Emily Krueger of West Salem, Ohio was named the winner of the 2011 American Farm Bureau Federation Collegiate Discussion Meet held recently during the AFBF Young Farmer and Rancher Conference in Orlando. Representing Ohio Farm Bureau Federation (OFBF), she topped a field of 47 national contestants. As the winner, she received a $2,500 scholarship from the CHS Foundation. She previously was awarded a $250 scholarship from the CHS Foundation for being Ohio’s representative to the contest.
The Collegiate Discussion Meet is designed to develop young leaders for agriculture and Farm Bureau. The contest allows participants to develop communication skills, increase understanding of key agricultural issues and become consensus builders and problem solvers.
Krueger, 20, is a student at Ohio State University where she is studying agricultural communications. She grew up on the small farm of her parents, Phil and Bonnie, and worked on a beef and horse farm. She and her parents participated in an advisory council of the Wayne County Farm Bureau. She currently serves as vice president of the Collegiate Young Farmers club of Ohio State University.
“Ohio Farm Bureau has been an amazing help to me,” Krueger said. She thanked OFBF staff member Darrell Rubel for his assistance in preparing for the contest. And she expressed appreciation to the Wayne County Farm Bureau for its support. Krueger’s goal is to work in agricultural public relations, “where I can help farmers and consumers,” she said.
Krueger participated in four rounds of competition. The topic discussed by the four finalists was “How will food movements such as ‘foodie’ and ‘locavore,’ which are focused primarily in urban centers, influence national agricultural production and federal programs?” Topics discussed in elimination rounds were government’s influence on agriculture, the role of technology in food production and communicating about food prices.
This is the first time an Ohioan has participated in the Collegiate Discussion Meet, according to Larry Antosch, senior director of program innovation for OFBF. The organization is working to expand leadership development opportunities for collegians interested in agriculture.
“To have Emily win this contest is extremely exciting for Ohio Farm Bureau. We’re very proud of Emily, and we know she’ll go on to be a great leader for Ohio agriculture,” Antosch said.