The purpose of the Defiance County Agriculture Hall of Fame is to recognize outstanding contributions by an individual to agriculture.
Congratulations to our 2019 Agricultural Hall of Fame Inductees;
James F. Joost
Farmer & Ag Business: Defiance County, Ohio
Spouse: Brenda (Joost) Penner
Mr. Joost was born and raised on a Mark Township farm in Defiance County where the family raised grain, chickens and hogs. He started farming in 1970 as a sophomore in high school raising hogs and grain with his dad Lorenz all while being an active member and leader in the local church youth group. He graduated from Fairview High School in 1972 and everyone else knew early on that farming was an important part of his future. Jim married Brenda in 1972 and they had 4 children Jamie, Jim, Jr., Ross and Bo. Jim passed away unexpectedly in 2005 and is being honored for his profound impact that he had on people and the farming community.
Jim started serving the Defiance County area by selling Rupp seeds from 1983 to 1987. He then became a Pioneer Hi-Bred Seed Representative in 1987. The seed business started in the west chicken coop with Jim saying “we’ll grow the seed business slowly,” but in reality, Jim’s product and service made sure it was one of the fastest growing seed dealers for Pioneer. Jim was awarded multiple distinctions from Pioneer for growth and retention milestones for sales and service. In 2001, Jim then merged his farm with a friend/neighbor’s farm operation to create Spatial Ag Systems.
Jim was very passionate about bringing new ideas and practices to farmers in Defiance County to help growers increase profitability. He was one of the first farmers to practice vertical tillage, adopte the use of yield monitors, and helped growers process yield monitor data to help create management zones in fields to maximize each acre’s net profit. Jim also initiated soybean seed treatment for the seed customers to help in adverse soil and weather conditions for area farmers.
Jim held a position on the Pioneer Hi-Bred Sales Rep Council for Ohio and Michigan for several years. Jim was described as being on the “bleeding” edge of technology. Jim was intense about knowledge and ideas and often that involved people. In 1993, Jim was a founding member of a local peer-to-peer farmer group that met weekly at 6 am year-round. Members would bring topics and questions to learn from each other in a quick and structured format. They would connect with experts around Ohio and the Midwest to improve local production and farm profits.
Jim served on St. John Lutheran Church in Sherwood, Financial Board. He was a member of the Fairview Young Farmers and the FFA. He coached little league football for 5 years and was a baseball coach for many years too. Jim took his passion of farming and the seed business and translated it into coaching youth to learn more, do more, and get better.
People knew Jim as a contagious man of knowledge and passion and he was never complacent. Jim had many traits that stood him out in a crowd: he was a great communicator, he was warm and friendly. Jim’s work led to many people starting their own technology and farm businesses that still exist today.
Ted T. Pohlmann
Farmer: Defiance County, Ohio
Spouse: Carol Pohlmann
Mr. Pohlmann is a commercial grain farmer that operates in Tiffin and Adams Townships in Defiance County, and Springfield Township in Williams County. He started farming after high school with his family and attended The Ohio State University, earning a Bachelor’s of Science in Agricultural Economics. In 1967, he married Carol and they raised four children.
Mr. Pohlmann is currently involved with his son in a cash grain operation raising corn, soybeans, and wheat. Mr. Pohlmann actively uses conservation practices such as surface and subsurface tile drainage, drainage control structures, cover crops, no-till and conservation tillage, filter strips, established wildlife areas, and forest management. He has used strip tillage and developed wetlands and woodland acres for conservation stewardship practices. Mr. Pohlmann has helped with OSU field research by setting up five Defiance County sites for a three-year project, collected runoff samples and data to establish funding for conservation practices.
He served on the Jewell Grain Company Board of Directors for 11 years in leadership as secretary and president. He served on the Advisory Board for the 1st National Bank of NW Ohio and later Sky Bank. He also served on the Board of Directors for the Defiance Agricultural Research Association and is a former employee of the Defiance Soil and Water Conservation District. He served on the Board of Trustees for the Defiance County Farm Bureau and as an Advisory Council Member. Mr. Pohlmann was awarded the Outstanding NW Ohio Young Farmer of the year and named Ohio Young Farmer of the Year in 1979. Mr. Pohlmann was also honored with the Goodyear Conservation Farmer of the year by the Defiance Soil and Water Conservation District.
Ted is an active supporter of 4-H and FFA and the Defiance County Fair. He is active with the St. John Lutheran Church & School in Defiance and has served on numerous boards including stewardship, Evangelism, Trustee, Endowment Fund Advisory Board, Board of Elders and Church Council. He co-chaired the building committee and was a member of the church choir. He has also been co-chairman for Defiance County commissioner elections. Mr. Pohlmann served his country in the U.S. Army National Guard and earned the rank of Staff Sgt., assigned to the 323 Military Police Company for 6 years. He also remains a life member of the OSU Alumni Association for the College of Agriculture.
Ted has a strong work ethic and is dedicated to his faith, family and occupation. He has a conservative approach with cautious openness and progressiveness to new ideas for their life and farming operation. Ted is proud of his career, family, friends, farmstead, equipment and operation and realizes many other people helped make it all possible. Ted realizes they are all blessings beyond his control and Ted has humility and appreciation of others and their contributions.
Milo A. Crockett
Farmer: Defiance, Ohio
Spouse: Donna Crockett
Mr. Milo Crocket was born in 1932 and grew up helping the family with a wide variety of crops and livestock near Ayersville, OH. He was born in the home where he lives today and the farm grew corn, corn silage, soybeans, wheat, sugar beets, hogs and Black Angus. While an FFA student at Ayersville High School, Mr. Crockett earned his State FFA Degree and in fact it was the first State FFA Degree earned and awarded to a member of the Ayersville FFA Chapter. He graduated from Ayersville High School in 1950 and later married Donna and they raised two children, Larry and Peg.
Mr. Crockett worked at the Defiance General Motors Powertrain plant for 30 years as a foundry clerk, in which he was responsible for a wide range of inventories. Milo worked the off-farm job 3rd shift to make it possible to farm during the days and evenings.
Farming has changed for Mr. Crockett since the 1950s from a 4 bottom plow and a 1, 2, and then a 3 row corn picker to today’s modern agriculture. Milo’s first cabbed tractor was in the late 1970’s and was a 1086 International. Farm improvements and land purchases were made over time with on-farm grain storage and drainage improvements to the land.
Milo is a long term member of the Defiance County Farm Bureau. He was active for 50 years in the Ridgerunners Farm Bureau council, which met monthly to discuss issues and topics that were important to the grass-roots farm community and then elevated those issues to the county and state level. As a Farm Bureau member, Milo attended national conferences across the United States to interact with farmers and tackle legislation with elected officials.
Mr. Crockett served on the Board of Directors of the Ayersville Telephone Company for 20 years from 1995 to 2015. His tenure on the Board saw rapid expansion of cable and internet service for the rural Ayersville area. Mr. Crockett has served the Ayersville Education Foundation and is proud to have supported the Academic Scholarship for two high school students each year. He also served his township on the zoning board with the goal of having standard land and building development. He is a member of St. Paul’s United Methodist church where he has served as trustee completing several work projects for the congregation. Additionally, he served 16 years on the Board of Directors of the Standley Elevator. Serving in that leadership role, the elevator saw advancements in crop protection and nutrient management technology, established grain condos and improvements in grain handling speed that benefited all area farmers unloading grain at harvest.
Milo is known by local farmers as taking great pride in the neatness of his farm. Milo has always been willing to learn new things about farming. His nominator shared that “weeds fear him.” Milo has walked miles and miles to hoe weeds out of his fields that were missed or survived an herbicide.