Young Ag Professionals

For this edition of Growing our Generation, I wanted to offer a reminder of the excellent programming and opportunities available to Farm Bureau members ages 18-35. If you are looking for leadership development, we have it. If you want to talk about the success of your farm or business, you can. If you want to brush up or develop your public policy acumen, there is a trip coming up this fall.

Below, I have shared a little bit about each program and how to take part. As always, contact the county Farm Bureau office if you have questions. Ohio Farm Bureau is passionate about cultivating the future of farming. We would love for you to get involved!

Young Ag Professionals State Committee
2021 YAP State Committee
2021 YAP State Committee

Young Ag Professionals State Committee members assist with creating educational and leadership development programs for Ohio Farm Bureau’s Young Agricultural Professionals. A total of eight positions are on the team, and a position may be filled by either a single individual or a married couple. Members serve a two-year term with four returning and four new positions each year. 

Applications for the 2023-2025 committee are being accepted through May 13, 2022.

Excellence in Agriculture Contest
Joe Everett
Joe Everett – 2021 Excellence in Agriculture winner, Shelby County.

The Excellence in Agriculture award application is now available. If you work primarily off the farm and are a leader in Farm Bureau and the community, then this contest is for you. This award is designed to recognize successful young agricultural professionals (singles or couples) who are actively contributing and growing through their involvement with Farm Bureau and agriculture, but do not have the majority of income subject to normal production risk. Applications are being accepted through May 13, 2022. To learn more about this award, be sure to register for the bi-weekly learning sessions.

Outstanding Young Farmer Contest
Kyle Stockton
Kyle Stockton – 2021 Outstanding Young Farmer, Allen County.

The Outstanding Young Farmer contest is also accepting applications for the 2022 award. The Outstanding Young Farmer contest is designed to recognize successful young farmers, age 35 or younger, for achievements in the business of farming and leadership in the agricultural community. Applicants should have a majority of their income subject to normal production risks as well as ownership (or part ownership) of the operation/business. Applications are available online and must be submitted by May 13, 2022. To learn more about this award, be sure to register for the bi-weekly learning sessions.

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience – Sept. 13-15, 2022
YAP DC Experience
Group photo from the 2021 Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience

Young professionals with strong leadership potential are hand-selected each year to share their ideas with members of Congress, learn about international agriculture and how to grow personally and professionally. The trip takes place each September and includes a visit with the young professional’s congressional representative, meeting with American Farm Bureau staff members for industry and issues updates, a behind-the-scenes look at how Washington really works, networking with other young professionals, and exploring a world view of agriculture during a visit to an embassy. Contact your county Farm Bureau if you are interested in the annual trip.

Local YAP Grant Recipients 

Each year Farm Credit Mid-America supports local YAP programming efforts by providing 10, $500 grants to local YAP groups. The following event was selected to receive $500 for the 2022 award cycle.

Earth Day | Ag Day – April 22, 2022

Wilmington College Collegiate Farm BureauEarth Day | Ag Day is an annual event that the Wilmington College Collegiate Farm Bureau organizes. The purpose of this event is to educate attendees about the environment, agriculture and sustainability in a fun, engaging way. This year, the collegiate Farm Bureau will add a “pop-up park” fair, more broadly called PARK(ing) Day across the United States, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, April 21. Members of the campus community will have the opportunity to reserve parking spaces on campus in which they can install “instant parks,” according to chapter adviser Corey Cockerill. Parks can include any non-permanent fixtures or features, such as lawn chairs, hammocks, yard games or concessions. Participants are encouraged to include interactive displays or activities that celebrate the outdoors or natural spaces. Prizes will be given for the top three most creative pop-up parks. 

Members of the Collegiate Farm Bureau plan to distribute 100 free trees at their pop-up park, courtesy of the local Soil and Water Conservation District office. Other planned park themes will emphasize hands-on demonstrations in composting, horticulture, and livestock management. This event is open to the public.

Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
Mandy Way's avatar
Mandy Way

Way Farms

Farm Labor Resources
I appreciate the benefit of having a strong voice in my corner. The extras that are included in membership are wonderful, but I'm a member because of the positive impact to my local and state agricultural communities.
Ernie Welch's avatar
Ernie Welch

Van Wert County Farm Bureau

Strong communities
I see the value and need to be engaged in the community I live in, to be a part of the decision-making process and to volunteer with organizations that help make our community better.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

Leadership development
Farm Bureau involvement has taught me how to grow my professional and leadership experience outside of the workforce and how to do that in a community-centric way.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

Young Ag Professionals program
With not growing up on a farm, I’d say I was a late bloomer to agriculture. I feel so fortunate that I found the agriculture industry. There are so many opportunities for growth.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

Growing our Generation
Knowing that horticulture is under the agriculture umbrella and having Farm Bureau supporting horticulture like it does the rest of ag is very important.
Jared Hughes's avatar
Jared Hughes

Groovy Plants Ranch

Groovy Plants Ranch
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.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
So many of the issues that OFBF and its members are advocating for are important to all Ohioans. I look at OFBF as an agricultural watchdog advocating for farmers and rural communities across Ohio.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

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