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Finding Purpose in the Challenges of Farming

After beginning his career in engineering, Devin Leas discovered his true dream was to become a full-time farmer.

// Cooperative Stories, Customer Stories

For Devin Leas, there’s nothing like life on the farm. The sound of a combine harvesting a few miles down the road, the smell of the dust in the air, the feeling of standing on solid ground out in the field—each of the senses reminds him how rewarding it is to be a farmer.

So when Devin moved to college to pursue his engineering degree and play football, he carved out time each fall to return home and ride in the combine. After graduating, he began a career in electrical engineering and eventually moved to Florida for a job opportunity. Still, he found himself missing his family, his friends and farming in rural Indiana. 

And that’s why, two and a half years after leaving home, Devin decided to move back and follow his dream of starting his own farm. He began with 13 acres, rented from his grandfather, and quickly fell in love with the business of farming. Even the challenges, from crunching numbers to forecasting weather, were reminders he was on the right path. He knew his next step was to expand the operation.

“Getting started in agriculture can be difficult,” said Devin. “Having some kind of support is crucial.”

That support came in the form of a loan from Farm Credit Mid-America, which enabled him to purchase additional land. As an engineer, he also valued having a partner who could bring the analytical thinking and well-rounded expertise he was looking for.

“Farm Credit Mid-America gave me my first opportunity to expand my farm beyond the 13 acres I started with, and they’ve been in my corner ever since,” Devin shared. “Their experienced team members provide the guidance I need to make informed decisions, which is important for a beginning farmer.”

Watch the video below to hear Devin’s journey as a first-time producer.

Farm Credit Mid-America territory includes Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio and Tennessee. Arkansas includes Clay, Craighead, Crittenden, Cross, Desha (northeast of the White River), Greene, Lee, Mississippi, Phillips, Poinsett, and St. Francis counties. Missouri includes Carter, Ripley and Wayne counties. Kentucky excludes Ballard, Calloway, Carlisle, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Marshall and McCracken counties. Ohio excludes Crawford, Hancock, Lucas, Marion, Ottawa, Sandusky, Seneca, Wood and Wyandot counties. We serve all counties in Indiana and Tennessee. 

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