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DAA: F. Howard Halderman

F. Howard Halderman

Wabash, IN | Distinguished Ag Alumni: 2012

F. Howard Halderman is the thirdgeneration head of one of the largest family-owned professional farm management and real estate organizations in the United States. His grandparents established the business in 1930, his father joined it in 1958, and Howard came on board in 1988. Today, he oversees 40 full- and part-time staff members who manage 625 farms in 22 states with a market value of more than $1 billion. The company also sells and acquires 150 properties and performs 500 appraisals annually. Halderman knows his way around a farm and around the business. He worked on his family’s grain and livestock farm in Wabash, Indiana, and was active in FFA and 4-H. He spent summer breaks from college interning at the farm management company. When he returned to the business full time after graduation, his father allowed him “to try things, to be creative,” he says. “Not everything worked, but having that latitude at a relatively young age really helped in terms of growing the business over time.” Today, Halderman affects the agricultural sector on many fronts. While his activities vary every day, at its core the company represents landowners. Typical farm management services range from determining optimum crop rotations and tillage practices that comply with government regulations to marketing the commodities. The company’s work on flexible leasing arrangements has transformed tenant-landlord relationships into profitable risk-sharing ventures with long-term stability. He is also involved in the real estate side of the business and in setting strategic direction for the company’s growth. Expanding services are natural offshoots of his grandfather’s founding focus: “To do for your farm what you would do if you had the time and the experience.” Halderman and his wife Kari have three children, and he supports many of their activities, especially coaching sports. Like the business, his commitment to his profession and community is something he both inherited and embraces: “It’s a belief we’ve always had as a family — giving back.”