FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
POCATELLO – Three Idaho Farm Bureau Federation members have been chosen to represent their fellow agricultural producers in Idaho and around the nation on American Farm Bureau Federation committees.
AFBF represents farmers and ranchers across the United States and works collectively with the individual state Farm Bureau organizations to protect producers’ rights as well as educate people about agriculture and promote the industry.
Alan Clark, a rancher and farmer from Rigby, was selected to serve a two-year term on AFBF’s Promotion and Education Committee. The 10-member committee is tasked with helping to promote agriculture as well as educate consumers about where their food comes from and how it is produced.
Kyle and Jessica Wade of Downey, who have a custom cattle grazing, feeding and calving operation, were selected to serve a two-year term on AFBF’s Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee. That 16-member committee is responsible for planning YF&R programs and events.
The AFBF and Idaho Farm Bureau Federation YF&R programs are designed to help develop the next generation of leaders in the ag industry by offering them opportunities to network and sharpen their public speaking and problem solving skills during competitions and other events.
IFBF President Bryan Searle, a farmer from Shelley, said he is confident the Wades and Clark will perform their committee duties well.
“They are committed to Farm Bureau; it’s in their blood,” he said. “They are very capable individuals and they are what Farm Bureau stands for and is all about. They will represent Idaho and the nation well in those positions.”
Clark, a fifth-generation farmer and rancher, has 500 beef cows and farms 1,500 acres of hay, barley and wheat.
He said he is excited to be on AFBF’s P&E committee.
“It’s super important to promote agriculture and educate people about the industry and where their food comes from,” he said. “If we as farmers and ranchers don’t tell our story and promote our industry, people who don’t know anything about agriculture will tell the story and they will get it wrong.”
Clark also serves as chairman of IFBF’s Promotion & Education Committee, which is entering its second year.
“I hope to take what I learn from the AFBF P&E committee and use that to help our program succeed,” he said.
Jessica Wade said one of her and Kyle’s main goals is to help bridge the gap between FFA membership and Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers and Ranchers program.
FFA members are in high school, while Farm Bureau’s YF&R program is open to agricultural producers between the ages of 18 and 35.
A lot of people who get involved in the YF&R program don’t do so until they are about 30 years old and that “doesn’t give them very much time to be in the YF&R program and gain leadership skills,” Jessica Wade said.
The Wades’ goal is to reach out to more FFA members to let them know this opportunity is available to them immediately, she said.
“We have benefited in a big way from Idaho Farm Bureau’s YF&R program,” she said. “We have changed our operation because of things we learned through the program and it’s helped us in so many ways. We want people to be able to experience that starting from age 18.”
Both the Wades and Clark will start their committee positions in March.
“Continuing to engage with consumers to build trust and share the story of agriculture is an important part of national program committee work …,” AFBF President Zippy Duvall said in a statement announcing the new committee members. “We applaud the commitment of these newly appointed Farm Bureau members.”
IFBF CEO Zak Miller, a farmer from Rigby, said Idaho grows excellent crops and produces fantastic people.
“Idaho may be famous for our potatoes but it’s the people that make our products famous and we are excited to share more of them with the nation,” he said.
Alan Clark, shown here with his wife, Sara, and their children – Kailynn, Zoey, Phoebe and Lila – has been selected to serve a two-year term on American Farm Bureau Federation’s Promotion and Education Committee.
Idaho Farm Bureau Federation photo
Kyle and Jessica Wade, shown here with their son, Porter, have been selected to serve two-year terms on American Farm Bureau Federation’s Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee.