“It’s not just planting the crop and watching it grow. It’s a very rewarding sequence of things; to see the crop grow, to see it mature and develop and to be successful … It’s just very rewarding.”Bill Hoffman
Name: Bill Hoffman
Location: Columbus, Wisconsin
Years farming: 37 years
My family: I have been married to my wife, Julia, since 1976. She is an RN who works at Columbus Community Hospital in the surgery department, and is an active member of the Columbus community serving on the school board. We have two daughters, Anne and Kate, each of whom are married and have kids of their own.
How I came to be a farmer: I was raised on a dairy farm that also raised hogs and chickens. We farmed enough alfalfa and corn to feed the animals. When I was finishing college, my brother Steve asked if I could help him with his new, larger farm. While I was working with him, the opportunity to buy my farm came up and I went for it. I have been trying to figure out what I would do when I grow up ever since.
The best thing about being a farmer: I enjoy the variety of tasks that I do as a farmer. I can be an accountant, a mechanic, and a tractor operator all before breakfast. I own my own business and am therefore my own boss. I also enjoy seeing the crop come up and change throughout the year. I also enjoy working in an international industry. Gone are the days of a single farmer feeding himself. Today, our industry is connected across the nation and across the globe. Farming has allowed me to become involved in local, national, and international farm organizations.
My personal philosophy on farming: Farming in the U.S. has always been family oriented. My personal philosophy is that even though the definition of a family farm is changing, i.e. it is much larger than in days past, the country, the world, and nature are better served by family farms than other styles of farming. We are able to produce a high quality product and preserve the land while we do it.
For more information about corn farming in Wisconsin, please visit: http://www.wicorn.org