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Foundation in farming: Dickinson Chamber honors agricultural support

Agriculture has always been the foundation of commerce in the Dickinson area, and that foundation remains firm as the Dickinson Chamber of Commerce announces their picks for Ag Business and Ag Family of the year for 2017.

Agriculture has always been the foundation of commerce in the Dickinson area, and that foundation remains firm as the Dickinson Chamber of Commerce announces their picks for Ag Business and Ag Family of the year for 2017.

This year's nominees for the Ag Business of the Year included Dakota Community Bank, American Bank Center and Charbonneau Car Center in Dickinson, but the winner was Sax Motors, a company that has called the area home for nearly a century.

"I think we were very thrilled with the award. That's our foundation, our business foundation for many many years has been ag community," Christian Kostelecky, general manager of Sax Motors, said in a phone interview. "We consider them our best customers."

Having so many years put into a place can result in a lot of loyalty, and it was Sax's commitment to the Dickinson agricultural community that gave them this win, in Kostelecky's mind.

"We have a lot of long-term ranchers in the area who have utilized us for sales and service for many many years," he said. "The foundation of this area is agriculture."

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Chery Viola, executive director of the Dickinson Chamber of Commerce, affirmed that the company's history in the area was a big element of the decision.

"1923 was when Sax opened its doors," she said. "They provided transportation to farmers and ranchers ... they keep getting the job done. They've been supporters and leaders in many community events."

Those events include supporting local 4-H and rodeo events. Mike Renner, a member of the Chamber's agricultural committee, spoke to the importance of having a reliable local business dealing in something as essential as farm vehicles.

"What gave Sax Motors the edge was service and commitment in the area," Renner said. "They worked with Chevy Trucks and farm and ranch families for many years, and farm and ranch families buy cars."

Sax was honored at the Chamber's annual awards banquet. Additionally the Chamber named Amanda and Shane Talkington as the Ag Family of the Year.

"They're a younger producer and sometimes in agriculture, like any business, it's tough to get a start," Renner said about the Talkingtons. "They've made the commitment and are committed to being purebred producers and working with agriculture and this industry and have done well."

The Talkingtons have already earned some accolades in the beef world-Shane was awarded the first ever Beef Booster Award from Select Sires, a beef genetics producer, in 2013.

"My ag committee has a very, very good pulse on local farmers and ranchers," Viola said. "So they go through and they nominate the different farmers they feel qualify for this award and it's the same thing, people who have innovated in the agricultural area."

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The purpose of these awards is to help bring attention and publicity to the otherwise unsung persons and businesses who help keep the agricultural world humming along, Renner said.

"The importance of the awards is we're just trying to give recognition to the people working in the industry that the general public might not know about," he said.

Related Topics: AGRICULTURE
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