Farm bureau plans virtual leadership event

Staff writer

The Ohio Farm Bureau Federation’s Young Ag Professionals Winter Leadership Experience will use a virtual platform to learn skills to further their impact in their communities, Farm Bureau and agriculture.
The theme for the 2021 Winter Leadership Experience, slated for Jan. 29-30, is “Cultivating Progress in Times of Change.” The event will offer participants the capability to connect with industry leaders and see several exciting new opportunities to engage and network with others from around the state.
“Just as in past years there will be a lot of great ideas and lessons to take away from the Winter Leadership Experience,” said Charlie and Casey Ellington, chairs of the Young Agricultural Professionals State Committee. “The engaging speakers and diverse sessions that are lined up will give everyone a chance to learn from others as they look to grow personally and professionally.”
The keynote speakers will be Rob Sharkey, host of the Shark Farmer Podcast, and inspirational speaker Matt Rush.
Sharkey, known in digital circles as The Shark Farmer, is not your average Illinois grain farmer. He’s a disrupter who is unwavering in his ability to directly address controversial topics. With the hog crash of ‘98 in the rearview mirror, a turn-key outfitting business thriving and a handful of acres demanding more time than is warranted, the only logical step was to launch a necessary – yet stupendously groundbreaking – podcast. His provocative style parallels a story-based structure, which resonates with thousands of weekly, global listeners.
Matt Rush has served as the former CEO of the New Mexico Farm Bureau and past president of the Ethos Leadership Group. He also previously has served on the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture board of directors. Rush is passionate about his values, helping others and is dedicated to “planting the seeds of greatness” by developing a strong, successful future for current and upcoming generations.
The event also will feature 20 breakout sessions covering topics from traditional farming, young professionals and niche and specialty growers to business management, consumer engagement and more.
Although the conference is coordinated by young ag professionals, the YAP State Committee recognizes this has been a year of learning for many farmers and is opening the 2021 Winter Leadership Experience to all Ohio Farm Bureau members.
Visit for more information and to register beginning Oct. 14.


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