If you've attended Purdue University in the past 50 years, or if you have a son, daughter, or grandson or granddaughter who have attended there, or if you have attended an Extension meeting where Bob Taylor talked, or if you read Young Farmers Forum in Indiana Prairie Farmer, then Bob Taylor is not a stranger to you. What you may not know is that he's completing 50 years at Purdue, teaching students in ag economics and farm management during that entire time.
His specialty away from campus is helping farm families cope, and develop relationships so they can work together well in case that's not already happening. Along with Ron Hanson of the University of Nebraska, Taylor is recognized as an expert in advising farm families who are struggling to get along, or struggling to transition to the next generation with a new son-in-law or daughter-in-law and make things flow as smoothly as they did before- if they ever did!
On campus, he's known as the quintessential teacher who has taught the same subjects for 50 years. He uses many of the same methods, although the content has changed his attitude toward the classes and success rate have not.
"I tell stories from my own experience, sometimes I mess up and sometimes I get lucky, but the students seem to relate to these stories," Taylor told Christy Penner, a Purdue Ag Communications senior student during an interview for the story. Penner was instrumental in putting together the piece on Taylor as part of her capstone class in Purdue Ag Communications.
You won't just find fluff when the next issue arrives in your mailbox, and then appears later her on the Web under 'magazines on line.' Instead, Penners' inside story is packed full of advice from Taylor on how to handle various situations which can arise on the farm in farm family businesses. She even interviewed current students to get comments on why they thought it was easy to learn from Dr. Taylor. They were also asked for any advice they had picked up form him in the class.
Answers one enterprising student, "Sure, I remember his advice- if I want to farm, marry a rich farm girl!"
Look for the magazine due out the last week of January to find both cover and inside coverage of Purdue's own Bob Taylor.