Growing up on our small farm in Travis County, Texas, I would occasionally see the survey form from the Texas Crop and Livestock Reporting Service on my dad’s desk. Dad retired as a pilot from the US Air Force after a 28-year career, including flying B-29’s during WWII in the Pacific. My parents bought the rural house and acreage in central Texas so that, among other reasons, my two brothers and I could learn the lessons of hard work while they held down jobs off the farm. Little did I know at the time that I would one day be a “bureaucrat” sending out those survey forms to thousands of farmers across the nation. During my 32 ½ years working for USDA National Agriculture Statistics Service (formerly known as the Crop and Livestock Reporting Service), I have seen and measured firsthand the tremendous changes in agriculture – yet the reason for conducting agricultural statistics surveys really has not changed.