May 5, 2006
Potential leaders of all ages have two distinct programs and two outstanding opportunities to develop their skills through Texas Farm Bureau leadership development programs.
Applications for AgLead Class 8TFB's premier, most intensive agricultural programare due Aug. 31, as are applications for Texas Farm Bureau's newest leadership program, FarmLead.
"FarmLead is designed for mature farmers and ranchers who want to improve themselves and the agricultural industry," said TFB Organization Programs Director Si Cook. "Both AgLead and FarmLead were developed to allow leaders to apply their skills anywherewithin Farm Bureau, on the local school board, county or city government, or even at the state and national levels."
AgLead, designed for the young farmer and rancher, was star-ted in 1992 and has provided a great track record of leadership. Many graduates of the program have gone on to leadership positions in both Farm Bureau and the agriculture industry.
According to Cook, the TFB Board of Directors, seeing the success of AgLead, wanted to develop a similar program for farmers and ranchers over 40. The result: FarmLead.
"In both of these situations, we're going to introduce the participants to people and concepts that are somewhat different than what they're used to," Cook said. "We're going to ask them to step out of their comfort zone to develop knowledge and skills that are invaluable to them and their industry."
Both AgLead and FarmLead focus on improving the personal and professional leadership skills of farmers and ranchers across the state.
The AgLead curriculum involves nine separate meetings over the course of two yearsfive in Texas, three out of state, and one international.
FarmLead's 18-month curriculum focuses on five separate multi-day meetings: two in Texas, one in the Midwest, one in Washington, D.C., and one in California.
Both FarmLead and AgLead participants will have the opportunity to view and learn about the latest techniques and technologies being used in all phases of agriculture. Participants will view agriculture from the farm to the factory, where agricultural products are processed, packaged and marketed.
In addition, participants in both programs will learn how to effectively influence the political and regulatory processes by meeting face-to-face with decision makers in both Austin and Washington.
Learning to be a more effective communicator is a vital part of both programs.
AgLead Class 8 candidates must be under 25 years of age and not more than 40 years of age as of Sept. 1, 2006, and must derive a major portion of their income from production agriculture.
FarmLead candidates must be over 40 years of age as of Sept. 1, 2006. AgLead graduates are not eligible for this program. Applicants don't have to be full-time producers to be eligible, but full-time producers, State Advisory Committee Members and County Farm Bureau Board members will be given preference.
Candidates for both AgLead and FarmLead must be a Texas Farm Bureau member at time of application and throughout the program, if selected.
Applications for both programs must be in the Waco office by Aug. 31, 2006. Class selection for both programs will be announced in late September or early October. Both classes will start in November.
More details will be available in county FB offices in late May. For more information contact Si Cook, P.O. Box 2689, Waco, Tex. 76702; phone 254-751-2286; email scook @txfb.org; or visit the Texas Farm Bureau website at www.txfb.org.