NORTH PLATTE, Neb. -- Bryan Dale Rentschler is a lifelong farmer and rancher.
The Atkinson man always wanted to farm, and the time spent as a student at Northeast Community College prepared him to be successful. When Rentschler was a senior in high school, he visited Northeast on a campus tour and his guide made a meaningful impression.
Rentschler was recently honored in North Platte at the annual Nebraska Community College Association conference. At the conference, Rentschler was chosen as the NCCA-Northeast Alumni Award winner.
After he enrolled at Northeast, Rentschler discovered that his tour guide was the dean of agriculture at the college.
"I felt very lucky to have met Mr. Chuck Pohlman as one of the first people I came in contact with at Northeast,” Rentschler said. "From that impactful visit, I became a student which led to being an active alumnus of Northeast."
Rentschler earned his associate of applied science degree in ag with the farm and ranch option in 1995. He also learned the importance of risk taking when it makes sense. He purchased a neighboring farm and has been going strong ever since.
He also knows the importance of community, serving on everything from agricultural boards to church and community groups. He is quick to credit the grants and scholarship that benefited him while going to Northeast, and now has come full circle, serving on boards to give back.
As a student, Rentschler lived on the Norfolk campus. He walked to class each day looking forward to learning about his field of study along with other like-minded students who came from similar backgrounds. In the fall of his year of graduation from Northeast, he purchased a neighbor's farm and has been farming ever since.
"The Farm and Ranch Management Program at Northeast has prepared me for the challenges in production agriculture. My life has also been impacted by other students who have received their education from Northeast.”
In addition to running a diversified grain and livestock operation, Rentschler is a member of the Tri County Bank Board where he represents the ag community. He is the first vice president of the West Holt Memorial Hospital Board, and president of the Weller Foundation that awards scholarships to students from Holt and surrounding counties. Many of the scholarship recipients attend Northeast Community College.
Leah Barrett, Northeast president, said Rentschler isn’t afraid of hard work.
“Not everyone can be a farmer or rancher. You must work hard to produce a crop or raise livestock to put food on the table for the world. Bryan learned that at an early age from his family. Successful farmers get up with the sun and don’t quit working most days until it sets. There’s always another job that can be completed,” Barrett said.
In 2013, Rentschler was named to the Northeast Community College Alumni Hall of Success.
Rentscher’s family includes his wife, Amy, and son, Samuel, 6. The family are members of the St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Atkinson.
PHOTO ID: Bryan Dale Rentschler.