Date(s) - September 13, 2022
8:00 pm - 9:00 pm


American Farm Bureau is hosting the first in a series of five competitive event training Zooms Tuesday, Sept. 13 at 8 p.m. This training will specifically focus on the overall Discussion Meet competition and will host two past competitors and a former state coordinator to discuss their experience and tips for success. Joining us will be Malarie Thompson, 2022 AFBF Discussion Meet winner, Sean Arians, 2015 AFBF Discussion Meet winner and Ron Saacke, Administrative Vice President for Washington Farm Bureau.


Malarie Thompson: Malarie and her husband, Will, manage a cow-calf operation and work with neighboring farms to sale Verified All-Natural GAP Certified truckloads of feeder calves. Malarie was born and raised in Bakersfield, California and graduated from California State University, Fresno with a degree in animal science. After moving to North Carolina for a job in the dairy industry, she went on to receive her graduate degree in agricultural education. Malarie worked for Alltech as a sales rep for six years and currently works for Maryland and Virginia Milk Producers as a member services and sustainability representative.

Sean Arians: With nearly 20 years of experience in varying ag business sectors, Sean brings a unique perspective to the challenges facing farmers today. Not only has he worked directly with farmers helping them adopt new technologies, but he is also an active farmer himself – putting his money where his mouth is. Sean is passionate about agronomy, ag tech, sustainability and people – he’s never met a stranger. He currently is grower direct business-lead with Advanced Agrilytics, as well as the founder of GrainCoat, a farmer-focused grain marketing app.

Ron Saacke: Ron is new to Washington Farm Bureau, but he spent the last 16 years working with the Young Farmers Program in Virginia, where he oversaw YF&R, Women’s Leadership and their state Farm Bureau competitive events. He has a degree in agribusiness & marketing from Virginia Tech and enjoys living vicariously through many successful YF&R members he has worked with over the years.

This Zoom training series is intended to help competitors prepare for the state and national Achievement Award, Discussion Meet and Excellence in Agriculture competitions.