Michael G. Simon of Conway, Ark., a versatile farmer with an emphasis on dairy cattle, is the 2007 Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year for Arkansas.

In 1969, Simon launched his own operation and has guided it to one of the most versatile in Arkansas.

“Agriculture is Arkansas' No. 1 industry and I'm very privileged to have been selected.” He was selected in judging conducted by the Arkansas Farm Bureau and was nominated by William Dodgen.

The dairy operation of the Simon farm includes 112 milking cows with an annual production of more than 2.4 million gallons. His major crops include 200 acres of corn silage (18 tons per acre), 150 acres of corn for grain (125 bushels per acre), 110 acres of hay (4 tons per acre), 225 acres of wheat (25 bushels per acre) and 59 acres of soybeans (25 bushels per acre).

Simon and his wife, Mary Jo, have seven grown children. “We are very fortunate to have a good set up with three of our sons — Frederic, Matt, and Jason — working with us.”