AgriPOWER Class X

By Jacob Hoelscher, AgriPOWER Class X participant

In our generation we have seen the farm population of America dwindle from 3 percent to less than 1 percent, the birth of Roundup ready technology and the consolidation of the pork, poultry and dairy industry. Due to these changes of practices and size of farming operations, a schism has formed between the public and our industry.  With less of America having a personal tie to the food they consume, advocacy is more important now than ever, especially with much of the population yearning for this connection. The voice to portray this advocacy begins with the grassroots movement that is Farm Bureau and was the headline of our first session.

As a member of the 10th class of Ohio Farm Bureau’s AgriPOWER, we have begun to take the steps to find out how we, as leaders of our industry can utilize our strengths to advocate and lead. Workshops highlighting our strengths and emotional intelligence were led spectacularly by Elise Stoddard of AFBF. We were given a tour of the Nationwide and Farm Bureau connection and were given the opportunity to practice public speaking amongst our peers. Personally, my favorite session was the after hour “Suite Time,” where our group was able to network and get to know each other individually.  I look forward to the next couple of months to see how what we learned, and will learn, will continue to influence our ability to lead going forward.

While only one session deep into AgriPower X, it is my belief that our group of 17 Young Ag Professionals has already begun to shape our local communities and will continue to do so on larger platforms.

Lastly, I would like to thank Melinda Witten for leading our class, as she has done for many of the classes before us and for the Ohio Farm Bureau in making this amazing class available.

Another AgriPOWER Class X blog

Laramie Wells discusses Farm Bureau’s roots.

Photo caption

Bottom row (l to r): Amy Hamilton, Megan Dresbach, Trish Preston, Katie Esselburn, Amanda Hill,

Middle row (l to r): Sarah Ison, Ashley Rose, Laramie Wells, Jonathan Zucker, Bailey Morrell

Top row (l to r): Lindsay Walls, Aubrey Fowler-Shaw, Jacob Hoelscher, Vicky Popp, Kayla Finton, Doug Franz, Sara Tallmadge

We go to a lot of Farm Bureau events, and there’s a lot of camaraderie built because you’re meeting with people who have similar interests and goals.
Andy Hollenback's avatar
Andy Hollenback

Licking County Farm Bureau

Event Calendar
If you have issues with local planning or have legal questions, someone at the Farm Bureau has the answer for you, or they’ll connect you with someone who does.
Gayle Hansen's avatar
Gayle Hansen

Cuyahoga County Farm Bureau

Hansen's Greenhouse
Farm Bureau is an incredible organization that has given me countless professional development opportunities in addition to advocating for all sizes and types of farmers.
Shana Angel's avatar
Shana Angel

Tuscarawas County Farm Bureau

Through its policies it brings together people in the agricultural community and invests in building vibrant communities that support agriculture.
Eric Bernstein 's avatar
Eric Bernstein

Kalmbach Feeds

Kalmbach Feeds
If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington, D.C.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
As a member of Farm Bureau, I am glad that this organization takes action when necessary to protect and advance agriculture.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

Policy Development
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