Interview with Bill Guenthner
By Joe Kertzman, Managing Editor, Badger Common’Tater
“The property that I currently own was purchased by my father, Dwayne, in March of 1959 from Felix Zeloski [a Hall of Fame seed potato grower],” relates Bill Guenthner of Guenthner Farms Inc. “The first year my father farmed with his father, George Guenthner, and brother, Jerry.”
In 1960, the first crop of seed potatoes was grown, and Guenthner Farms has continued to be a certified seed farm ever since. Prior to 1987, Bill worked part time on the farm, but began full-time employment that year.
“In 1994, Guenthner Farms incorporated, consisting of myself, my father and longtime employee, Tom Schmidt,” he explains. “In 2002, I purchased the land and existing buildings from my father and moved back to the house that I grew up in.”
The original farmhouse has been remodeled several times, and it is believed to have been built in the 1890’s, once housing migrant workers.