An Iowan wins AFBF Rural Entrepreneur of the Year

FarmlandFinder from Ames, Iowa has been named the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Rural Entrepreneur of the Year.  Team lead Steven Brockshus won the Ag Innovation Challenge by beating three other teams from across the nation. AFBF, in partnership with Farm Credit, announcing the winner at AFBF’s 100th Annual Convention.

FarmlandFinder, which aims to make the world’s farmland-availability information accessible, took home an additional $15,000 for a total of $30,000 in prize money as Farm Bureau Rural Entrepreneur of the Year.


Steven Brockshus of FarmlandFinder accepts the Rural Entrepreneur of the Year Award from AFBF Vice President Scott VanderWal.  Credit: AFBF   

Glean LLC of North Carolina won the People’s Choice Award (chosen by public vote) in the competition and an additional $10,000 in prize money, for a total of $25,000. Glean LLC produces healthy and fresh foods made from fruits and vegetables. Laura Hearn and Will Kornegay are team leads for Glean LLC.

AgHelp Corp. of Michigan, led by Feliciano Paredes, and Elite OviGen Inc. of Florida, led by Anette Skoog, were the other two finalists who competed in the final round of the challenge in New Orleans.

The final four teams competed for the award by pitching their business ideas to a panel of judges before a live audience on Jan. 13. They each received $15,000 in December and advanced in the competition.


Will Kornegay and Laura Hearn of Glean LLC accept the People’s Choice Award from AFBF Vice President Scott VanderWal.  Credit: AFBF   

“We’re proud to recognize these outstanding rural businesses and entrepreneurs,” said AFBF President Zippy Duvall. “The faith, courage and creativity these entrepreneurs have shown in starting their rural businesses is commendable.”

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