The Acker Farm forever planted its roots in the farming industry. Don Acker, an Ellsworth native, and his wife Mary started their farming business in 1973 in Iowa. The lifestyle of farming had won Don over at an early age as his father, Wayne was a farmer. The unfortunate death of his father led him on his own path to dive into the agriculture community. The helping hands of family and friends allowed Don to stand on his own feet and start his journey. The best advice Don got at the start of his career was “Surround yourself with good people and work with them.” The Acker family returned to the Ellsworth area in 1987- the start of their journey.

Farming is both a lifestyle and a business. It takes dedication every day and attention to detail. When asked what the best advice for a beginner farmer, Don replied, “You can’t give up your dream, pay close attention to the numbers, and treat people with respect.” Every farmer has an abundance of dedication and inner drive which can be learned by others and applied to their own aspirations. For Don, this dedication to farming created a family affair. This partnership between Don and his two sons, Jay and Cal, is the most rewarding part of his career. He spoke endlessly about how much gratitude he has for the industry for allowing him to work with his sons and watch his grandkids grow, “It doesn’t get any better than being a grandpa!”.

Farming is a way of life for Don, which is no surprise. When we had asked Don, “If you weren’t in farming what would you do?” with a long pause, he responded, “I would work for a seed company.” Safe to say he has and will always be passionate about farming along with building relationships within the community. What’s next? Ackers plans to implement their succession planning to keep their family business moving forward. He wants his community to know that farmers do everything they can to produce quality products.

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