December 20, 2014

Director of Ag Honors Poultry Producer during 45th Governor's Conference on Agriculture

Don Steen Awarded Poultry Legacy Award

(JEFFERSON CITY, Mo.) – Missouri poultry producer Don Steen, from Eldon, Mo., was recognized by Director of Agriculture Richard Fordyce Saturday evening at the 45th Missouri Governor’s Conference on Agriculture with the 2014 Missouri Poultry Legacy Award, recognizing him for leadership in Missouri’s poultry industry. During the awards banquet, Missouri’s Director of Agriculture Richard Fordyce recognized Steen with this year’s top poultry honors in front of hundreds in attendance.

“Don, like many other Missouri producers, has given his entire life to agriculture,” said Director Fordyce, “We truly have exceptional people representing our industry. Recognizing Don is a great honor; we are incredibly grateful for everything he has done to move agriculture forward.”

Inspired by his full-time farmer parents, Steen and his wife, Alisa, moved back to Miller County after graduating from college to begin his turkey operation in conjunction with his father. After a few years, Steen saw the need to grow the operation. He built new barns just a mile from their original barn and began raising contract turkeys, most recently with Cargill. The Steen farm houses around 45,000 birds each year. For the past 40 years, Don and Alisa have continued to raise turkeys on the same farm and in the same barns, with continuous modern poultry practice updates. The Steen’s farm is one of the longest running family turkey operations in Miller County. Besides his commitment to the farm, Steen has served in the Missouri House of Representatives, as Miller County Assessor, as Director of the Missouri Department of Agriculture, as lobbyist for the Missouri Farm Bureau Federation and countless other agriculture organizations.

Missouri’s Poultry Legacy Award was recognized alongside Legacy Awards in Soybean, Cattle, Corn, Pork, Forestry, Dairy, Rice and Cotton, the Missouri Farm Innovation Award, the Missouri Agriculture Environmental Steward Award, Missouri Ag Education Leader Award and the Missouri Food Animal Veterinarian Award at the 2014 Missouri’ Governor’s Conference on Agriculture closing banquet.

The conference, which took place at the Lake of the Ozarks, concluded Saturday evening with a special performance by country music band Sawyer Brown. The three-day event included nationally-recognized speakers, in-depth discussions about current issues and an agriculture tradeshow. Special events during the conference included the Taste of AgriMissouri reception and the Friday evening benefit auction supporting programs for youth and young professionals in agriculture.

For more information on the Governor’s Conference on Agriculture and the Missouri Department of Agriculture, visit the Department online at


Note: Photos of the award presentation are available by contacting Sarah Alsager at or (573) 751-2613.