Tag Archives: ag comm

ALOT Class XVI Unites

12 Mar

ALOTLogoSmall-editedAgricultural Leaders of Tomorrow (ALOT) is a two year adult leadership training program that targets rural leaders and agricultural producers who have a passion to promote Missouri agriculture and strengthen their rural communities. The program enhances communication and leadership skills, expands knowledge of ag issues and encourages leadership initiative in local communities.

The ALOT Class XVI has so far visited Columbia and Jefferson City, Missouri and I am proud to say I was one of them. After the initial anxiety wore off I was blown away with the instant comradery the group formed. Over the first two weekends together we hadn’t simply met, we had united.

Columbia, MO was our first stop in the ALOT program that includes ten in-state three day sessions, a week long seminar in Washington D.C., and a two week international experience to a country that impacts Missouri agriculture.

Kristin Perry, executive director for ALOT, took a few minutes to share the rich history of ALOT and what she thought the take home message was from our first event.

“The program started in 1983 with a Kellogg grant that was sought by Dr. Bruce Bullock, Dr. Daryl Hobbs and Dr. Ron Plain. They wanted to teach people involved in agriculture how to be more involved in policy and leadership positions that would create a positive affect on Missouri agriculture.”

Kristin said her real goal in this program is to help everyone discover their passion and find how they can take an active role in the advancement of Missouri agriculture.

“Read more, listen more, learn more so you can become more involved, better informed and better connected for the future.”

Listen to my complete interview with Kristin and stay tuned as I chronicle our journey of leadership development in the ever-changing world of agriculture.

Team AG – USFRA’s Food Dialogues – #FoodD

15 Nov

Since 9am this morning I have been glued to my computer screen as I watched the Food Dialogues streamed live from New York City. What are the Food Dialogues you might asked? Well, they were started by the US Farmers & Ranchers Alliance,  (USFRA) “is a newly formed alliance consisting of a wide range of prominent farmer- and rancher-led organizations and agricultural partners. This marks the first time agricultural groups at the national, regional and state levels have collaborated to lead the dialogue and answer Americans’ questions about how we raise our food – while being stewards of the environment, responsibly caring for our animals and maintaining strong businesses and communities.”

Today’s conversation consisted of dialogue on: Media, Marketing & Healthy Choices – Antibiotics & Your Food – Biotechnology (GMO) & Your Food. So, why is it so important for us to be talking about these hot topics floating around the agriculture industry? Because farmers and ranchers aren’t the only ones talking about them. Consumers across the country are asking questions. It is our job as agriculturalist to answer them. If we don’t tell our story then others tell it for us and it may not be the story that should be told.

Farmers and ranchers across the world farm differently. They use technology differently. What is feasible for me, may not be feasible for my neighbor or for a farmer across the country.  The fight should not be against conventional farming vs. organic/natural farming methods. We need to educate consumers about the food they are eating and remember we are on the same team. Team Ag!

Even though I was born and raised in the world of agriculture, I learned a lot of new information today about these issues. It will help me answer questions people have about the ever changing world of technology in agriculture. I have been even more motivated to share my story of farming. I challenge you to do the same. Maybe blogging isn’t for you. Then take pictures and use social media to help explain why you are passionate about agriculture.

If you missed this Food Dialogue, don’t worry there will be more. Check out what people said online by using #FoodD on Twitter.  You can also check out AgWired‘s photos of the event. Now that I have spent my entire day following the dialogue and live tweeting, I now need to play catch up on all the other things I need to get do.

On the Road with AgWired

22 May

I am currently attending my first 2012 Alltech International Symposium with AgWired. This week I have met so many people who are as passionate about promoting the agricultural industry as me. Each time I turn around I find myself face-to-face with another ag media professional and the best part is they are even will to share their tricks of the trade. The last couple of days has been a true learning experience. I can’t wait to put all I have learned to good use in the great world of agriculture.

Here are a few links to some blogs posts I have written for AgWired the last couple of day here at the Alltech International Symposium:

A UK Prospective on Improvement of the Food Chain

The Farmer of the Future

Alltech Kentucky Night

Alltech Symposium Press Conference

Reality Show on the Road

24 Feb

I just read my AgWired daily news update and I am so sad I missed out on the latest ZimmPoll. They asked, “What’s the next “big” thing in ag comm/social media?” The majority of voters said smartphones/mobile apps are the next big thing. This would easily have been my second vote, because I can’t lie about my obsession with my lil best friend (aka my iPhone). Reality Show on the RoadBut farm reality TV show would have won my vote. My husband and I have had multiple conversations about turning life on the show road into a reality show. No, I do not me the Broadway show road. I am talking about life traveling from livestock show to livestock show. Those who have traveled from the American Royal to North American International Livestock Expedition to National Western Stock Show to Fort Worth Stock Show and then to Houston Livestock Show all have a story to tell. Some from the winners circle and others from late night barn parties. Cameras can capture the breed rivalries and the scandalous barn relationships. Then catch the early mornings and hours of getting ready for those few minutes of glory in the ring. Can’t you picture it?

I have met some of my best friends over the years showing cattle. That’s even how I met my husband. During my first year of teaching agriculture education I had a freshman girl ask me how I met my husband. I responded with, “It started when my dad hired him…” I didn’t have time to finish the sentence before the entire class erupted in laughter. It took me a second to get what they were laughing at. I finally was able to say, “It started when my dad hired him to fit cattle for us at the Ozark Empire Fair.” But my students never forgot my blunder in word choice and continued to believe money was exchanged between my dad and husband. I can honestly say after that summer at the Ozark Empire Fair the rest was history. My husband and I still travel from show to show year-round exhibiting cattle, hanging out with friends and of course making new ones.

I hope you join me in thinking the next reality show should be called, “The Show Road.”

And don’t think you can go make money on this amazing idea without cutting me a check.

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