Chester B. Baker & Earl R. Swanson
Earl R. Swanson's and Chester B. Baker's long-standing leadership and service to the profession was honored through the establishment of an Appreciation Club within the AAEA Foundation. They were honored for their individual professional contributions and for their close professional association that was instrumental in the integration of farm management, production and resource economics, and agricultural finance in teaching and research. They were also instrumental in bridging the gap between micro economic analysis and aggregate policy analysis. Many members of the profession have benefited from their advice and counseling, career guidance, community service and their many contributions to research and teaching.
Chester B. Baker has increased the rigor and logic of the approach to problems of agricultural finance. This was a major contribution to the profession of agricultural economics. His integration of finance, marketing and production decision processes has brought agricultural finance into the main body of applied agricultural economics by expanding its theoretical foundation. His contribution has facilitated a more comprehensive and unified view of farm management and marketing. Dr. Baker was at the forefront of those few agricultural economists who anticipated the shift in management emphasis from enterprise choice to finance; fortunately, he forged the improved tools with which the needed analyses could be made.
Earl R. Swanson has been a leader in developing and applying the concepts of production economics and operations research to farm management, aggregate farm output analyses, the economics of soil and water conservation and the impacts on farm output of public policy alternatives with respect to environmental quality. He excelled in the depth of his analysis and in his ability to coordinate and lead projects involving researchers from other disciplines. Publications by him attest to the care and creativity of his analysis and to his skill in communicating the results to others. His contributions flow from the excellence of his research, his depth of knowledge and the subtle characteristic sometimes called wisdom and other times called good sense.