Change may not always be welcome or understood at first. But those who can find the value will benefit. All I can ask of you, a valued reader, is to keep an open mind toward change. To challenge yourself. To think different.

As the new editor of Corn & Soybean Digest, my passion is to lead a group of writers and thinkers who can deliver facts and food for thought to help you discover good change. And it starts by thinking different.

I didn't borrow the title of my column from Steve Jobs, although I'd highly recommend Walter Isaacson's great book on this visionary yet contradictory man. I was taught to think different by my dad, Bill Lawton, during my farm youth in central Iowa back in the 1960s and 70s on our 800-acre grain and livestock farm near Jefferson.

My 'aha moment' of enlightenment came when our family faced the possibility of farm failure in the 1980s, due to the unforeseen land value crash. This 'think different' philosophy helped save the family farm.

This moment changed my life forever. The fear, pain and tears, followed by successful change, taught me a greater lesson. A passion to pay it forward. A need in my soul to help farmers survive and thrive.

Since then, everything I've written has delivered benefits that can help farmers. You may have seen my work as editor of our sister publication Farm Industry News, or in more recent years in The Progressive Farmer and DTN.

Now that I've been entrusted to lead this magazine, website and mobile media, I will instill this passion into everything we do. The goal is to help you think different. To benefit you, your operation, your family, your community and your world.

We won’t always get it right. Life is a journey. But please join us in this conversation. Give praise. Throw darts. Ask questions. Contribute. By working together, we will all grow and succeed.

My first-grade teacher, Mrs. Pound, told my parents, “Your son is a dreamer.” And admittedly, as my parents would attest, I was also a bit of a rebel. Still am. Perhaps that’s why I smile when I see the famous 1997 Apple TV spot http://bit.ly/o3tedq showing black & white footage of 17 iconic personalities that includes this brilliant copy:

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. While some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”– ©Apple.

 

I sincerely thank you for reading and for being willing to Think Different. We will help you.

 

Kurt Lawton, editor

 

klawton@csdigest.com  952.851.4667