seven industry representatives– including one FCI Board member – based on a combination of each applicant’s unique farm beginnings, personal and business aspirations, and passion for building a brighter future for their farm business and community.

The Directors Cup award is part of the FreshRoots young and beginning farmers program, which provides lending assistance and learning incentives to farmers up to age 40 or in their first 10 years of farming.

The following beginning farmers were selected as 2021 Directors Cup honorees

Austin Ellison of Belleville (St. Clair County) is a third generation farmer raising alfalfa, oats, wheatlage, and timothy and fescue hay. Ellison, 23, operates his own independent contractor business – Austin M Ellison Excavation. He began farming in 2016 as the sole proprietor of his hay operation. He partners with his father on his family’s grain farm and makes management and marketing decisions and assists during planting and harvesting and with grain deliveries.

Mitchell Hinds of Kenney (Macon County) is a fourth generation corn and soybean farmer. Hinds, 25, began farming in 2012 and transitioned ownership from his grandfather to become the farm’s sole proprietor in 2015. He is also the highway commissioner for Austin Township and sells for Stone Seed and Frontline Ag Solutions. He is married to Bailee.

Lydia and Adam Holste of Altamont (Effingham County) are third generation corn, soybean, and wheat, farmers. They work with Lydia’s grandmother, parents, uncle, sister, and brother-in-law. Adam also sells DEKALB Asgrow seed and Climate FieldView. Lydia, 30, and Adam, 34, began farming full-time in 2013 and have three children – Aiden, Lane, and Addie – and are expecting a daughter in July.

Jacob Strohbeck of Alton (Madison County) is a sixth generation corn, soybean, and alfalfa farmer. He is the sole proprietor of his own operation and assists his parents – sharing equipment and labor. Strohbeck, 28, began part-time farming in 2012 and holds a full-time position as the Foster Township road commissioner and is a custom operator. He is engaged to Marissa Phillips.

Elliott Uphoff of Shelbyville (Shelby County) is a fifth generation corn and soybean farmer. Uphoff, 30, began farming in 2013, sells seed for DEKALB Asgrow, and partners with his father for equipment and labor. He and his wife Hailey have one daughter – Madeline.

Michael Yoder of Hammond (Moultrie County) is a fifth generation corn, soybean, and wheat farmer. Yoder, 30, began farming in 2013 after serving in the Air Force and partners with his grandfather and father. He and his wife Brittany have two daughters – Addison and Lucy.

Profiles of each Directors Cup honoree can be found at .


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