In August, John Klingenberg was honored with Yuma County Farm Bureau’s Heritage Award. This September, along with three other Heritage Award winners, the Board of Directors of the Arizona Farm Bureau selected Klingenberg as a statewide Heritage Award winner.

As with so many, Klingenberg’s life reflects years of hard work, small beginnings, volunteerism and most of all a love for family and farming. 

Arizona Farm Bureau’s ongoing series of farm and ranch families.

An overview of John Klingenberg’s life.

Their Farm Family Story

Klingenberg’s family and career beginnings: John Klingenberg was raised in Tucson and Green Valley. He married his wife, Mary Jean, in 1959 and got his degree in animal science from the University of Arizona in 1960.

They moved to the Wellton-Mohawk valley in 1960, and he started working at Snyder Ranch when it had 2,800 acres of production and a 12,000-head feedlot. He worked for the Snyder family for seven years and then went to work for Valley Seed, which had about 900 acres of Bermuda grass production at the time.

His own farming: Klingenberg bought his first field of 40 acres in 1965 and continued to work for Valley Seed for 14 years. He built his house and bought his next property in 1976. He farmed from 1983 to 2006.


The Klingenbergs

Volunteerism: He served on the Mohawk School board for 10 years, Natural Resource Conservation District for 38 years and Mohawk Valley Community Church as and elder for 55 years.

He served on the Wellton-Mohawk Irrigation District board for 30 years, serving three times as the board president. He was on the Arizona Cotton Improvement for 8 years, two years as president.

He was on the Mohawk Valley Gin board for 12 years, 4-H leader for 6 years, and Foundation of YRMC’s Tractor Rodeo Committee for 25 years. He was also a Boy and Cub Scout leader.

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