His heart is in his cows and community
Ilion, New York
East White Heart Award Winner
Bringing the human element into things
Creating personal relationships
Steve Entwistle has always been thought of by his community as a “giver.” He is the type of person that whenever someone passes away, he is one of the first to bring the family a meat platter and rolls and just check in, shares his fiancé, Betty Holman.
“If it was a farm family, he would make sure that they had enough help on the farm and if financially they were okay. He has just always been one to do that,” says Betty.
Betty has known Steve and his family for more than 50 years and was the one to nominate Steve for the White Heart Award. Both their parents have been lifelong friends and growing up she and her siblings would spend summers on the Entwistle farm, back when they were milking just 60 cows. Now, they milk around 1,500 cows and raise an additional 2,000 youngstock. While a lot has changed on the farm, one thing has been constant and that is the Entwistle family.
When Brad Saunders, a Cargill Sales Manager who has known Steve and the family for over 35 years, presented the award the whole Entwistle family was present to celebrate.
“There are four brothers on the farm, and they have four sisters. They were all there along with Steve’s 91-year-old mother,” explains Brad. “You know, it's a family thing and to say it simple, they are a super family farm that's been here for generations growing their business and community.”
The small rural community in Central New York isn’t surprised to hear that Steve won an award that recognizes a person who shows support and kindness to others through difficult times. Brad illustrates how Steve is admired by others as a good neighbor and a good person who has volunteered his time and self to others through serving on his local FSA Board and Cooperative Extension Board.
“It all came from my father and mother who instilled in their 10 children that the most important thing is to try to be good people every day,” says Steve.
He appreciates that Cargill is trying to spread what he calls “human affect” during these difficult times, especially in an industry that seems to take more than it gives at times.
“This is all we are, we are fellow human beings. Dairy farming is a business just like anything else, but the bottom line is we're all human, which is why I always try to bring the human element into things and try to create a personal relationship with people.”
He explains that he recently did this with his family doctor, a young gentlemen with a wife and three young kids. Steve hosted them a few weeks ago for what he calls a grand farm tour and to enlighten them on what farming is like today.
“We went up to the calving barn and the family was able to see a calf being born. We didn't have to wait long and that was just such a thrill to be able to bring that to other people and let them experience it.”
When your heart is in the right place, it shines through every interaction you have and leaves a lasting impression.