Williamsport resident Jamie Metzger is one of 20 farmers and agribusiness professionals selected by the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation (OFBF) to participate in the 2010-2011 AgriPOWER program. Metzger is employed by Chillicothe City Schools as a high school science teacher. She is also involved in the family farm operation which consists of wheat, soybeans and corn.
OFBF launched AgriPOWER in 2008 as an elite training program designed to help participants become leaders and advocates for agriculture. The yearlong program consists of seven two-to-three-day training sessions that focus on public policy issues confronting agriculture and the food industry.
Topics covered include public policy issues facing local communities, the state of Ohio, the nation and the world. Specific sessions help class members develop important skills necessary to becoming an effective leader and advocate, including spokesperson and media training, etiquette training, social networking, communications and more. One of the institute programs will be held in Washington, D.C. to help class members gain a valuable understanding of national and global issues.
“As farmers, we have always known what our business is and how we do it, but when it comes to communicating this to others, that is not our strength,” said Ryan McClure, a Paulding County grain and livestock farmer who was a member of the initial AgriPOWER class. “Through AgriPOWER, I was able to gain the tools and comfort level needed to be able to convey my messages to others.”
In addition to OFBF, AgriPOWER partners include Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation, Farm Credit Services of Mid-America, American Dairy Association Mideast, Ohio Pork Producers Council, Ohio Corn Growers Association, Ohio Sheep and Wool Program, Ohio Cattlemen’s Association, Ohio Beef Council, Ohio Soybean Council, Southern Ohio Agricultural and Community Development Foundation, United Producers, Inc., Washington State Community College, Washington State Community College Tech Prep, Brown County Farm Bureau, Butler County Farm Bureau, Cuyahoga County Farm Bureau, Franklin County Farm Bureau, Geauga County Farm Bureau, Hamilton County Farm Bureau and Wood County Farm Bureau.
For additional information about AgriPOWER visit tinyurl.com/agripower, contact OFBF at 614-246-8249 or e-mail [email protected].