2020 Leadership in Community Award I Duane Senger
Duane graduated from Fosston High School in 1965 and the U of M in 1969. Duane began his career working for the MN Department of Agriculture. He and his family moved to Olivia in 1973 where Duane started with Pfizer Genetics. In 1979 Duane began public accounting. Duane has been involved with Corn Capital Days as its treasurer since 1978 and was instrumental in bringing a German band to the celebration several times. Duane has been involved in the community in many ways church, youth soccer and baseball, Jaycees, Kiwanis, Band Boosters, United Appeal and the Chamber of Commerce, just to name a few. The Olivia Chamber of Commerce thanks Duane for his many years of leadership in our community.
2020 Lifetime Achievement Award I Bob Thurston
The Olivia Chamber of Commerce’s 2020 Lifetime Achievement award is presented to Bob Thurston for all that he has done for Olivia. Bob grew up on a small family farm near Brewster, MN. After graduating from Ridgewater he began his career at Trojan Seed company in Olivia in 1970. Bob also worked for RBA before starting what has become the largest seed brokerage firm the U.S., Thurston Inc. in 1980. Bob also founded Thurston Genetics, a corn genetics licensing company in 1993. Bob has served on numerous boards nationwide throughout his career. Locally some of those include: Past Chairman of the Ridgewater College Foundation, Past Chair of Southwest MN Initiative Foundation, Past President of St. Aloysius Catholic Church Council and the Olivia Golf Club, Corn Capital Trust, American State Bank, and many more. The Olivia Chamber of Commerce honors Bob Thurston.
2020 Business of the Year I AgCountry Farm Credit Services
AgCountry specializes in loans, taxes and record-keeping for farmers and agribusiness. Four years ago, AgCountry built a new building in Olivia. AgCountry has had a team participate in Relay for Life and Walk In The Park for many years. United Acres community garden is the brainchild of AgCountry who owns the land for the garden. AgCountry staff has served often on the Chamber board. With a staff of 14 in Olivia, AgCountry supports many groups and organizations with staff members involved in their communities through church, Lions, Kiwanis and more. The Olivia Chamber or Commerce salutes AgCountry Farm Credit Services of Olivia as the 2020 Business of The Year.