JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Three individuals were honored with the Missouri Farm Bureau Outstanding Service to Agriculture Award December 5. The presentations were made by MFB President Blake Hurst during the annual meeting’s opening session at the Lake of the Ozarks.
Each year the award is given to select individuals who have demonstrated their desire to work closely with Farm Bureau and have supported agriculture throughout their careers. Added to the list of honorees this year were: Dr. Bud Hertzog, former state legislator and veterinarian; Dr. Tom Payne, Dean of the University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; and Dan Swearengen, retired chairman of the Division of Technical and Applied Sciences and General Farm Manager of agricultural operations for the College of the Ozarks.
Robert ‘Bud’ Hertzog has had a general veterinary medicine practice for 60 years and still practices and manages the Lee’s Summit Animal Hospital (where his son, David, is also a veterinarian). He served as the official veterinarian of the Kansas City American Royal Livestock and Horse Show for 50 years and continues to serve the Kansas City Zoo, now as a consultant, and as their veterinarian for 22 years. He owns and operates livestock and grain farms in both Jackson and Johnson counties with his sons and grandson. For 16 years Hertzog represented Jackson County during four terms in the state legislature. Hertzog received his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Missouri in 1956 and has been named a Distinguished Alumnus of both the University’s College of Agriculture and College of Veterinary Medicine.
Tom Payne has served as Vice Chancellor for Agriculture and Dean of the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR) since January 1999. Under his leadership, the college’s research programs have grown with the recruitment of world-class faculty members and an increase in private funds raised in support of the College. Payne brought the efforts of MU Extension and the MU Research Centers closer together, leading to the formation of the CAFNR Office of Research and Extension. He has built strong connections with the college of Engineering and School of Medicine. Those efforts lead to jointly affiliated units for bioengineering and biochemistry between the schools. The Bond Life Sciences Center was built during his tenure and opened in 2004. Before stepping into the administrative side of academia, Payne was internationally known for his work as an entomologist.
Dan Swearengen worked his entire 39-year professional career in the Agriculture Department at the College of the Ozarks. He retired this summer as chairman of the Division of Technical and Applied Sciences and General Farm Manager over all agricultural operations at the college. He began at the college teaching agribusiness classes and became an Associate Professor of Agriculture, while also advising students on classes, careers, problems, goals and life in general. For 32 years Swearengen managed the college’s hog farm and was involved in the complete construction and renovation of that farm. The department has grown in student numbers and improved facilities and equipment with his help. Dan is also a charter member of the Taney County Farm Bureau and serves on the board.