“Pork is versatile, nutritious and simply delicious,” says Barb Campbell Determan, who has been passionately promoting pork during her lifetime. Raised in Little York, Illinois, Barb served as Henderson County Pork Queen. After attending the University of Illinois, she wrote for Drover’s and then started selling pharmaceuticals for the pork industry. Barb was working a tradeshow booth at the American Pork Congress when she met her husband, a pork producer from Early, Iowa. Since he obviously couldn’t move his farm, she relocated to Northwest Iowa.
Today Barb serves on the Pork Safety & Quality Committee for the National Pork Board and also serves on two committees for the National Pork Producers Council. In addition, she served as NPPC president in 2001-02.
In addition to serving as a passionate advocate for the pork industry, Barb is also a tireless volunteer for the 4-H organization. She became a leader for the Early Achievers 4-H Club just one month after she was married and recently earned her 30-year volunteer pin. She is also past president of the Iowa 4-H Foundation and is serving her sixth year as a 4-H Foundation Trustee.
This mother of three is also an active partner in the family farming operation plus is president of the Heartland Marketing Group, which she founded in 1982. With a schedule this full, it’s no wonder that Barb has a list of favorite go-to meals!
“We once had a hired man who said the Determans don’t eat a meal if it can’t be made in a slow cooker,” says Barb with a warm smile and a twinkle in her eye. “And you know, that’s not far from the truth – especially during harvest. Since I help run the combine and haul grain, I don’t have much time to spend in the kitchen. I’ll put some pork in the crock pot, so we all can enjoy a home-cooked meal.”
When she does have the extra time, Barb enjoys cooking for family and friends. And when she needs a little more inspiration, she checks out the Pork® Be InspiredTM website for healthy recipes. Her other favorite past times include cheering for the Iowa State Cyclones and the Fighting Illini, as well as crocheting prayer shawls. She also enjoys spending time outdoors.
“All five of us enjoy being outside, and our farming operation has allowed us to work together and develop a closeness that we might not otherwise have had,” says Barb. Steve does the book work for their farming operation, as well as for Heartland Marketing Group. He also writes manure management plans plus farms full time. The Determans credit farm work, and especially livestock chores, for helping instill a strong ethic in their children. All three children showed hogs, cattle and sheep in 4-H, which helped them learn to set goals.
Today the Determan’s children are still working to meet their lofty goals. Andy, 28, is a graduate of the University of Illinois and lives in Kansas City where he’s location manager and grain merchandiser for the Scouler Company. In addition, Andy is on track to receive his MBA by May. Dan, 26, graduated from Iowa State University with a degree in Hotel, Restaurant, and Institution Management. He serves as Group Sales Manager with the Denihan Hospitality Group in Chicago where he manages two of the company’s boutique hotels. He also plans to start graduate school in the fall. Daughter Kourtney will turn 22 next week. She’s a senior at Iowa State University, majoring in ag education with a communications option. Kourtney plans to attend law school after earning her undergraduate degree from ISU.
This weekend the Determans – like most Americans – will take a break from work to enjoy Super Bowl XLVI with friends. And, yes, pork is sure to be on the menu when they gather. Check out these pork inspired recipes for Super Bowl Sunday from ham-wrapped dill pickles to Cuban Glazed Pork Loin.
“The Cuban Glazed Pork Loin is ridiculously easy, but it tastes like you spent hours in the kitchen,” says Barb. “It’s an easy entrée to make ahead when company is coming, and it’s always a crowd pleaser. Plus, the leftover loin makes the most delicious Southwestern Pork Tortilla Soup.”