Moving from Aurora to Big Rock when she was 11 was life changing for Kelly. From city blocks and sidewalks where she rode her bike to rural subdivisions and farm fields where it seemed like it took forever to get to the nearest friend’s house or grocery store by car! She remembers thinking she was in “Hicktown USA.” Well, as time would later tell her, she is still here and it’s not a “Hicktown” by any means. Kelly has come to love the rural farm life and all that comes with it, thanks to her friend Kristi Himstedt for inviting the new girl over to their family’s pig farm on Jericho Road, to feed the pigs, hold the piglets and running and riding through the fields. That was her first “Farm” experience, albeit a stinky one! Once Kelly graduated from high school, she lived on the Judd cattle farm with a couple of girlfriends for a short stint and at one point she even decided it would be a good idea to sell Mycogen Seed. That was until she met Joe Ludwig, who was at the time a family friend she didn’t really know well, then life changed again! In 2004 Kelly joined Joe and Rooster Ag’ as Partner and Managing Broker and took on all of the other small business duties. Since Kelly’s start Rooster Ag’ has expanded into Farm Management, Federal Crop Insurance, Land Appraisals and recently added the Northern Illinois Ag’ Center to our portfolio. While Kelly still maintains her role as Managing Broker and Owner/Partner she has had a hand in developing all aspects of the other entities and lends a hand where needed. Kelly also handles the accounting, notarizing and other behind the scenes business aspects of Rooster Ag’ and the NIAC.
Kelly is also in the early stages of developing Illinois Women in Ag’. Whether a Woman is involved directly in the day to day farming operations in the field or in the farm office to the Women of the farm family, Women land owners, family estates and general ag’ conversation, Illinois Women in Ag’ will be a platform for information, converstation, meetings, speakers, luncheons, dinners and more. Email Kelly for more insight and see how one can get involved in Illinois Women in Agriculture!
Joe and Kelly have 4 kids – 2 his, 2 hers – but really, they are “theirs” as they have raised them together and in the business. They are all involved in one way or another in the Ag’ industry and in the business making it truly a “Family Owned” business. From the home basement office to the Big Rock Scale House to the new forever home in the Northern Illinois Ag’ Center, stop in and see Kelly to discuss how she can be of assistance to you and your family in all aspects of Ag’ and she will show you “how work gets done!”