Four ag professionals inducted into the Colorado Agriculture Hall of Fame
February 23, 2017
Roggen farmer Marc Arnusch received the Rising Star in Colorado Agriculture award at the Farm Credit Colorado Agriculture Hall of Fame Banquet on Wednesday. The banquet took place in conjunction with the Governor’s Forum on Colorado Agriculture in Denver.
DENVER — The four inductees into the Colorado Agriculture Hall of Fame took different paths to success. But they all shared a dedication to the industry.
The banquet took place Wednesday at the Renaissance Denver Stapleton Hotel. The inductees are Bill Webster, Bill Markham, Dale McCall and Charlie Bartlett.
Webster, a Greeley resident, was the only inductee in this year's class who did not grow up on a farm. That didn't stop him from pursuing a career in the industry.
He founded Webster Land and Cattle Co. in 1961. According to Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture Don Brown, anyone who raised cattle in Colorado knew Webster's business.
Webster decided to throw his hat in another arena after retirement in 1991 — one common in his family. He went into politics, first serving as a Weld County commissioner, followed by time in the Colorado Legislator. His time in politics isn't unusual for his family. His daughter, Perry Buck, is a state representative for District 49 and his son-in-law in Congressman Ken Buck.
When driving down Interstate 25 near Berthoud, there's a sign that reads "M&M Farms" with a Coors logo on it.
That's where Markham grew up and made his living, growing barley for Coors along with sugar beets. He's the third generation in his family to grow both.
Markham shows his passion through his work, Brown said.
Markham spent many years trying to get an FFA chapter into the Thompson School District. Finally, after about 30 years, he got someone to listen. And the program has taken off around the community.
It has always been about education for Dale McCall. The Yuma farmer dedicated his life to the education and the classroom. He was an agriculture teacher and a professor at Northeastern Junior College in Sterling. McCall's time as an educator influenced many in the Colorado agriculture sector.
Even Brown had McCall as a professor at NJC.
Many said Bartlett was, "gone too soon." He died Feb. 26, 2016.
Bartlett's son, Andy, spoke on his father's behalf, and said Charlie had to take over the family farm at the age of 20, after his father died.
But his father took the role full force, Andy said, never complaining.
He didn't let the farm he needed to run stop him from advocating and working for other farmers. Charlie spent time with Colorado Corn and spent many years working with water. He was the chairman of the Colorado Water Alliance and was the director of the South Platte Ditch Co. for 42 years.
The inductees will join agriculture leaders in the hall of fame for the state, which dates to 1981.