Eric Bot (left) was presented the annual Community Service Award by current Minneota Rotary President Rick Bot. The event was held at the City Hall Bar and Grill last Thursday in Minneota.

Bot gets Community Service Award

The Minneota Rotary Club Thursday night presented their annual Community Service Award to Eric Bot of ADOM (Area Development of Minneota) for his part in bringing the “Chasing Our Tails,” company to Minneota.

“I looked up the company on the internet and found the contact list, made a call, sent an email and within a few hours the owners showed interest,” Bot indicated. Since then, the company has moved its shipping arm of the business to the former Schott Building.

“In several days, the owner (Stephen Trachtenburg) made a trip to Minneota and the ‘Chasing Our Tails’ dog treat business had found a new home,” Bot indicated.

The annual award, which has been in existence since 1964, has now been given to 55 members (or groups) of the community.

The first recipient in 1964 was Lester Christianson. In 2017, it was given to Herb and Marilynn Pagel.

The award to Eric Bot came during the 2018 year and was made by current Rotary president Rick Bot. Eric Bot has been a member of ADOM for 12 years. The group’s goal has been to keep business alive in Minneota.

He not only helped entice new business to the community, but he also started his own business, Custom Extruding, which has been in operation since 1993.

His business provides feed for hogs, which can be mixed on the farm cheaper than buying pre-mixed feed. After founding his business, he developed the idea of extruding soybeans. This meant the beans went through a heating process and became a viable feed for hogs.

That business began in 2000. “Everyone needs to help and be ready to do their part,” said Bot. “There is never enough money to get everything done but it’s imperative everyone step up and help out,” Eric Bot added.

He indicated he’s learned to look at all the facts, weigh the benefits and liabilities and make a decision — then stand behind that decision.

Bot was born and raised on a farm three miles northeast of Minneota. He eventually learned to help his dad with chores. Summers meant planting, weeding, baling and working on 4-H projects.

“The highlight of the summer was the county fair, where all the hard work was judged and hopefully you got to go to the state fair,” Eric Bot said.

His parents are Barney and Alice, who assisted with 4-H. Barney served on the St. Ed’s School Board and worked in the church and the community.

Taking a cue from his parents, Eric Bot learned the value of hard work and took on the same types of community and church services. He was elected to the Minneota City Council and served from 1987 to 1995.

He also served on the Minneota Ambulance crew from 1986 to 1993. During those years, there were times when the crew members were “on call” with a pager seven days a week. “There were limited numbers of crew members and I definitely supported joining with North Ambulance,” he said.

Eric Bot is a 1983 graduate of Minneota High School.

He went to SDSU for one year, then came back to Minneota to farm and work. In 1990, he married Phyllis (DeSmet) and they have four children.

Jared lives in Marshall and works at ADM; Angela lives in Minneota and is married to Dean and they have three daughters; Karissa recently moved back to Minneota and Lucas lives at home and works at Runnings.

The new Community Service Award recipient said, “It’s essential in this day and age to stay ahead of the game and to constantly be on the look-out for improvements to our town," Bot said.

The fact Bot was able to contact the owners of the new businesses and secure them for the community, is a win-win for everyone.

It ended a search by ADOM to fill the Schott building — which had been donated to the community and ADOM by the former owner of the building.

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