Fifteen farm and ranch women leaders graduated today from the fall session of Women’s Communications Boot Camp hosted by the American Farm Bureau Federation.
The intensive four-day course completed by the agricultural leaders featured hands-on sessions related to public speaking, working with the media and messaging. Graduates will use their training in a variety of ways such as participating in local media opportunities to strategically support Farm Bureau’s policy work, sharing information with elected officials and joining social media campaigns that spotlight modern agriculture.
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Row 1 (L to R): Monet Bottenfield, Pennsylvania; Jacque Duyck-Jones, Oregon; Amanda Balon, Pennsylvania; and Carrie Barnhardt, North Carolina.
Row 2 (L to R): AFB Women’s Leadership Committee Chair Isabella Chism, Indiana; Karin Bright, Ohio; Cindy Stroup, North Carolina; Renea Jones, Tennessee; Julie Yahnke-Schrum, Pennsylvania; Stacy Irwin, Ohio; and AFB Women’s Leadership Committee Vice Chair Lorenda Overman, North Carolina.
Row 3 (L to R): Jeannette Kreher-Herberling, New York; Stasha Baldwin, Maine; Amy Hale, Louisiana; Madalynn Kainer, Texas; Karen Dodson, Oklahoma; and Kat Peper, Wisconsin.
“Consumer interest in food and how it is produced and grown remains high, which means communicating effectively about agriculture is more important than ever,” said Isabella Chism, an Indiana row crop farmer and chair of the AFB Women’s Leadership Committee. “The women leaders who completed this training will use their skills in their communities and for Farm Bureau on local, state and national levels.”
Boot Camp graduates are Amy Hale, Louisiana; Stasha Baldwin, Maine; Jeannette Kreher-Heberling, New York; Carrie Barnhardt, North Carolina; Cindy Stroup, North Carolina; Karin Bright, Ohio; Stacy Irwin, Ohio; Karen Dodson, Oklahoma; Jacque Duyck-Jones, Oregon; Amanda Balon, Pennsylvania; Monet Bottenfield, Pennsylvania; Julie Yahnke-Schrum, Pennsylvania; Renea Jones, Tennessee; Madalynn Kainer, Texas; and Kat Peper, Wisconsin.
“Women farmers and ranchers are passionate advocates for agriculture,” said AFBF President Zippy Duvall. “I applaud our graduates as they increase their engagement with both consumers and elected officials and take the next step in their leadership journey in agriculture.”
This is the 17th Boot Camp. The program has 254 graduates and is open to all women involved in Farm Bureau.
“This training has been extremely beneficial,” said Peper. “It provided the opportunity to improve my advocacy skills in a number of areas and gain greater confidence as a voice for agriculture. It was also valuable to connect with amazing women involved in farming and ranching from across the country.”
The American Farm Bureau Women’s Leadership Committee, in partnership with AFBF staff, hosts and provides training for Women’s Communications Boot Camp. A spring session of Boot Camp will be held April 3-6, 2023, with applications opening in December.
Photos from this event may be downloaded at https://fb.org/bootcampfall22.