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Hertz, Carl F.

Published onAug 06, 2021
Hertz, Carl F.

(July 1, 1912 – June 15, 2005)

Quick Facts

Alumnus Carl F. Hertz was the founder of Hertz Farm Management in 1946.

Carl F. Hertz, son of Martin and Ella Boyer Hertz, was born July 1, 1912, at Laurens, Iowa. 

Few can match the phenomenal farm management career of Carl F. Hertz, the founder of Hertz Farm Management of Nevada. This firm began in 1946 as a one-man office managing a mere three farms. Fifty years later, Hertz and its subsidiaries employ 90 professional farm managers and rural appraisers who manage slightly more than a thousand farms totaling nearly a quarter of a million acres. Their network includes nine field offices for supervising 1543 farm owners and 931 farm operators in Iowa, Illinois and surrounding states (1996).

He attended Iowa State College (now University), worked in the meat lab for 35 cents an hour; was on the championship national Iowa State College livestock judging team; and was a member of FarmHouse Fraternity, who offers an annual scholarship in his name.

As a new graduate of animal husbandry and agricultural economics in 1934, Hertz pioneered in the field of professional farm management by managing a group of northern Missouri farms for Doane Agricultural Service of St. Louis, Missouri. From 1937 to 1944, he managed the first Doane office in Iowa. Then for two years Hertz was a field editor for what was then called ‘Doane Agricultural Digest.’

In 1946 he decided to spend full-time operating a farm he had acquired. However, after several requests came to manage other farm properties, Hertz established his own farm management firm in Nevada where the company is still headquartered. Over the years branch offices were added.

As the business grew, he added staff, hiring only agricultural college-trained farm managers, appraisers, and realtors. His farm management philosophy is based on raising annual commodity crops “which are economically viable and which normally do not require additional water [irrigation]” according to a company brochure. His cadre of farm managers perform “Substantial analysis” pertaining to seed selection, fertilizer applications, and pest control while considering other agronomic factors such as soil type, location and weather.

Hertz is also Hertz Swine Management, Hetz-deBaca Cattle Management Company, an agricultural properties brokerage business, appraisal services, an insurance and risk management subsidiary, and even a travel agency located in Story City. Here sons of Carl and Marjory Hertz are associated with Hertz Farm Management – Randall V. and Thomas A., who both joined the firm in 1978, and Joel R., who began in 1959. A third generation Hertz, Chad A., son of Joel, joined the firm in 1994.

Carl was actively involved with Iowa State University. He served on the ISU Agriculture Foundation for many years, taught rural appraisal classes in the College of Agriculture, and assisted the University in exchanging land for research and expansion. Carl was a member of the Order of the Knoll. Carl's favorite past times included Cyclone athletics, traveling, fishing and family.

Selections of text republished with permission from Iowans who made a difference: 150 years of agricultural progress by Don Muhm and Virginia Wadsley, published by the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, 1996.

Selected Sources


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