The participants of the 2015 class of the NCGA DuPont New Leaders Program kicked off their involvement this week in Des Moines, where they learned how to better tell their ag story and got a deeper education in industry involvement. “I was really happy to meet this dedicated group of growers new to industry involvement,” said National Corn Growers Association First Vice President Rob Elliott, an Illinois grower who attended the session and was able to spend time getting to know the growers. “These men and women are especially eager to help move American agriculture forward and communicate its importance to those who are removed from farming by a few generations. I look forward to seeing them get more engaged in leadership – and I thank DuPont for its strong support of this program.”
In the program, the participants learned how to enhance communications depending on personality traits, used improv techniques to learn to communicate better, mastered top social media tools and learned the importance of conversation and dialogue from representatives of the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance. They also learned about the work of sponsoring organizations NCGA and DuPont.
In July, they will travel to Wilmington, Delaware, and Washington, D.C., as the program takes more of a policy-oriented focus. They will attend NCGA’s action team meetings and Corn Congress sessions, as well as take part in Capitol Hill visits with their state delegations. In the meantime, they have a myriad of opportunities to get involved at the state and national level as effective advocates for American agriculture.
Those who came to the first session were 32 participants from 16 states: Brandon Dillard, Alabama; John Lee, Arkansas; Alex Harrell, Georgia; Jason and Kate Danner, Illinois; Colton and Jill Ringel and Christopher and Ashley Hudson, Indiana; Kyle and Jenna Ramsey and Casey and Katie Schleusner, Iowa; Lowell and Krystale Neitzel, Kansas; Michael and Megan Buckman, Kentucky; Jason McConnachie and Tony Kubik, Michigan; Brian and Secely Lehman, Missouri; David and Jana Jobman, Nebraska; Michael Howlett and Carly Metzger, New York; Cody Sloan, Oklahoma; Thomas DuRant, South Carolina; Derek Giffin, Tennessee; and Jordan and Ashley Pool and Cole and Kyla Hamilton, Texas.