Princeton Field Day
Next-Level Program



20270 1800 N AVE, PRINCETON, IL 61356




Matt Denton

Agronomist | | 815-878-1270

Matt grew up on his family’s grain farm near Princeton, IL. He attended Princeton High School, where he was active in track, football, baseball and theater. He was a 10 year 4-H club member. He attended the University of Iowa in Iowa City, IA. After graduation in 2012, Matt returned home to Princeton to join the family’s business operations. He was a Sales Associate for White Oak Ag, Inc., a Pioneer seed dealership his grandparents operated for 48 years, and rejoined the family’s fifth-generation farming operation. He is a member of the Elks Lodge in Princeton.

Matt currently resides in Princeton with his wife, Sarah, daughter, Ellie, and their Australian Shepherd, Nile. They enjoy attending baseball and football games, traveling and home improvement projects.


John Becker

Agronomist | | 815-343-3940

John was born and raised on his family farm near LaMoille, IL, and knew from the age of 6 he would be a farmer. He attended Illinois Valley Community College and has continued learning through various professional development and continuous education programs. He has been involved with the Bureau County Farm Bureau and the Illinois Soybean Association. John is a 2003 graduate of the Illinois Farm Bureau ALOT program. Professionally, John has more than 30 years experience in the farm and agribusiness world. He has held a commercial spray applicators license for 30 years and has more recently obtained a Real Estate Managing brokers license. As a Hefty team member, John brings practical agronomy knowledge and a sincere desire to help farmers grow.

John enjoys spending time with his grown children Lauren, Layne, and Paul. His other interests include a diverse garden and landscaping, riding his Harley Davidson and a growing collection of farm toys.


Kyle Bickett

Agronomist | | 815-866-2585

Kyle was born and raised on his family farm near Princeton, IL. He knew from an early age he had a passion for agriculture and livestock. After high school, Kyle attended Blackhawk College East Campus and graduated with an Associate Degree in Ag Business/Ag Production.

After graduating, Kyle continued his involvement with the family farm and also was employed at Northern Partners Coop as an operator. Kyle’s knowledge and leadership allowed him to ascend to the position of plant manager, a position he served in for five years before joining Hefty Seed Company as a sales agronomist and operator. Kyle continues to be directly involved with his father and brother in their grain and livestock operation.

Kyle is very active in the community. He is involved in the local volunteer fire department, Lions Club, and is a trustee on the Berlin Township Board of Supervisors. Kyle is a graduate of the Illinois Farm Bureau “Ag leaders of Tomorrow” program.

In his spare time, he enjoys camping and spending time on the farm with his wife, Dana, and three children; daughters, Riley and Brynleigh, and son, Levi.


Nate Ihnen

Agronomist | | 815-878-0766

Nate Ihnen grew up in east central South Dakota on the family farm 12 miles southwest of Tulare. He farmed with his dad and brother for 15 years, while operating a small trucking business. While farming with his family he worked within the local co-op’s agronomy division, specializing in fertilization, chemical application, and variable rates. Nate also spent 6 years as a field marketer for Titan Machinery both in Huron, SD as well as Aberdeen, SD. Nate truly enjoys the farming culture and enjoys working with growers.

Nate enjoys spending time with his two daughters Braelynn and Brooklynn and son Greyson. His other interests are building motorcycles, hunting, and playing the guitar.


Denny Denton

Agronomist | | 815-878-3377

Denny and his wife of 53 years, Dorothy, have lived and farmed near Princeton, IL their entire lives. They have raised corn, soybeans, wheat, cattle, and hogs.

Denny has been very active in serving agriculture both locally and nationally. He has served on the US Grains Council, US Meat Export Federation, and Illinois Corn Marketing Board. During his tenure on these committees, he enjoyed traveling abroad to promote US agriculture in Cuba, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, and South America. Locally, he has been a township trustee for 20 years, a 4-H leader, a local Farm Bureau member, a Loyal Order of Moose member. Currently, he and Dorothy are active members of the Elks Lodge. Denny and Dorothy operated a Pioneer Seed dealership from 1967 – 2015. They have three grown sons.

In his spare time, he enjoys Florida beaches, deer hunting, and fishing.


Andrea Cain

Administrative Assistant| | 815-879-8720

Andrea graduated from LaMoille High School and attended Illinois Valley Community College and Mid-West College of Cosmetology. Andrea has been around agriculture her whole life. She was an active 4-H member, enjoyed being a junior crew leader detasseling for 13 years and recently worked in a local elevator helping with harvest needs. She has also gained agriculture knowledge from her father, who served as general manager of a local coop for many years and recently retired as the energy manager.

Andrea loves being with family and friends. She resides in Princeton with her husband Anthony and two boys Tucker and Patrick. In her spare time, you may catch her in the salon cutting or coloring hair. She also enjoys baking, shopping and redoing/crafting new things for their home.


Rachel Denton

Location Manager| | 815-878-1275

Rachel grew up on her family’s grain farm near Princeton, IL. From a young age, she enjoyed helping with harvest as well as helping with her grandparents’ Pioneer seed business. After graduating from Princeton High School, she attended Illinois Valley Community College and worked for five years at Central Bank – Illinois before returning full-time to the family’s operations in 2012.

Rachel is very active in the community. She volunteers for Mobile Meals, delivering meals to the elderly; and Buddy Bags, an organization that helps feed needy school-aged children. She also helps the local Elks Lodge with their annual Christmas baskets for needy families.

Rachel resides in Princeton and enjoys spending time with family, attending church, flower gardening, and reading.


McKenzie Cain

Agronomist | | 815-879-8720

McKenzie is working as a sales agronomist. Born and raised in Bureau County, she takes pride in her hometown, Princeton where she graduated from Princeton High School as a midterm graduate in 2015.

McKenzie started with us as an intern in March of 2018 and was brought on officially in the following August. McKenzie is enrolled at Illinois Valley Community College working to graduate with two AAS degrees Agronomy and Agricultural Business Management.

In her free time, she enjoys photography as well as spending time with her significant other, friends, and family.


Mike Denton

Store Manager/Agronomist


Paul Becker






Matt Anzelc, CCA

Agronomist | | 815-824-6277

Matt was born and raised on his family farm near Newark, IL. From an early age, he had a passion for agriculture. After high school, Matt attended Joliet Junior College and then graduated from Illinois State University with a bachelor’s degree in Agronomy Management and Agribusiness.

His educational background, his passion for agronomy, and his first-hand experience running the family farm provide him the hands-on knowledge and skill set to help producers be more profitable. Matt’s been instrumental in testing and implementing innovative techniques on the family farm – these results enable him to guide producers to be more efficient in their own operations.

Matt is actively engaged in both the local and state level producer organizations, such as Kendall County Corn Growers Association, Kendall County Farm Bureau, Kendall County Young Leaders, Illinois Corn Growers Association, Illinois Soybean Association, and the Illinois Farm Bureau.

In his free time, he enjoys grilling, boating, and attending country concerts.



SIBLEY, IL 61773

hefty circle

Jake Steidinger

Agronomist | | 309-200-4812

Jake Steidinger grew up in Fairbury, IL. He attended Prairie Central High School, where he was active in FFA and the ICT work program, working for Zehr Acres. After high school he continued working for Zehr Acres and traveled with the IPRA, PRCA riding bulls. He also worked for Straghtline Ag as a tower technician, and assembled ammonia toolbars. Jake has spent the last 5 years with Stine Seed Company as an independent sales representative. During Jakes free time he is with his family or out hunting, fishing or working in his yard. Jake and his wife Britney currently reside in Colfax, IL with there two daughters Joelle and Jayla.


Tim Mueller




Eric McNeeley, Edelstein Agronomist

Eric McNeeley

Agronomist | | 309-369-5376

Eric McNeeley lives in Edelstein, IL with his wife of 13 years, Bridget, and their two kids Kalin(12) and Connor(10). He grew up in Princeville, IL and then went on to Illinois Central College and received his degree in Horticulture Science and Turf Maintenance. He spent several years working as an Assistant Superintendent at two local golf courses and then managed a Turf Irrigation company in the Peoria area. He had his first taste of Agriculture managing a local grain elevator and have since fallen in love with the Ag Industry and its people. Prior to having this great opportunity with Hefty, he was a Precision Ag Advisor for Jenner Ag.

When not working, I enjoy fishing, hunting, or just about anything outdoors. Most of Bridget and Eric’s free time is dedicated to attending and helping coach their kids’ sports activities. Eric’s daughter is active in volleyball and his son plays baseball, basketball, and football.

Princeton’s Third Annual Field Day




Building on the AgPhD’s Field Day in Baltic, South Dakota, which is one of the largest one-day ag events in the Midwest with over 10K people in attendance, we look to compliment them by bringing the same type of learning opportunities to our region. We will have exhibitors, plots, demos, and a great speaker line-up. Please plan to attend!

Register for Field Day
Princeton Field Day Site


Randy Dowdy has made a name for himself in the agriculture industry. In addition to winning high yield contests for corn and soybeans on his farm in Georgia, Randy is also passionate about paying it forward by sharing what he’s learned. This passion has led him to develop the Next Level Program.


Randy Dowdy is taking his farming knowledge on the road, pairing with David Hula in the Next-Level program. At farm camps across the Midwest and beyond, the pair of record-yield growers are conducting intense learning sessions with a minimum of 50 farmers per camp, meeting four times a year—two full days each time. The program centers on shared field data and exchange of information within the group. The program also grants access to a software application with the power to connect all growers within the Next-Level group and records all management decisions and field data in real-time.

The Next Level Program is truly unique in the industry. It represents your chance to learn directly from Randy, other growers, and your own fields.

Randy Dowdy Next Level