The Eastern Idaho Agriculture Hall of Fame
2023 Ed Duren Memorial
Young Producer Award
The Ed Duren Memorial Young Producer Award recognizes ranchers/farmers/food producers, 35 years of age or younger, who are directly engaged in production agriculture for their commitment, innovation and leadership/service benefitting the Agricultural industry. With the average age of Idaho farmers upward of 57, these award recipients represent the exciting – and critical – future of agriculture in Eastern Idaho. 2020 was the first year a class of award winners was recognized by the EIAHF.
Launched in 2018, this award is presented in memory of Edward Paul Duren, a man whose positive impact on agriculture in Eastern Idaho is beyond measure. A University of Idaho Extension Livestock Specialist based in Soda Springs, Idaho, Ed spent a 39-year career (and many more years as a professor emeritus) providing education, outreach and leadership to producers and organizations across Idaho and beyond.
Ed was nationally and internationally respected as a trailblazer, author and educator, and was a tireless advocate for the involvement of youth in agriculture and agricultural experiences. He pioneered a holistic ranch business model he titled “integrated resource management,” and was instrumental in linking university faculty and allied industry with Idaho farmers and ranchers for applied on-farm research and demonstrations responding to locally-identified needs.
As well as state and national leadership, Ed served for several years as a board member of the Eastern Idaho Agriculture Hall of Fame. He was inducted into both the Eastern Idaho Agriculture Hall of Fame and the Eastern Idaho Horsemen’s Hall of Fame, and received many other honors and awards, but was particularly gratified when a young Idaho farmer or rancher was successful, and in turn, gave back to the industry.
Ed had a lifelong passion for family, agriculture, education and draft horses.
The recipient of the Ed Duren Memorial Young Producers Award is selected by the EIAHF Board from candidates identified by the EIAHF Board and Eastern Idaho Agriculture Hall of Fame inductees. The recipient is recognized at the annual Reception & Banquet.
2023 Ed Duren Memorial Young Producer Award Recipients
Paige Miller Nelson, Rigby
Raised on the family farm in Fremont County, Paige is a fifth generation ag producer with experience raising potatoes, wheat, barley, corn, alfalfa and a cow-cow-calf feedlot ranch. Paige developed her passion for agriculture working on the family farm.
While in college at BYU-Idaho, Paige double minored in journalism and natural resources to compliment her animal science major to allow her to pursue a career in agriculture journalism. During college, Paige served in various leadership roles include Idaho Cattle Association intern, chairperson and organizer of the first-ever BYU-I Ag Days in 2013 and the 2013 BYU-I Beef Day and as vice president of the BYU-I Cattlemen’s Association.
Paige and her husband Tyler, also a fifth generation rancher, live on the Nelson cattle ranch in Rigby. Together they own and manage a cow-calf herd, bred heifers and lease corrals to a rodeo bull consigner. Additionally, they manage the family direct-to-consumer beef business, ML Brand Beef.
Paige and Tyler are the parents of three children, Sylvia, Lydia and Cort.
Past Recipients of the Ed Duren Memorial Young Producer Award