A diversified Rowena farmer and rancher took home honors as Texas Farm Bureau’s 2010 Outstanding Young Farmer and Rancher.

Paul Minzenmayer, 29, and wife, Monica, were selected over two other finalists at the 77thannual convention of the state’s largest farm organization in Waco. Runners-up were Justin and Barbi Dauer, who farm and ranch in Panhandle, and Michael and Leigh Welch, who farm and ranch near Troy.

The annual competition recognizes the accomplishments of some of Texas’ top young agricultural leaders and rewards them for all the hard work and determination needed to succeed in this ever-changing industry.

Rowena natives

The Minzenmayers grew up in Rowena. By high school, Paul was running his own farming operation. After college, he moved to Midland where he worked for an oil company to gain accreditation for his certified public accountant license.

When his time requirement was fulfilled, he returned to his hometown of Rowena and continued building his operation. What started out as a few dozen acres of cotton has grown more than tenfold, now including sizable tracts of wheat and grazing lands for his roughly 150-head cow/calf operation.

In 2008, he and a partner pooled their resources and opened Lone Star Grain Elevators near Roscoe, which he uses to store and market both his and other farmers’ crops.

“Treat people right, treat people the way you want to be treated,” Paul says. “It just seems like no matter if you’re doing custom work, if you’re going to go farm somebody’s land always do what you say you’re going to do.”

Paul also serves as the Runnels County Farm Bureau vice president.

The couple will represent the Lone Star State at the national level when they compete against producers from across the United States at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual meeting, planned in Atlanta, Ga., Jan. 9-12, 2011.

As winner of the statewide contest, Minzenmayer takes home the following: $5,000 in cash, courtesy of Farm Credit Bank of Texas; title to a 2011 Dodge Ram 3/4-ton 4x4 pickup with a Cummins turbo diesel engine, courtesy of Texas Farm Bureau Insurance Companies; 150 hours’ use of a Case IH tractor (winner selects from a 40 PTO horsepower up to 155 PTO horsepower tractor two-wheel drive or a MFD front-wheel drive assist or $2,000 credit on CNH “serialized” product), courtesy of Case IH; a $500 cash award from Dodge Trucks; and a plaque and belt buckle.

The runners-up each won a new pair of Justin Boots, compliments of Justin Brands, Inc.; a power tool valued at $200, courtesy of Grainger; and a plaque and belt buckle.