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The AGgregator

From the Field: Women Making Waves

Farm Credit’s National Contributions Program supports a diverse group of industry organizations, which sometimes find ways to collaborate to further support the industry. National Farmers Union and Annie’s Project did just that earlier this year at the Women’s Conference in Clearwater, Florida. The conference is an opportunity for farm and ranch women to learn to become stronger leaders in their communities and to learn more about the business side of farming and ranching. Together, these partners were able to shine a light on the great work that’s being done by women in agriculture.

Women Making Waves was this year’s theme, and attendees learned about the importance of women in agriculture and the leadership that they can provide to further the industry. Conference attendees received Annie’s Project curriculum, attended learning modules around succession planning and risk management, and engaged with guest speakers within the industry. Some notable speakers were Krysta Harding, the Deputy Secretary for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and Jane Alexander, who was the first woman to be named deputy secretary of agriculture in Pennsylvania.

From cattle to berries, young to retired, and beginning operations to veteran farmers, there was a wide range of agricultural diversity in the room, everyone eager to learn and build a network of support with those pursuing similar dreams: a successful and inclusive agriculture operation that can be passed down for generations to come.

Attendees shared their unique and inspiring stories about their journeys in agriculture. While many were just beginning and searching for opportunities to be involved, others have applied their knowledge on boards and paved the way for a thriving community where they work and live.

NFU Vice President Claudia Svarsdad encouraged the group to continue their work and take on leadership roles in their communities, saying, “When we don’t tap women as leaders, we miss out on the feminine genius.” Attendees left the conference energized to take on the opportunities and challenges in the year ahead and start making waves in their own communities.