John M. “Bubba” Trotman
John M. (Bubba) Trotman’s deep affection for agriculture began when he was a child growing up in Pike County, Alabama, as the son of a farmer and mule trader. He left his home town of Troy while still a teenager when he was recruited by AU Track Coach Wilbur Hutsell to play football for Auburn University (then the Alabama Polytechnic Institute), where he majored in agriculture.
Trotman served in the Merchant Marines and the U.S. Army, then returned home to help his father run the farm and mule business. After the elder Trotman died in 1950, the younger Trotman moved the headquarters of the family’s farming interests to Montgomery and, in 1954, began Trotman Cattle Company, a nationally renowned cattle order buying enterprise. That year, Trotman also met and married his late wife, Ellen Rogers of Montgomery, and became increasingly involved in agricultural organizations. He was elected to the Montgomery Production Credit Association (PCA) board of directors in 1961 and became chairman of the board in 1966, serving until his retirement in 1999. In addition, Trotman also became a leader in the cattle industry, working his way up the ranks of local, state, and national service.
Trotman served in many offices within the cattle industry, including president of the Alabama
Cattlemen’s Association in 1966 and National Cattlemen’s Association president in 1972, becoming internationally known and loved as “Mr. Cattleman” for his energy, charm, diplomacy, and vision. He was inducted into the Alabama Livestock Hall of Fame in 1981 and was elected president of the Southeastern Livestock Exposition in 1983.
President Ronald Reagan chose Trotman to head the Alabama Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service (ASCS) in 1985, an appointment Trotman held for five years. He also has been, and continues to be, involved in myriad community and charity organizations focusing on everything from the arts to cancer prevention for which he has received innumerable awards and honors. He and Ellen, who died in 1991, have four sons and nine grandchildren.