Bern Diekema, Manager of the Egg Division at the Hamilton (Michigan) Farm Bureau, received the “Person of the Year” award at the 2007 Urner Barry Executive Conference and Marketing Seminar. Diekema represents one of the oldest farmer owned cooperatives in the country.

Beginning over 85 years ago, the co-op provides feed, lumber, propane, auto sales and even a hardware store. Many of these services still remain today in Hamilton, Michigan, including the large egg processing and marketing facility. The co-op also markets eggs from the nearby 900,000-bird complex operated by Cal Schipper.


The co-op, in addition to the Egg Processing and Marketing Division, continues to provide feed and fertilizer to many of the surrounding farms. Eggs for the processing plant are provided by four farms in the Hamilton area. Diekema will be retiring after 35 years of service with the Hamilton Farm Bureau.