(Tammy, of course)
(still going strong)
Despite growing up there, Tammy Plumlee didn't start out working on the family's turkey farm, which is somewhat ironically named Lazy J.
"My dad named the farm in 1987, when he started it," says Tammy. "The 'J' comes from his name, Jack, but I have no idea why he called it 'lazy.' I've never seen a lazy day on it."
But when her father started developing health problems, Tammy didn't hesitate. She left her corporate, managerial job in town to raise turkeys full-time on the family's Fayetteville-area farm.
As the oldest of Jack's kids, Tammy says she naturally assumed the role of owner and operator and hasn't looked back since. Her small amount of experience raising turkeys quickly grew thanks to continued guidance from her father, who, despite being unable to be on the farm day-in and day-out, is almost always spot-on with his advice.
"Even today, he'll tell you he loves growing turkeys....30 years later, here we are….it's kind of something you settle into and it becomes a way of life."
One aspect of turkey farming Tammy holds in high regard is independence. With it, she's able to make decisions that help her and her family's business and align Lazy J Farm with the rules and regulations that go into responsibly raising turkeys.
"I like being my own boss...I get to be part of the decision-making process and have my own ideas for what will be successful."
Tammy's plan for success is paying off beyond the family's prosperous farm. In early 2017, the national farming community recognized Tammy and her husband, Jeff, for their excellence in poultry production with a Farm Family Environmental Excellence award. The award was based on community involvement, nutrient and environment management, and essentially, an overall assessment of how well the turkeys are being raised. "It was an honor, and I was thankful to win that award."
"I think everybody who does a job day to day wants to feel appreciated and recognized, especially when they're working hard and doing things correctly."
She might not have planned on becoming a turkey farmer, but it's easy to hear the pride and delight in Tammy's voice when she talks about what Lazy J Farm means to her.
"It's very rewarding...in some ways, it's like a dream. To wake up in the morning, look out at the view...there's a peace and a calmness to it."
For more videos of life on Lazy J Farm, visit our YouTube Channel.