Growing as a leader — AgriPOWER Session 5 blog

By Jessica Parrish, AgriPOWER Class VIII participant

Another AgriPOWER session is in the books! This time we focused on local government. We met with county commissioners, township trustees, city council members and other local government officials. Throughout our AgriPOWER experience, we’ve learned about the federal and state governments. This session provided a unique local perspective to our learning. We appreciated hearing their stories of how they are trying to make their home communities better places.

One of the most interesting parts of this session was our tour of Cherrybend Pheasant Farm. Their pheasant operation includes raising the birds, running the hunting lodge and coordinating the hunts. We were all very impressed with their family-run operation!

We also enjoyed our change style preference workshop conducted by Dr. King. Learning about how each of us processes change was very interesting! To put our newfound knowledge to use, we also learned how to work with others who have differing change style preferences.

We concluded this session by hearing from Ms. Tracy Freeman of the Nature Conservancy. She has spent her career working to bring all parties together even when their opinions are on opposite sides of the issue. Within the agricultural industry, there are so many ways to apply her experiences. As we work to share our message, we need to work with individuals who have different opinions. Collaboration will be the key to fully sharing our story in the coming years.

Our AgriPOWER experience has been very diverse. We’ve seen all types of agricultural operations and learned about all levels of government. On top of that, we’ve grown as leaders and individuals.


Jessica Parrish of Columbus is a program manager for the Ohio FFA Foundation. She has a hobby farm where she breeds and shows draft Haflinger horses. She is a Franklin County Farm Bureau member and volunteer website manager for Haflinger & Hitch Pony Championship Series.

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