Born in south central Illinois in New Athens, on a livestock and grain farm. Had beef cattle, swine, and dairy. In school, did FFA animal projects. Went to University of Illinois in Education. Judged livestock. Masters did genetic study of swine production. Worked with livestock classes and judging. Dr. Howard Miller influenced him; Dick Lyle, swine specialist, also led him to education career. Taught in the Extension programs.
First job in 1968 in McDonough County in western Illinois. Specialty in livestock for three years. 1971-1973 to U. of I. swine nutritional research barn as manager. Al Jensen, Gene Becker there. Moved to Peoria as area livestock advisor. Extension transfers research based information to producers. Managing techniques, housing, rations, carcass evaluation. Have producers adapt new technology to make farming more sustainable. Seminars, field days. One-on-one consultations. Internet, email requests. On site assessments. Development of web-based science sites.