This month we are pleased to feature Katy Sweeney of Iowa. Katy joined the DCI Team in 2018. Katy is a mom, a farmer, a recent High Honors college graduate, and is very passionate about advocating for and assiting growers to maximize the performance of their operations. Be sure not to miss the best piece of advice she has ever received - it is a touching memory and showcases the true spirit of so many in the agriculture industry.
How did you get involved with DCI?
I had previously been working with a single dealership in my area, inboxing their new precision agriculture platform customers. I was contacted by Sarah Burtch, offering me a contractor position with DCI.
Tell us about your background:
I have been farming for almost 25 years with my husband. I graduated college with my Associates Degree in 1993. I taught preschool for Head Start and then opened my own daycare, which I ran for 12 years. I then worked on the line for John Deere for 5 years. I then returned to college and graduated with my Bachelor's degree in 2017.
What is the best thing about being a DCI Contractor?
I love working for DCI because of the ability to work independently. I like to be able to prioritize my day according to what needs to be accomplished over the week. I love interacting with a variety of people and I always hope to leave a positive impact on everyone I come in contact with.
What would you like to share about your home and family life?
My husband James and I have been married for 24 years. We have 3 sons and a daughter. Luke is at Iowa State for Ag Engineering. Joel is at University of Dubuque for Sports Marketing and Management. Eric is a Junior and Anna is a Sophomore in high school. We farm, raising corn, beans, cattle, and hogs near Jesup, Iowa.
When I am performing contract work, this is my driving force:
When performing contract work, I am driven to make sure that every customer is getting the most out of what they have purchased. I want them to be satisfied that they have a good understanding of everything the client that I represent has to offer.
What was your first job?
My first job in high school was detassling corn.
What are your hobbies and interests?
I love spending time with my family, which may include watching the younger ones play sports or showing livestock at the fair. We also enjoy kayaking and camping.
What is your greatest achievement?
Graduating with my degree while I had children in college, high school, and middle school.
What are you ordering for your favorite meal?
What is the happiest memory of your life?
The happiest memory of my life is with my husband and children, we rented a RV and drove to Yellowstone National Park. It was a fantastic trip and it is my favorite place.
What three people (living or not) would you invite to a dinner party?
Presidents Teddy and Franklin Roosevelt along with Oprah (she would have amazing questions for them!)
What historical figure do you admire most?
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
I love my Diet Pepsi too much.
Tell us something about yourself that most people do not know:
Most people do not know that I graduated with my Bachelor's Degree last year, with high honors.
Where in the world are you dying to visit?
Alaska, and every National Park
What is the best piece of advice you ever received?
"A farmers life is hard enough, I just want to make it a little easier" -Fred Meier, my grandfather.
My grandpa invented a drive-through electric fence. He drove around Iowa selling it to farmers after he retired from farming. At the age of 94, he won the Inventors Contest and won a trip to Florida for the National Inventor's Convention. A person who was interested in purchasing my grandpa's invention asked my grandpa how much he sold it for. Grandpa responded with saddness, "$34". He explained that he had to raise the price because of the price of gas. The investor said that he could not make a profit on that! Grandpa explained that "A farmers life is hard enough, I just want to make it a little easier, and I just need enough money to cover my expenses."
Is there anything else that you would like to share?
I love this job. I love interacting with a variety of farmers and dealers. I like having the ability to improve their understanding of precision agriculture technology.