Congratulations to Willie Bokma, Class 37 and his wife Valerie on their daughter Julia who will be graduating on March 15 from University of Washington in Seattle with her Doctor of Nurse Practitioner Degree. Julia will do her residency at a Veteran's Administration hospital somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. Most recently, Julia has been an oncology nurse at Swedish Hospital.
Congratulations to Stephen Parrott, Class 39 who was recently selected to receive a Brave and Bold Award from the University of Idaho - honoring young alumni who have an outstanding career achievement or record of volunteerism. Parrott is a former U of I Student Body President and is currently employed with Northwest Farm Credit Services.
Please keep in your thoughts and prayers Alan Martinson, Class 27 and his wife Virginia. Alan recently discovered that he has been diagnosed with prostate cancer. Alan has selected to have surgery in early April. Alan serves as Latah County Weed Superintendent and is also an LIA trustee.
Thanks to everyone who helped to make the 2020 LIA Auction a success. The goal of the auction as set by the Board of Trustees was $100,000. At Graduation, Chairman of the Auction Committee Kyle Woods, Class 32 reported the results of the auction were in excess of $113,000.
During the course of the Auction two special events took place. Don Dixon, Class 15 was honored as an LIA Founder and had several members of his family present at the Founder's Table. Don served in a variety of roles in Idaho Agriculture and government service and has retired to his farm in New Sweden, Idaho outside of Idaho Falls. Also recognized was TLK Dairy of Mountain Home as the Legacy Farm Family. The award is sponsored by Ada County Farm Bureau. Their County President, Neal Durrant, Class 34 presented a framed photo of the Ketterling Family following the showing of the Legacy video. Members of the Ketterling Family were on stage for the recognition and included the following LIA Alumni: Terry Ketterling, Class 9; Tony Ketterling, Class 31; daughter Launa Fowler, Class 32 and husband Nate Fowler, Class 33.
Congratulations to the following that were honored as Lifetime Members at Graduation on Friday, February 28:
Trisha Cracroft, Class 39
Rod Endow, Class 13
Jacob Gisler, Class 39
Dean Langley, Class 9
David Marchbanks, Class 12
Kelly Olson, Class 16
Stephen Parrott, Class 39
Siska Reece, Class 38
The following LIA Alumni received special recognition as ten-year members of LIA:
Valentine Celaya, Class 29
Patty Jo Courtney, Class 29
Benjamin Kelly, Class 29
Don McFarland, Class 1
Jim Miller, Class 29
Kim O'Neill, Class 27
Susan Smith, Class 29
Cornel Van Dam, Class 22
The "Wayne Meyer Statesman Award", was presented by Karleen Meyer, LIA Affiliate Member in honor of her late husband. The recipient this year was Brent Reinke, Class 40. Reinke has a long history of public service which includes: Filer City Council 1986-1994; Twin Falls County Commissioner 1994-1997; Director of Idaho Department of Juvenile Corrections 1997-2006; and Director of Idaho Department of Corrections 2006-2014. Reinke has served under four Idaho Governors. Reinke is currently serving as a Twin Falls County Commissioner again and is actively engaged in writing a new Comprehensive Plan for Twin Falls County.
The "Dave Sparrow Stake in the Ground Award" was presented to LIA Class 40 member Mike Meyers. Mike currently serves as Deputy Watermaster for District 63 in Caldwell. The recipient of this award is selected by class members, who they identify has improved the most since starting the class.
A new award was presented for the first time, "Ramsey Innovation Award" honoring the life of Samantha Ramsey, Class 35. This award was established as a memorial by Dick Rush, LIA Affiliate Member and his wife Nancy who were at graduation to present the award. Receiving the award was Bo Isham, Class 40. Bo and his wife Kayla own and operate a company they established in 2016 - Ag Idaho Consulting. The company assists farmers with information related to commodity inputs. Bo currently works with several farmers in the Treasure Valley who farm collectively over 17,000 acres.
Excitement built during the Graduation of Class 40 when Former Director of Agriculture Dick Rush, LIA Affiliate Member now retired and Rick Phillips, Class 1 currently with Simplot Company stepped to the stage to provide history of the formation of LIA in 1985. Their presentation was followed by the announcement of graduate 1000 from the program - Brett Ingles, Ingles works for the NRCS in Boise's State Office. With the completion of Class 40 there have been a total of 1,018 LIA graduates.