Joe Frueh: POWERING Agricultural Growth
By day, Joe Frueh works as a regional Farm Loan Officer at FCS Financial. All day, every day, he is serving his community in newly designated #Agri-Ready Nodaway County as a local row crop farmer and agriculture advocate. Joe travels beyond his farm’s fences to serve with local organizations, develop his leadership potential and build agricultural connections. Joe brings his experiences and knowledge home to Nodaway County where they become investments in his community which POWER Agricultural Growth.
Joe is a fourth-generation farmer, squared. He is the fourth generation on the maternal and paternal side of his family to farm in Nodaway County. Joe grows corn and soybeans with his parents, Randy and Judy Frueh. During the months between planting and harvest, Joe and his dad operate a trenching business. They install drainage tile and do many other soil shaping projects that promote soil and water conservation and sustainability. Previously, Joe worked as an agriculture student recruiter at his alma mater, Northwest Missouri State University, after earning his bachelor’s and master’s in agriculture education there. He made a change to become an FCS Financial loan officer because he knew it would expand his capacity to further serve and develop the agriculture industry in his greater community while still utilizing his love of working with people.
Joe is committed to being involved in the civic and social groups in his community. He is a Loyal Knight of the Maryville Elks Lodge 760, a member of the Nodaway County Livestock committee and a board member of the Nodaway County Big Brothers Big Sisters program. He also collaborates with the MO Beef Program in efforts to get locally grown beef onto school lunch trays in Nodaway County.
“I am involved in my community to promote agriculture and be a role model for those who need someone to look up to. I hope to encourage others to get involved in our community and make a positive impact,” Joe says. “My community involvement gives those that are unaware of agriculture the opportunity to ask me questions about it. I tell the story of agriculture so that misinformation has less impact in my community.”
Joe doesn’t just leave his farm; he often leaves his region to gain more understanding and develop a deeper agriculture network. As a member of the ALOT (Agricultural Leadership of Tomorrow) Class 18, Joe traveled across Missouri to witness the diversity of agriculture, share agriculture with metropolitan neighbors, build connections and more. The class culminated with an educational tour to New Zealand. This year, Joe is a member of Missouri Farm Bureau’s IMPACT Advanced Leadership class. The class takes a deep dive into the sectors, pathways and challenges of our food supply chain. As an IMPACT member, Joe has had discussions and asked questions on every level about food inputs while also building his agriculture industry connections.
Joe embodies a growth mindset. While he enjoys growing personally as a leader through programs such as ALOT and IMPACT, he plans to use everything he learns to help current farmers, young farmers and future farmers in Nodaway County to amplify, diversify and add to the county’s agricultural value. Through his job at FCS Financial, Joe is positioned to help northwest Missouri farmers and ranchers with financing for their operations. He is excited that he can also connect the agriculture cooperative’s member-owners with tools, resources and contacts that will help them succeed. Joe hopes to serve Missouri agriculture at the state level in the future.
Joe is the current president of the Nodaway County Farm Bureau Board. He has been serving on the board since 2015 where he has played a hands-on role advocating for Agri-Ready County Designation. Joe and other Agri-Ready supporters did not just demand that the conversation be brought to the table, they shared information and created positive changes over time in their local community that would allow the Agri-Ready conversation to come to the table.
“Agri-Ready Designation will allow the community and agriculture to move forward and grow,” Joe said.
Joe is also a member of Missouri Corn, Missouri Soybeans, and the Nodaway County Cattlemen’s Association, an affiliate of Missouri Cattlemen’s Association. These organizations as well as FCS Financial and Missouri Farm Bureau are all partners of Missouri Farmers Care.