Our Story

Where we are from
matters!

With our headquarters in Aurora, Nebraska
and offices in Omaha, The Grain Weevil owes our
success to location, opportunity, and community.

+70%

9.7 Billion bushels of grain
are stored on farms within
500 miles of Aurora, NE.

1,180,000,000

Bushels of grain stored on
farms in Nebraska alone.

200+

Farmers, businesses, and organizations
that have helped Grain Weevil along
the way.

"Build me a robot so I never have to go into a grain bin again!"

A couple of years ago, our friend Zach challenged us to build him a robot so neither he nor his kids would ever have to go in a grain bin again. Grain bins are hot, dirty, and dangerous work places. To adequately manage stored grain farmers are exposed to potential falls, entrapments, auger entanglements, and long term conditions such as Farmer’s Lung. On the nearly 450,000 American farms with grain bins, farmers take these risks over six million times a year. Grain needs to be managed during the entire storage process and a farmer with a shovel has always been the best solution. Unfortunately, this led to 20 entrapment deaths in 2020 alone. Even worse, one out of every five grain bin accidents are teenage boys.

7%

of U.S. farmers show signs and symptoms of the Farmer's Lung disease.

450,000

The number of American farms with grain bins.

20

The number of grain bin entrapments that lead to death in 2020.

The Grain Weevil Team

Chad Johnson
Chief Executive Officer

Chad has over 20 years of informal science education experience, including exhibit design, curriculum development, and program facilitation. Chad was a NASA MESSENGER Fellow, The Association of Science and Technology Centers'  Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge Award Winner, and the recipient American Public Power Associations Energy Innovator award.

Ben Johnson
Chief Innovation Officer

Ben is currently pursuing a degree in electrical engineering at the University of Nebraska Omaha. Ben has been very active in competitive robotics winning awards and honors throughout high school, including winning the US Open Championships. Now, Ben serves on the board of the Youth Engaged in Technology and Innovation non-profit organization and often mentors robotics programs throughout Nebraska.

Zane Zents
Lead Software Engineer

Zane is a computer science and mathematics major at the University of Nebraska Omaha. Zane has served as a Software Engineer at BHMI, Inc. in Omaha and as an engineering tutor at school. With his math degree, Zane is focusing on data science. Zane is a University of Nebraska Omaha Regents scholar and a 4-time member of the Dean’s list.