Kubota Tractor Corporation today announced that the latest recipient of a donated tractor in its “Geared To Give” program is farmer veteran Chad Tackett, owner of Tackett Family Farms in Lincolnton, Georgia. During a special ceremony, Tackett was presented with the keys to a new Kubota L-Series compact tractor in recognition of his years of service in the U.S. Army and for his dedication to farming. The donation was made by Kubota in partnership with the Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC), in an effort to provide financial support and donated Kubota equipment to U.S. military veterans pursuing a future in farming.
Tackett and his wife Shirlene, a U.S. Air Force veteran, manage roughly 200 acres of land including planted pines, hardwoods and pastures where they raise grass-fed Texas Longhorn cattle. Tackett grew up feeding cattle and raising hogs on family farms, and with his experience and new Kubota tractor, he plans to develop the farm and expand his cattle operation to sell meat locally by late next year. A father of four, Tackett’s son Zach serves in the U.S. Navy where he is stationed in King’s Bay, Georgia. Tackett served in the U.S. Army for 22 years where he was stationed across the U.S. and overseas before retiring in 2012.
When told by phone that he had been selected as this quarter’s “Geared to Give” recipient, Tackett was in complete disbelief, stating, “I am so glad to replace my broken-down 1970 tractor and I can’t wait see what my new Kubota can do on my farm and for the local farmer veteran community. I’ve never been so lucky and am incredibly grateful for this recognition.”
Kubota’s philanthropic mission is to “power and empower those who move the earth,” and in that spirit “Geared to Give” was born in partnership with FVC in early 2015. The program works to identify the needs and further the agriculture careers of those who have served their country and are now serving their communities through farming.
“This program empowers farmer veterans to achieve their dreams and make a true difference through their farming operations,” said Todd Stucke, Kubota senior vice president of sales, marketing and product support. “Kubota is proud to offer a token of our gratitude for those who have done so much for this country through their military service. We are extremely pleased to help Chad continue to make a difference in his community for many years to come.”
After retiring in 2012, Tackett learned all there is to know about grass-fed cattle with the hopes of starting his own operation. With his new Kubota tractor, Tackett will get his farm in the proper condition to raise more animals and plant vegetables to sell locally, in addition to selling grass-fed beef. He also offers his farm as a place for local veterans to work or relax, providing a therapeutic environment and allowing them to start their own farming projects.
Michael O'Gorman, executive director of FVC also attended the special ceremony. “Having known Chad for several years, I am so proud that we’ve awarded this quarter’s tractor donation to such a deserving candidate,” O’Gorman said. “We are pleased to be able to award this tractor to Chad today and we know that he will make great use of it on his farm while supporting his fellow veterans.”
“We have been proudly serving central Georgia for many years,” said Peyton McGill, manager of Palmer Equipment, Tackett’s authorized Kubota dealer located in Washington, Georgia. “We are honored to be a part of this meaningful donation to such a worthy recipient, and we look forward to supporting Chad’s continued dedication to farming in our community.”
In addition, a Kubota-orange canopy, which will help shield Tackett from the elements while operating his tractor, was donated by Firebird Products, a Kubota supplier for aftermarket accessories. “We are proud to support our veterans,” said Keith Robinson, owner of Firebird Products. “We are thankful for our partnership with Kubota, a company that enables us to support such a worthy cause.”
Based in Davis, Calif., FVC is cultivating a new generation of farmers and food leaders, and developing viable employment opportunities and meaningful careers for veterans through the collaboration of the farming and military communities. FVC believes that food production offers purpose and opportunity, as well as physical and psychological benefits for all veterans. FVC works with veterans from all military branches, their families, employers and mentors to support those returning to or beginning careers in food and farming.
Farmer veterans can apply to the FVC Fellowship Fund in order to be considered for donated Kubota equipment through the “Geared to Give” program. Kubota has selected its Standard L-Series compact tractors for this program, as their versatility and efficiency are ideal for meeting the varying needs of many small- and medium-sized farming operations. For more information about the “Geared to Give” program, visit www.kubotacares.com. To learn more about FVC, visit www.farmvetco.org.
About Kubota Tractor Corporation
Kubota Tractor Corporation, Torrance, Calif., is the U.S. marketer and distributor of Kubota-engineered and manufactured machinery and equipment, including a complete line of tractors of up to 170 Gross hp, performance-matched implements, compact and utility-class construction equipment, consumer lawn and garden equipment, hay tools and spreaders, commercial turf products and utility vehicles. Kubota launched “Geared to Give” in March 2015 in partnership with the Farmer Veteran Coalition to provide financial support and donated Kubota equipment to U.S. military veterans pursuing a future in farming. For more information, visit www.kubotacares.com or www.kubota.com.
About Farmer Veteran Coalition
The mission of Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC) is mobilizing veterans to feed America. FVC works to develop a new generation of farmers and food leaders, and expand viable employment and career opportunities through the collaboration of the farming and military communities. Through mentorship, peer support and career counseling, FVC supports veterans returning to or beginning careers in the food and farming industry. For more information, visit www.farmvetco.org.
About Palmer Equipment Company
Palmer Equipment Company is family-owned and operated, serving Washington, Georgia, and the surrounding area since 1988. An authorized Kubota dealer, Palmer Equipment takes pride in its support of the surrounding community, and its family-friendly focus on sales and service contributed to being awarded Kubota President’s Kaizen Award for Excellence two years in a row. For more information, call (706) 678-3200 or visit www.palmerequipmentco.com.
About Firebird Products LLC
Firebird Products LLC is a fiber reinforced product manufacturing facility. Located in the United States, it builds products that have a true American flavor. As an OEM supplier of Kubota Tractor Corporation for the E1123 and E1134 sunshades for the B, BX, Zero Turns, L, & M series utility tractors, product quality, unique design, and value define Firebird products. Other products include Road Side Relics, replica gas pumps, gum ball machines, ice coolers, and clocks, all based on early 20th century Americana. For more information, call (623) 934-9340 or visit www.firebirdfiberglass.com.