Richard Jensen, Precision Ag Specialist
Growing up on a farm, Richard was interested in agricultural technology from an early age, and also loved dealing with data and working with machinery monitors. Like many of the Precision Ag team members, Richard has seen agricultural technology evolve over the years and says, “I remember when we first got autosteering and thought that was pretty cool. We got to sit in the field and just watch it go!”
Realizing how much he enjoyed working on technology and equipment, he headed to Lake Area Technical Institute, Watertown, to pursue a degree in Precision Agriculture. Since joining the team at the Innovation Center, his enthusiasm for ag tech has grown into a full-blown passion.
Richard first learned of the Innovation Center when the team gave a presentation of its programs and opportunities at Richard’s school. Richard explains, “I love my home farm, but being away I’ve learned even more. The Innovation Center really intrigued me. I was impressed with their shop and team. I was really happy when they called back and offered me an internship.”
Once he graduated, Richard was offered a full-time position on the Precision Ag team, demonstrating that he fit in well and had the right attitude for the role. Richard doesn’t give up on any project until it’s perfect – and that’s just the attitude that characterizes the Precision Ag team at the Innovation Center.
Tackling one challenge in particular really gave Richard the confidence to take on any task as one of our precision ag specialists. A Case IH sprayer that belonged to the co-op came into the Innovation Center needing an upgrade. Not only was this an opportunity for Richard to update the system, but he wanted to prove the machine could produce more efficient results, along with putting less fatigue on the operator.
Richard first updated all the monitors inside the cab, along with adding a Reichhardt Tactile Row Guidance steering system. At the time, that was the newest technology available, so the Innovation Center team hadn’t become familiar yet with working on that system. There also wasn’t a lot of support available for the upgrade, so Richard had to learn as much as possible about the system to apply it and show the operator how to use it.
Richard explains why he chose this system: “It’ll actually auto-steer you down the corn rows, so it helps the operator by providing less fatigue. But more importantly, it will give you better and more efficient yields.”
Once he got the sprayer up and running, the operator was ecstatic with the results. Richard explains, “He was able to be more productive because he wasn’t running over the customer’s corn. It really made the job easier and less stressful for him. Every time I see him now he says, ‘You’re the guy that made that sprayer work for me; it’s so fun to run!’”
After upgrading the sprayer, Richard’s self-assurance grew, becoming certain he could master any task handed to him – and achieving that for his customers time and again.
Richard says, “It was pretty cool once I got the sprayer all working. It really boosted my confidence in being able to do different jobs. Before the sprayer, I wouldn’t always tackle a job because I didn’t know if I could make it work. After upgrading the sprayer, it changed the way I looked at challenges as something I could figure out and overcome.”
Richard also knows he has a stellar team of skilled colleagues who have his back. Whether he needs ideas on how to upgrade a piece of equipment to run better or if he needs support with getting machinery back up and running, he can count on the experienced team at the Innovation Center.
Call us today to learn more about how we can keep your operation running strong.