The South Dakota State University College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences and College of Education and Human Sciences will recognize four individuals with the Eminent Leaders in Agriculture, Family and Community honor during a banquet on Sept. 20 at the McCrory Gardens Education and Visitor Center in Brookings. The 2019 Eminent Leaders in Agriculture, Family, and Community are Ludwig Hohm of Yale, Donna Adrian of White River, Gary Cammack of Union Center, and Ann Vostad of Volga.
Established in 1927, the Eminent Leaders in Agriculture, Family and Community Award Program (formerly known as the Eminent Farmer/Rancher and Homemaker Award Program) recognizes South Dakota citizens for contributions of leadership and service on the local, state and national level. Each year SDSU selects four individuals to
honor based on confidential nominations. The nominations are reviewed and honorees are recommended by a committee of faculty members, administrators, SDSU Extension personnel and past recipients. The honorees are approved by the deans of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences and College of Education and Human Sciences.
The honoree’s photos join the more than 300 portraits of Eminent Leaders in Agriculture, Family, and Community that are displayed in the Hall of Fame portrait gallery located in Berg Agricultural Hall on the campus of SDSU.
Ludwig Hohm runs a diversified farming operation near Huron where he grows corn, soybeans, wheat, alfalfa, and grass, as well as having a cow-calf operation. Actively working to preserve the land for generations to come, Hohm practices no-till farming and utilizes cover crop rotations to improve soil health.
This summer he hosted a South Dakota Soil Health Zone School on his farm. “My dad raised me to value being a good steward of the land. My goal is to leave the land in a better condition than when I started farming it,” he said.
Hohm farmed with his dad for 40 years until his passing three years ago. Hohm also runs a custom hay grinding business and sells farm equipment. Also, he previously owned an implement dealership in Webster for 21 years and sold crop insurance. He attended South Dakota State University and graduated with a degree in agronomy, as well as met his wife, Julie.
While in college, he remained very active in the family farming operation. Hohm Farms has a history of being early adopters of new technology and modern farming practices. After graduating, he returned to Hohm Farms and assumed more responsibility for managing the operation. Hohm, together with his wife, Julie, raised their son, Jesse, and daughter, Susanna Strutz on the farm.
Hohm has invested in the future of agriculture through his involvement in many organizations on the local, state and national levels. He served on the Farmers Elevator Cooperation in Yale for 15 years. He was also an active member of the South Dakota Corn Utilization Council for nine years, serving as president, vice president and secretary. During his term, he was influential in helping to develop the ethanol industry in South Dakota. He also served on the United States Grains Council board and was chairman of the Trade Policy Committee in Washington, D.C., for two years.
Not only has Hohm exercised leadership in agricultural organizations, but also for the improvement of his community. He is currently serving a second term on the Huron Area Chamber and Visitors Bureau Board of Directors and is a member of the agriculture committee. “I love our community and actively being a part of it. It is awesome to work with so many people who really care about the community and are extraordinary volunteers,” he said.
For 43 years he has been involved on various boards and committees of the school he attended growing up, James Valley Christian School in Huron. He currently serves as chairman of the school’s building committee, in which he has helped guide the school through several major expansion and building projects.
Hohm is very involved in his local church and also served on the national level on the Leadership Board and as chairman of his denomination’s central district, which is comprised of six states. Hohm and Julie are also musicians. He sings and Julie plays piano and organ, performing at weddings, funerals, church and a variety of other functions. Hohm used to be part of a traveling quartet that began in college and continued for several years after.
For his significant accomplishments and contributions to South Dakota agriculture, Hohm has received a variety of notable awards, including being named an Outstanding Farmer by the Huron Area Chamber and Visitors Bureau, Agriculture Person of the Year by the South Dakota Corn Growers and Farmer of the Year by Farm Credit Services of America.