Rows of healthy agricultural soybean crops. Beautiful sunset landscape.

Tjeerdsma, Powell, Bones Awarded at 2019 AgOutlook

Dec 18, 2019

The South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotion Council presented their “Visionary Leadership Award” to Lynn Tjeerdsma. The South Dakota Soybean Association presented their “Dedicated and Distinguished Award” to Brad Powell and “Soybean Advocate of the Year Award” to Walt Bones.

“Visionary Leadership Award”

The South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotion Council’s “Visionary Leadership Award” goes to someone who has made significant contributions to agriculture in South Dakota. It is a privilege and honor to present this year’s award to Lynn Tjeerdsma for his lifelong work for the industry.

Since beginning his career in Washington D.C. in 1989, Lynn Tjeerdsma has worked on a total of six Farm Bills. Lynn served as a Senior Policy Advisor for South Dakota Senator John Thune. He was responsible for agriculture, agricultural trade, natural resources, and energy issues. These assignments he held for Sen. Thune during the drafting of the 2008, 2014 and 2018 Farm Bills. He also administered two Farm Bills while working in various positions at the USDA.

Lynn has served as Assistant Deputy Administrator for Farm Programs, Assistant to the Administrator, Branch Chief, and Program Specialist at USDA’s Farm Service Agency’s national headquarters. He has also been the County Executive Director at Moody County, South Dakota and Cass County, Nebraska county FSA offices.

Lynn grew up on a diversified crop and livestock family farm located in South Central South Dakota. This farm was homesteaded by his great, great grandfather in 1883. He farmed full time from 1971 to 1989 when he accepted a position as a legislative assistant for agriculture and trade, to US Senator Larry Pressler. It was in this position where he assisted in drafting the 1990 Farm Bill.

Lynn is married with five children and 10 grandchildren. He is currently retired.

“Dedicated and Distinguished Award”

The SD Soybean Association’s “Dedicated and Distinguished Award” was presented to Brad Powell in appreciation of his dedication, leadership and distinguished years of service to the soybean industry.

Brad has spent his entire life involved in agriculture, growing up on a diversified crop and livestock operation near Chamberlain, SD. He attended South Dakota State University and majored in agronomy, graduating in December 1982.

Brad’s professional career began in January 1983 as a sales representative in the crop protection industry and has devoted nearly 37 years with the same company. He is currently serving as a key account manager for Bayer.

He has served on professional boards and his local church board. Specifically, Brad served on the SD Soybean Association board as an industry representative. Here, he shared his insight and experience on several projects, most notably the “Hungry for Truth” campaign targeting consumer outreach.

Brad along with his wife, Jill, have three children and operate a small farm near Sherman, SD.

“Advocate of the Year Award”

The SD Soybean Association’s “Advocate of the Year Award” was presented to Walt Bones for his demonstration of excellent leadership and contributions to agriculture and the soybean industry in South Dakota.

Walt was born and raised on the family farm that his great grandfather homesteaded in 1879, southwest of Sioux Falls.

Walt’s past involvement includes work with South Dakota Farm Bureau, South Dakota Corn Growers, South Dakota Cattlemen’s Association, Minnehaha County Planning and Zoning Board, Parker School Board, South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard’s Ag Advisory Council and more.

He currently serves on the Avera Foundation Board, Avera Rural Cancer Task Force and Groundworks – Midwest Board and Rush-Co Board of directors.

After serving as South Dakota’s Secretary of Agriculture from 2011-2013, he returned to his family’s diversified crop, beef and dairy operation.

These awards were presented at South Dakota Soybean Association’s AgOutlook Conference and Trade Show.