For the Love of the Land

“Honestly, it’s a way of life,” says Bryan Manzer when he describes working at the family-owned dealership Manzer Equipment, Inc. “I enjoy everything about agriculture—I love learning about new technology and practices in agriculture.”

Bryan is third generation in the Osmond, Neb.-based dealership, which has been serving its community and Northeast Nebraska since 1975. He follows in the footsteps of his grandfather, Chris, and father, Steven. Right now, he’s a jack-of-all-trades at work, “doing my part,” he says.

 

Growing up, Bryan and his family lived on a farm “where I learned to love the land and the work that went with it,” he says. “I went with my grandfather and father to work on the farm or at the equipment dealership every chance I had. My love of agriculture has never stopped growing.”

A Bright Future

And Bryan’s next step confirms that commitment. As a recipient of an Equipment Dealership Foundation scholarship, Bryan starts as a freshman at Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa to study Ag and Food Studies, along with business classes. As he talks about the adventure that unfolds before him, you can hear excitement for the future mixed with a deep affection for the business that he grew up in.

But first, he has plans to study hard and then try his hand working for a larger company—or companies. Since he’s been young, he’s yearned to go out and “do other things,” he says, and then bring that knowledge back to the family business. “I want to use my experience to help further the life of the company,” he says. “And the scholarship is helping me pay for college, where I’ll acquire the skills I need to come back and benefit the world of agriculture. I’m extremely grateful for it.”

It’s All Tied Together

As for what he sees himself doing when he returns to the dealership? A bit of everything. “I want to be able to say I’ve worked every job—as a parts man, technician, salesman, service manager and top it off with operations manager—it’s all tied together,” he says. “Everyone’s working as hard as they can to make the whole thing work.”

The bottom line, though, is that he has a desire to continue his family business into the

third generation. Many of the employees have been there long-term, several more than 30 years. “There’s a feeling about this environment; it’s something that brings me joy—helping farmers get back in the field, helping the ag community, giving back to the community,” he says. “I enjoy what I do, and I hope to come back some day and work more.”

The EDF was established in 1988 to provide scholarship funding to help meet the industry’s needs for trained individuals. EDF also provides temporary assistance for dealerships and its employees affected by natural disasters. Learn more about EDF here.