Lifelong St. Joseph resident and businessman Bob Wollenman was inducted into the Ag Hall of Fame at the St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce’s Farm City Breakfast today.
The Farm City Breakfast, which is in its 17th year, recognizes the farmer/producer and the importance of agribusiness to the area economy. Members of the farming and other agribusiness fields come together each year for the event.
The Farm City Breakfast is a fundraiser for Agriculture Future of America (AFA) Scholarships for area students pursuing agricultural-related degrees. This year $20,000 was raised and given to 13 award winners. This St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce event is the longest running and largest fundraiser for AFA scholarships.
Scott Stump, FFA Executive Officer was the keynote speaker. He discussed the importance of agriculture and the FFA. The FFA will gather in person this year for its conference.
“It’s important to gather because our industry is changing,” he said.
He said the ag industry is 7 million employees short and that the number of mouths to feed worldwide is rising and it’s the ag industry’s job to feed them.
Wollenman was inducted into the Ag Hall of Fame. His work history includes Bob Wollenman Inc. from 1967 to 1997 and then Deluxe Truck Stop from 1997 to present day. He is the owner and general manager. Deluxe Truck Stop, located at 4500 Packers Ave. in the South Side Industrial District, is in the heart of agribusiness in St. Joseph. As the industry has grown in the South Side, so has Deluxe Truck Stop to better serve the other businesses including adding multiple washing bay facilities, a tire shop and added the ability to perform Kosher and food grade tank washing.
Wollenman is a current board member of the South St. Joseph Industrial Sewer District and the National Association of Truck Stop Operators, of which he was the national chairman in 2019. He’s also been a board member for Progressive Community Services, the Kansas City Automobile Museum, the MWSU Foundation, the MWSU Board of Governors and LifeLine Foods. He’s a graduate of Central High School and MWSU. He’s been married to his wife Connie for 50 years. They have three children and seven grandchildren.
The event was held at Word of Life Church and was presented by LifeLine Foods. Patt Lilly, President and CEO of the St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce, was recognized for his support of the agribusiness community.