Ag Hall of Achievement ceremony

Jim Schild, Alton Lerwick and Chris Cullan (from left) were among the 10 new members of the Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement recognized recently in Lincoln.

Three Panhandle residents new members of Hall of Ag Achievement

Posted March 19, 2015

Three people from the Panhandle were among 10 new members of the Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement recognized recently in Lincoln. They include Jim Schild of Scottsbluff, Extension Educator and Associate Director of the UNL Panhandle Research and Extension Center, and ag producers Chris Cullan of Hemingford and Alton Lerwick of Lyman.

Lerwick, of Lyman, is one of the pioneering no-till farmers in western Nebraska and an innovative cow-calf operator. His farm is a combination cropland and a commercial cow-calf operation. He converted to full no-till in 1994 and has gained a wealth of knowledge about differences between no-till continuous cropping and traditional wheat-fallow systems through cooperative research and extension demonstration projects with the University of Nebraska and Wyoming. Memberships include the UNL High Plains Ag Lab Advisory Board and Dryland Vision Committee, Pumpkin Creek Advisory Board, National Cattlemen Beef Association, High Plains Dry Pea Growers Association, school board, tax equalization board, Colorado Conservation Tillage Association.

Cullan, of Hemingford, has a diversified farming operation with both dryland and irrigated production. He has worked to enhance the family seed and farming operations. He has furnished land each year for university wheat variety trial plots. He has hosted trade teams from other countries to give them a look at production agriculture and has traveled abroad as a Nebraska Wheat Board representative to visit flour mills and noodle companies. Memberships include the Nebraska Crop Improvement Association, Nebraska Wheat Board, U.S. Wheat Marketing Center, Wheat Quality Committee for U.S. Wheat Farmers Cooperative Elevator Co., UNL High Plains Ag Lab Advisory Board, Nebraska Farm Bureau, and Agriculture Builders of Nebraska.

Schild has been in Extension for 32 years, 27 of those in Nebraska. He has been involved in applied research and extension in dry bean production, grape and wine production, and turf management, specifically low water use turf in western Nebraska. He developed the West Nebraska Turf and Landscape Conference; provided the weekly Lawn and Garden Show for KNEB Radio during April and May for the last 10 years; and coordinated Master Gardener training. His memberships include the Bean Improvement Cooperative, Nebraska County Extension Association, National Association of County Agricultural Agents, UNL Faculty Senate.

Schild, Cullan and Lerwick were recognized Thursday, March 12, during a banquet at the Nebraska East Union on UNL's East Campus. The Hall of Agricultural Achievement's 2015 honoree was Mike Johanns, former Nebraska Governor, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, and U.S. Senator.

Other new members of the Ag Hall of Achievement include Paul Jasa of Lincoln, Steven J. Jones of Lincoln, Jan Miller of Belden, Steve Nelson of Axtell, Jack Schinstock of Lincoln, Ben Steffen of Humboldt and Ken Vogel of Lincoln.