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My wife Kylie and I live with our 2 daughters on my family’s farm southeast of Fairfax. I am the 5th generation to operate Rieke Farms, established in 1872, 150 years ago this year. I took a non-traditional route into farming by first receiving my bachelor's degree in Psychology and Sociology from Hamline University in St Paul. My wife Kylie chose a more direct path into her career by receiving a degree in art from Augsburg University in Minneapolis and recently opened her pottery business on the farm called Raydiant Clay Works.
Prior to farming, Kylie and I served in the Peace Corps El Salvador from 2008 to 2010. It was in El Salvador that we realized we enjoyed living in rural communities and after our 2 year commitment we decided to move back home to join the farm. Many of you may know me as the RS Fiber guy because since 2010 I have been volunteering for the RS Fiber project, initially helping the cities promote the effort. Later I joined the cooperative board and I currently serve as the chairman. In 2018 I was accepted into a 2 year leadership training program called MARL (MN Agricultural Rural Leadership) where I attended numerous seminars around the state as well as a 1 week Seminar in Washington DC and a 2 week seminar overseas in Cambodia and Taiwan.
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