Haakon “Hank” and Patty Thomsen moved to the Columbia Basin in 1959 and purchased their first farm in Warden. 22 years later, he began a joint venture with his family, the T& R Farms near Pasco.
Hank helped build the region’s reputation for quality potatoes and was a 17-year member of the Washington State Potato Commission. Although he only had an eighth-grade education, Hank read voraciously and was a world traveler. Despite many lean financial years, Thomsen-who saw value in the formal education he never had-saw to it that all of his three children went to college.
The Thomsen’s children, Ralph “Porky” Thomsen, Dr. Sharon Thomsen, and Rella Thomsen Reimann and her spouse, Ron Reimann, established this memorial in honor of Hank and Patty. Their scholarship supports nursing students at Columbia Basin College.
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