Three farmers took to the stage during Soybean Summit to talk about the challenges and opportunities on their operations.


Adam Braun produces corn and soybeans on a very diverse set of soils in Fayette County. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 2004. After graduation, he spent several years doing powertrain development work at a large equipment manufacturer in Peoria. At that time, he returned home on the weekends to help farm on a part time basis. He got the opportunity to farm full time in 2012, and since then has expanded upon the farm’s heritage of conservation farming by improving no-till management. He takes great pride in the design and implementation of farming systems that increase yields and improve the health of his soil. He and his wife Molly have three children.

Kate Huffman is a 6th generation farmer and farms their family farm in rural Galva growing corn and soybeans. Her family farm also has several pollinator plots dating back to 2009. Known as Pink Hat Farmer, Kate’s passion revolves around agriculture, sharing her rural life experiences and life as a female farmer. Kate currently works full-time as a Financial Officer at Compeer Financial in Geneseo helping farmers achieve their financial goals and plan for the future of their farms. She chairs the Henry County Farm Bureau Health & Safety Committee as well as serves as a director on the County Farm Bureau board where she works diligently with local driver’s education classes to teach young drivers about safe driving around farm machinery and working with younger students to teach them about the many different careers agriculture can offer.

Jay Riddell is a fourth-generation farmer in North Central Illinois. He is owner of Riddell Farms Inc and Riddell Cattle and Fence. Jay is a long-time high management strip-tiller who farms 2,500 acres. He is an Iowa State graduate, president of Midland School Board, husband, and father of two sons.


Stephanie Porter is Outreach Agronomist for the Illinois Soybean Association. She has over 20 years of experience in agronomy and plant pathology. Stephanie holds a Master’s degree from the University of Illinois and is a Certified Crop Adviser. In 2018, Stephanie was named the Illinois CCA Master Soybean Adviser.

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About the Author: Kelsey Litchfield

Kelsey Litchfield is the Agronomic Outreach Specialist for the Illinois Soybean Association. In her role, she manages ILSoyAdvisor media platforms and assists the agronomy team with events and field days. A native of Rio, IL, Kelsey earned her bachelor’s degree from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2017 where she double majored in Agricultural Communications and Broadcast Journalism.

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