Farming skipped a generation in David Grimes’ family: Both sets of his grandparents farmed, but his father contracted polio as a teenager and couldn’t do the physical labor. Dad moved from Cheyenne County to Lincoln, worked for the former Production Credit Association and married David’s Mom.
David got his first hands-on experience in farming as a member of FFA at Lincoln Northeast High School, which had farm ground a few miles from the school during the early ’70s. He worked on his friends’ family farms north of Lincoln during the summer and eventually rented ground from his Dad, who’d bought some farmland as an investment, and other landlords. David farmed while going to UNL, where he majored in ag econ and graduated in 1980.
Today David has 1,500 acres of corn and soybeans north of Lincoln and youngest son Matthew, 17, has hay and a small cow herd. David’s wife Becky is a physician’s assistant. Oldest son Mark is a law student at UNL, recently married to Megan, and middle son Nathan has just graduated from high school and will study diversified agriculture at Southeast Community College in Beatrice. Their daughter, Elizabeth, is a UNL grad and teaches bilingual education for second graders in La Joya, Texas.
As a leader in Lancaster County Farm Bureau, David enjoys working on public policy issues and participating in events that connect farmers and consumers, such as Prairieland Dairy Days and the county fair.
He also works to help farmers in developing countries, through the Raymond United Methodist Church and Food Resource Bank, a Christian mission project. David and other volunteers are doing the field work on a small donated field, using seed and other inputs contributed by the local farmers cooperative and other businesses. They’ll sell the crop and send the proceeds to Food Resource Bank, to assist farmers in Colombia. David’s been involved in previous projects that helped farmers in Zambia and Ghana as well. He says, “I like helping people to feed themselves and have a little extra to sell and help their families.”