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My Experience in AgriPOWER
by Brenda Hastings
I participated as a member of the AgriPOWER Class of 2010. It was a great experience!
There are few involved in producing food today, so it’s important we learn to reach out to connect with people outside agriculture. AgriPOWER provided me the inspiration to be an effective advocate. The seminars were packed with information and resources I could apply in the industry and my community.
The monthly seminars covered topics including tools for being a good agriculture spokesperson, using social media effectively, examining the role of local/state/federal government, exploring energy issues, and observing the perspective of anti-agriculture activists.
The program compelled me to critically study issues I may not have considered prior to this experience. One example of this is the session when a staff member from HSUS spoke with us. It was difficult to listen to her point of view, but if not for AgriPOWER I would not have had this opportunity. Looking at a topic from the opposite perspective is necessary if you want to be an effective leader.
AgriPOWER provided the opportunity to meet great people who share a common interest, travel to Washington, D.C. and examine issues throughout Ohio.
I see my AgriPOWER classmates at Farm Bureau annual meetings, the county presidents trip to Washington, D.C. and other Farm Bureau events throughout the year. Getting to know Farm Bureau members from other areas of the state has made my experience in this organization more meaningful.
I would recommend AgriPOWER to everyone in production agriculture.
AgriPOWER is a leadership and advocacy development program, which consists of seven multi-day institutes (17 total days), covers public policy matters facing local communities, the state of Ohio, the nation and the world. Learn more and find applications on the AgriPOWER webpage. Applications for Class VI are available now and due by April 18.
Brenda Hastings and her husband, Lad, operate Hastings Dairy, a family dairy farm with 650 cows, 550 heifers and farm 500 acres in Northeast Ohio. She is a graduate of AgriPOWER Class III and Geauga County Farm Bureau board member. You can learn more about Brenda and her family farm through her blog, The Dairy Mom.