Farm Credit Affiliation
1st Farm Credit Services
Russell and Marilyn's Perspective
Russell and Marilyn Rosenboom joined the Cultivating Master Farmers program in 2005 as Master Farmers, bringing with them their passion for agriculture, a dedication to mentoring and helping young farmers and a solid example of a husband-and-wife farming partnership
The Cultivating Master Farmers program -- sponsored by 1st Farm Credit Services, Farm Credit of Illinois, GROWMARK, Illinois Farm Bureau, Monsanto and Prairie Farmer -- is designed to unite different generations of Illinois farmers through the exchange of ideas, knowledge and production experience. Through the program, the Rosenbooms have helped to mentor more than 50 young farmer couples with a willingness to share both their farming background and their personal challenges.
“It is an inspiration to see young farmers we have been associated with through the program grow in their successful farming careers,” they say. “The Cultivating Master Farmer program provides us an opportunity to share more than 56 years of farming experience with many young farmers and couples. We benefit from their eagerness to learn and adapt new technology to raise the bar higher.”
Farming 5,470 acres across five counties spanning both eastern and western Illinois, the Rosenbooms were proud to hand down the legacy of farming to their two sons. After farming the western Illinois land for 21 years, Russ and Marilyn have
passed the hands-on farming to four younger farmers from that area.
In addition to young Illinois farmers, Russell and Marilyn have also shared their enthusiasm and wisdom with farmers from Australia, Holland, Germany and Denmark as well as interns from Parkland and Blackhawk junior colleges. The Rosenbooms remain committed to sharing their lifelong knowledge of farming with young farmers, with the goal of seeing every agriculturalist succeed.
“We have been involved in the FFA International worker exchange and the Outstanding Young Farmer of America programs,” they say. “Each has been an enrichment to our family and our community. They’ve provided exchange of ideas and friendships worldwide.”
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