For 36 years, his byline graced the pages of The Progressive Farmer. At his retirement, upper management said of Delmar (Del) Deterling, “Del has won all sorts of awards and honors, but his greatest accomplishment was showing the staff the meaning of commitment and professionalism.” Deterling is recognized as an award-winning journalist, noted editor and for service to better his profession and his community.
In 1959, he received a Bachelor of Science in agricultural economics from Texas A&M. After graduation, Mr. Deterling served in the Air Force for three years and during this time was able to complete a second degree in Agricultural Journalism from Texas A&M in 1962. After military service, he began work in the Rio Grande Valley where he was the Information Specialist on the Southwest Screwworm Eradication Program and the Area Information Specialist for the Texas A&M Lower Rio Grande Valley Research and Extension Center in Weslaco, Texas.
In 1966, Mr. Deterling was called by Mr. Charlie Scruggs (also a member of the Tyrus R. Timm Honor Registry) to serve as Associate Editor for The Progressive Farmer magazine. During his time there, Mr. Deterling rose through the company to become the Southwest Regional Editor from 1972-1987 and then to the position of Executive Editor in 1987. While at the magazine, he authored or co-authored over 1,500 feature articles on all aspects of agriculture.
Mr. Deterling’s talent and writing proficiency has been recognized with many writing and professional awards. For writing, he received several Oscar in Agriculture awards, was named the American Agricultural Editors Association Agricultural Writer of the Year, and was named as a Master Writer in 1992. As a professional, he received numerous awards, including several Distinguished Service Awards from various organizations and companies.
In addition to his notable career as a writer and editor, Mr. Deterling also placed emphasis on service to society as is evidenced by his gifts, professional activities and community involvement. In November, 2007, the Deterlings donated $25,000 to establish the Del and Lil Deterling Family Endowed Opportunity Award Scholarship through the Texas A&M Foundation. In 1992, he received the Outstanding Alumnus designation for the College of Agriculture and Life Science. In 2002, he served on the Leaders Panel for the Texas A&M University System Ag Program 21. Mr. Deterling served as president and director of the Dallas Agricultural Club in 1974 and 1997 and as president of the American Agricultural Editors Association in 1978. He also serves on the Pan American Committee for the State Fair of Texas and is a member of several national and state associations. Additionally, he has served in various capacities for the Bethel Lutheran Church in Dallas, Texas.
Mr. Deterling is married to Lillian and they have three children and seven grandchildren.