(Photo: Iowa Soybean Association)
National award celebrates Iowa soybean farmer’s legacy
December 8, 2022 | Aaron Putze, APR
An Iowa farmer who dedicated countless hours to an industry he cherished is being celebrated and memorialized by the United Soybean Board (USB).
The Tom Oswald Legacy Award was announced during a meeting of the United Soybean Board this week in St. Charles, MO. It will be presented annually to a person or group that’s made a positive and lasting impact on the soybean industry and checkoff.
“We want to continue honoring our friend,” said an emotional Ralph Lott, USB Chair and New York soybean farmer. “Tom left a lasting impact on each of us. We can’t think of a better way to continue his legacy than with this award.”
Nominations are being accepted through Jan. 10, 2023, at https://www.unitedsoybean.org/tom-oswald-legacy-award/. The inaugural Tom Oswald Legacy Award will be presented at Commodity Classic held in Orlando in March.
Oswald passed unexpectedly in June while farming near his hometown of Cleghorn. He served fellow soybean farmers in a variety of roles for more than 20 years, first on the county level and then as an Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) director. He served as ISA president (2014-15) and was a long-time USB director, including membership on its executive committee.
Susanne remembers her husband as an avid reader and dedicated volunteer farmer leader. He was also insatiably curious about all things, including topics and issues pertaining to soybeans and agriculture.
“He got that curiosity trait from his father, and it served him well,” said Susanne, who joined Lott for the award’s unveiling. “I’m just so proud of Tom and all he accomplished. He wasn’t anywhere done serving.”
Tom was an irreplaceable colleague, added Lott, known for his upbeat attitude and endless optimism.
“He was a friend, advocate for agriculture and visionary for the checkoff. Tom was also a friend to all, a good ol’ Iowa farm boy and heartfelt leader for soybean farmers.
“Tom made the world a brighter and better place.”