Women’s Agricultural Leadership Conference explores impact of change

The 2019 Women’s Agricultural Leadership Conference will examine how agriculture is evolving and how diversity may change the future. Coordinated by Minnesota District 11 Agri-Women, this annual conference will be held Wednesday, April 10, 2019, at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chaska.

The day-long event will offer presentations on a wide variety of topics, including agriculture policy, advocacy, technology, professional development, and marketing. Now in its 21st year, the Women’s Ag Leadership Conference has become known for its quality programming, leadership development, and networking.

“Our theme this year is Changing the Agscape and we’ll explore what’s driving change in the ag industry and how we can better prepare to respond to those changes,” said conference co-founder Doris Mold. “Whether your agriculture career is on the farm or in the office, anticipating change is an asset to success.”

Online registration is now open at www.womensagleadership.org. Interested attendees do not need to work in the field of agriculture

Conference sessions include:

  • Agriculture is Evolving, How Could Diversity Change the Future?
    • Jeneen Abrams, Plant Research Scientist, Purdue University, National President, MANRRS
  • Peggy Gulick, Director of Digital Transformation/Global Manufacturing, AGCO
  • Kristine Thompson, Director of Business Integration, CHS Inc.
  • Kathleen Skiba, Co-Owner, Diamond S Farm
  • Climbing the Mountain When You are Afraid of Heights
  • Libby Stennes, Partner, Steptoe & Johnson LLP
  • Cultivating Resiliency for Women in Agriculture
    • Shauna Reitmeier, CEO, Northwestern Mental Health Center
  • From City to Farm: My Story Into Agriculture
    • Alexis Murillo, Public Speaker
  • Minnesota Ag in the Classroom
  • Suzanne Keri Sidle, Education Specialist, MN Ag in the Classroom
  • Rachel Gray, Regional Specialist, MN Ag in the Classroom
  • Wanda Patsche, Regional Specialist, MN Ag in the Classroom
  • Navigating Career Change
  • Jocelyn Schlichting Hicks, Farmer, Schlichting Farms Inc.
  • Cindy Sorensen, Founder and CEO, The Grocery Group
  • Stacy Vossberg, Vice President of Innovation, Insignia Systems
    • Moderator: Amanda Durow, Senior Credit Officer, CoBank
  • Plants: What Else Can They Do? 
  •  Dr. Jeneen Abrams, Plant Research Scientist, Purdue University, National President, MANRRS
  • Rural Policy: From Your Community to the Farm Bill
  • Dave Ladd, President, RDL & Associates, LLC
  • Julie Tesch, President & CEO, Center for Rural Policy & Development
  • Facilitator: Megan Roberts, Extension Educator – Agricultural Business Management, U of MN Extension
  • Shifting Extension Priorities for the Evolving Needs of Minnesota Produce Farmers
    • Annie Klodd, Assistant Extension Professor – Fruit and Vegetable Production, U of MN Extension
    • Session to also feature a produce farmer
  • Sustainability Challenges and Opportunities
    • Jill Wheeler, Head of Sustainable Productivity, Syngenta – North America
  • Wellness, Taking Care of You
    • Terri Mattson, Founder beginning Today Lifestyle Wellness, LLC

 Minnesota Agriculture Commissioner Thom Petersen will recognize outstanding mentors in agriculture during the 17th Annual Mentorship Awards presentation. The mentoring awards and mentoring program have become one of the hallmarks of the Women’s Agricultural Leadership Program.

The conference begins with registration check-in at 8 a.m. The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum is located at 3675 Arboretum Drive, Chaska.

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