The American Farm Bureau Federation recently selected an outstanding group of young farmer and rancher leaders as the organization’s 11th Partners in Advocacy Leadership class. AFBF designed PAL to help agricultural leaders accelerate their engagement abilities and solidify their roles as advocates for agriculture.
“Advocating for agricultural issues benefits rural communities at the local, state and national levels,” said AFBF President Zippy Duvall. “Today, more than ever before, it’s critical for farmers and ranchers to step forward with confidence as they promote issues important to those in the farm-to-consumer food chain.”
Members of PAL Class 11 are:
- Heather Barnes, North Carolina
- Seth Earl, Michigan
- Jason Fellows, Idaho
- Laura Haffner, Kansas
- Rachel Harmann, Wisconsin
- Eileen Jensen, New York
- Russ Kohler, Utah
- Ben Menges, Arizona
- Megan Richner, Missouri
- Dana Stewart, Arkansas
PAL training involves four learning modules designed to develop specific advocacy skills while exploring components of leadership and its theories and philosophies. The modules build on one another over the two years of the program and include intense, in-person, hands-on training. The PAL program focuses on taking farmers and ranchers, age 30 to 45, who have already begun their personal development journey and moving them to the next level.
PAL graduates emerge with the experience and confidence—in everything from legislative policy making and issues management to social media and media relations—to effectively engage all critical stakeholders.
“Life as you know it will change from your experience of being a PAL. It is something that equips you, with networking, with relationships, with knowledge and experiences that will change your life,” said Adam Hinton, PAL Class 7
The program is sponsored by AFBF, Farm Credit and Bayer CropScience.