A gift of more than $3 million will provide the University of Nebraska with potential to take wheat breeding and cropping systems research to a new level of innovation not seen since the early days of plant genetics.
Marvin H. Stumpf III of Grant, Neb., has made the gift to the University of Nebraska Foundation to establish the Stumpf Family Research and Development Fund to support agricultural research and university extension services.
The contribution includes a $1 million outright gift and donation of 640 acres of land in Perkins County, located in southwest Nebraska, with an appraised market value of more than $2 million.
“This gift is about honoring my family and our Nebraska heritage,” Marvin Stumpf said. “This state has meant so much to generations of my family, and it’s a privilege to give back in a way that will further agricultural research and service well into the future.”
Ronnie Green, University of Nebraska vice president and Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources Harlan Vice Chancellor, said Marvin Stumpf’s rich and active legacy will live on through these gifts, providing researchers, faculty and students the opportunity to make new discoveries on his land.
“We are excited about the additional opportunities this donation creates for the wheat industry in Nebraska and even more excited about the future impact our partnership will have on our state, region and world, since as much as 50 percent of Nebraska’s wheat is annually exported to international markets,” Green said. “The wheat industry is big business in Nebraska, with between 65 and 75 million bushels grown each year.”
Archie Clutter, dean of the Agricultural Research Division at UNL, said: “UNL’s robust wheat and cropping-systems research programs will grow even stronger with the help of this generous gift from the Stumpf family. This Perkins County location will add important representation of high-plains, semi-arid production to the UNL system of integrated research and allow accelerated progress in the development and application of new plant science biotechnologies.”
A Nebraska native, Marvin Stumpf worked for the U.S. Postal Service in Denver and received a degree from Metropolitan State University in Denver. He returned to Nebraska to help his parents, Henry J. and Darlene Stumpf, with the family farm. The family built the farm into a successful enterprise in Perkins County, where Stumpf continues to live and work. The family’s use of dryland cropping techniques, combined with organic farming experience, are the tangible results of their willingness to experiment with new ideas while using the land to its fullest potential.
In making this gift to the university, Marvin Stumpf said he wished to honor the legacy of his family, including his late wife, Pearl Stumpf; his grandparents, Henry J. and Margaret Stumpf; his parents Henry J. and Darlene Stumpf; and his wife’s late husband, Sam Peterson.
“The Stumpf family devoted their lives to acquiring and improving their land through the use of good farm management practices,” Green said. “Their desire to honor the hard work and sacrifices of their family members by using the property for the benefit of the citizens of Nebraska and United States is commendable.” ❖