Alumni News, Spring 2011

Iowa State Fair Earns Advanced Degrees From Ffa

The entire Ronald Zelle family of Waverly was awarded American FF A Degrees at the organization’s national convention in October.  Ronald (’83 agricultural and life sciences education, MS ‘87) is the agricultural education instructor and the FFA adviser for Nashua Plainfield Schools.  He was awarded the Honorary American FFA Degree teacher award in recognition of his educational achievements.
His wife, Mary Beth (’86 agricultural and life sciences education), received the Honorary American FFA degree in the other community members division.  Their daughter, Debra, a junior majoring in horticulture,  and son, Benjamin, a sophomore majoring in agricultural business and computer science, were awarded American FF A Degrees for their participation in FFA.

Young Alum Makes A Statement As Entrepreneur

Mike Taylor (’03 agricultural studies) was among young Iowa State Alumni named “STATE ment Makers” by the ISU Alumni Association for their early personal and professional accomplishments.  Taylor says entrepreneurship is a way of life in his household.  After minoring in entrepreneurship at Iowa State, he built Taylor Companies from the ground up.  Today he and his wife, Lindsay, are partners in several businesses—including row crop and beef production agriculture, wholesale distribution, commercial real estate, property management, retail pharmacies and e-commerce retail businesses.  And, he says, his 4-year-old daughter runs a mean lemonade stand.

Listen Up: Alumni Lectures Offered As Podcasts

James Borel (’78 agricultural business), executive vice president of DuPont, presented the 2011 Carl and Marjory Hertz Lecture on Emerging Issues in Agriculture in April at Iowa State.  Borel presented “How Agricultural Innovation and Collaboration Will Shape the Future of the World” drawing on his experience leading DuPont’s production agriculture businesses, DuPont Crop Protection and Pioneer Hi-Bred.  He sharedideas on how advances in agricultural science will play a major role in shaping the future of global society and addressing world hunger.

Charles Stewart, Jr. (’00 agricultural biochemistry), research associate at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in San Diego, offered the lecture “Fighting Hunger: A DN A Engineer’s Path to Science and Success” at Iowa State in March. Stewart was the first graduate of Science Bound, Iowa State’s program to increase the number of ethnically diverse Iowa youth pursuing science, technology, engineering and math careers.

Neil E. Harl (’55 agricultural education, MS ’65 economics), shared leadership lessons learned throughout his career as he gave the 2010 William K. Deal Endowed Leadership Lecture in October. Harl is a Charles F. Curtis Distinguished Professor in Agriculture and Life Sciences and emeritus professor of economics specializing in farm finance, taxation, estate planning, business planning and agricultural law. Harl’s presentation was titled, “Building an Enduring Leadership Platform.”

Alumni Given Top Honors By Isu Alumni Association And Isu Foundation

Two college alumni were honored at the 2011 ISU Alumni Association and the ISU Foundation Distinguished Awards Ceremony in April.  Rodney Ganey (’78 sociology, MS ‘81) of Henderson, Nev., was presented the Distinguished Alumni Award by the ISU Alumni Association.  Roger Underwood (’80 agricultural business) of Ames, received the Knoll Cardinal and Gold Award from the ISU Foundation.

1948 Grad Inducted To Isu Athletics Hall Of Fame

Ray Wehde, in the white jersey (’48 dairy industry), was one of 10 alumni who were inducted into the ISU Athletics Hall of Fame in October.  He is pictured enjoying a quick pick up game with his twin brother Roy (’48 dairy industry), in the red jersey, who also played for the Cyclones.  Ray is considered Iowa State’s first NBA draftee.  He was inducted into the Hall of Fame for basketball and track and field.  His name appears among the 129 Hall of Famers on the All-America Walls, a new display around Jack Trice Stadium.  “Enrolling as freshmen and going onto that beautiful campus with its buildings and everything, now that was awe-inspiring for a couple of country boys,’’ says Wehde in an interview with the Sioux City Journal.  “I remember the freshman team was open to anyone and sometimes there were 90 kids there trying to catch the coach’s eye.’’