He catches himself in mid-sentence when he answers the phone at work.
“Quincy Al-,” he says when he picks up a ringing phone. “Hubbard Milling Company.”
After 20 years, though, some things have become ingrained in Bill Judge’s mind. As much as he has become a part of Quincy.
On Friday, Hubbard Milling Company took over Quincy Alfalfa. Judge and his partner, the James Farrell Company, finally sold after being pursued by Hubbard for about five years.
Judge, who has operated the Crystalyx and hay processing plant since 1973, will slowly ease into retirement. He said he plans to stay on during the transitional phase, which may be up to a year long. For a man who once swore he would never use a typewriter at work, Judge is slowly making his own transition, even though he can’t get his new fax machine to work, yet.
“It’ll be a very smooth transition for local farmers,” said Judge. “The biggest transition for me is bringing in all this fancy equipment. I’ ve got a new fax and copier.”
He has been in the feed and flour processing business since 1953, even though it was not what he originally wanted to do.
As a youngster growing up in Montana, Judge wanted to do what everyone else seemed to be doing - sheep herding.
“I wanted to go sheep herding as a 10-year-old,” said Judge. “On my second the dogs started up and the head sheep man shot the dog. That convinced me I didn’t want to be in sheep anymore.”
In 1953, Judge accepted a job with General Mills in Great Falls, Mont. He traveled all over the country with General Mills and Western Farmers, but he wanted to settle down. He chose Quincy.
“I wanted to settle in one place and see what I could do on my own,” Judge said.