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CCFB News» June 2019

Combining a Passion for Teaching, History, and Agriculture

06/18/2019 @ 10:35 am

Farm Bureau’s newest board member, Todd Price, combines his passion for teaching, history, and agriculture in northern Cook County.  For many years, Price served as Director of Wagner Farm in Glenview, Illinois.  For 18 years, Price directed the operations of the Farm, including overseeing the dairy operation and vegetable production.  Inherent to Price’s role at Wagner Farm was ensuring that the urban public can see and participate in a working farm.  Price now serves at Glenview Park District Superintendent.

 

As Superintendent, Price no longer has daily duties at Wagner Farm.  Instead it’s his responsibility to ensure that the farm’s staff have the resources and support that they need to ensure that the mission of Wagner Farm continues.

 

Historic Wagner Farm is one of the last working dairy farms in Cook County.  The farm offers urban families a hands-on opportunity to learn more about Cook County and Illinois farming.  The farm is also scheduled for a series of upgrades to facilitate better visitor flow, including reworking the crosswalk across Wagner Road and to increase accessibility for compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act.  In addition, the farm will construct a farm-focused “playscape” in the now horse pasture.  The upgrades will coincide with Wagner Farm’s 20th anniversary.   

 

Prior to joining Wagner Farm, Price spent his youth on his 164-year-old family farm in southwest Iowa near the border of Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri.  The area is full of river valleys and bottom ground.  Price’s family grows corn and soybeans and have a cow/calf operation and feedlot. 

 

Growing up, he saw the changing of an agricultural era- diverse farms with pigs, sheep, cattle, and chickens gave way to primarily commodity crops like corn and soybeans.  As fence rows and livestock pastures were removed, many farms transitioned to no-till or minimal till operations to preserve soil integrity.  Price’s brother, David currently runs his family farm and Price frequently returns to the family farm to help as much as possible.

 

After college, Price opted not to return to the farm and instead chose to pursue a teaching career.  Almost by accident, he ended up in the museum field.  This path led him and his family from Des Moines, Iowa to Lafayette, Indiana to Glenview, Illinois.  Price’s adult daughter has returned to Iowa and is studying to be a physical therapist.

 

During his tenure at Wagner Farm, Price had the opportunity to introduce urban families to farming and to share with them an appreciation of the amount of hard work that goes into growing and raising food.  Price brings his love of teaching, history, and agriculture to the Farm Bureau as the newest board member.

 

Cook County Farm Bureau® is the county’s largest general farm organization and is dedicated to bridging the gap between farmers and urban consumers.  Through education programs targeting youth and their parents and programs designed to connect farmers with potential consumers, Farm Bureau members are actively engaging in conversations about food and the shared values between farmers and consumers.