The history of the Mattson family farms dates back to 1910, when Carl Mattson’s grandfather, Andrew Madsen, immigrated from Denmark and moved to Montana to participate in the Homestead Act. The original Mattson Homestead is located 4 miles north of the current Mattson Farms farmyard site.
The Homestead Act was a U.S. law that enabled adult Americans to acquire ownership of land in the United States at a minimum cost. The first Homestead Act was passed on May 20, 1862 for the purposes of accelerating the settlement of the western territories. This act offered 160 acres of public land to US citizens on the condition that they live on, cultivate, and improve it. They could then “prove up” and obtain a deed after five years.
Although this appeared to be a great opportunity, none of the Homesteaders knew what challenges they would face as they broke the prairie grasses into cropland. During the 1930s, when times got tough, many families left our geographical area looking for a better life. Other families, such as the Mattsons, had no money and no place to go so they had to stick it out.
Vince is a fourth-generation Mattson working the land. Since 1910, the current farm has remained a family-owned and operated business, growing through the years in size and incorporating new farming practices in order to remain sustainable.
Carl Mattson graduated from Montana State University in 1973 with a degree in Agriculture Production. Born and raised on his family’s farm near Chester, Montana, he returned there to pursue his career as a wheat producer.
In his career, Carl has served on a variety of boards including Chester Public Schools, Montana Grain Growers, NRCS Local Working Group, the State NRCS Technical Advisory Committee, and Montana State FSA Committee as Chairman.
Carl has chaired organizations including PARA (Precision Ag Research Association), I.A.E.A. (International Agriculture Education Association), and the local Chester Lions Club.
As a member of AAPEX (The Association of Agricultural Production Executives), Carl meets yearly with fellow graduates of T.E.P.A.P. (The Executive Program for Agricultural Producers). This yearly meeting has an educational format, but also provides valuable networking among farm managers from the U.S. and foreign countries.
As Mattson Farms transitions to the next generation, Carl likes to spend time riding BMW motorcycles, while being available wherever needed.
Janice Mattson is a 1973 graduate of Montana State University with a degree in Education. Most of Janice’s career has been as the CFO of Mattson Farms, in addition to a machinery operator. As a member of various farm organizations, including Montana Grain Growers, Montana Farm Bureau, Montana Farmer’s Union, and Women Involved in Farm Economics, Janice has been an advocate for producer involvement in the industry.
As a former director on the Montana Wheat and Barley Committee (2001-2009), Janice served on a number of national boards representing various facets of the wheat industry. As Chairman of U.S. Wheat Associates (2009-2010), she traveled and observed the workings of the U.S. export market. In 2010, Janice was recognized by Montana State University as "Outstanding Agricultural Leader".
In addition to enjoying time with the five grandchildren, Janice is mentoring the right fit to take her place in the farm business.
Son of Carl and Janice Mattson, Vince is a 2001 Ag-Business graduate from Montana State University. As CEO, Vince’s duties include overseeing all farming operations, marketing of products, and management of employees.
As a graduate of The Executive Program for Agriculture Producers (T.E.A.P.), Vince attends yearly AAPEX meetings when possible. Vince is currently the Past President of MGGA (Montana Grain Growers Association) and serves on a Climate Change Committee with the National Wheat Association, NAWG.
Vince’s wife, Kerry, works as a Physical Therapy Assistant at the local medical center. They have two children, Brie & Connor. Kerry takes time away from her job to operate one of the combines during harvest. As a family, they enjoy water skiing, snow skiing, and traveling.
Carl and Janice’s daughter, Megan, is an insurance agent in the town of Chester. Northern Plains Insurance sells crop, property, life, and health insurance products. Megan’s husband, Chad, is a general construction contractor. They have threee children, Eliza, Brody, and Stella.