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IFB implements several staffing changes

—By Kathleen M. Dutro
Public Relations Team

Indiana Farm Bureau is in the process of implementing a number of staffing changes, including the creation of new positions and a shift in focus for some existing positions.

The newest position is education specialist, which will be part of the organizational development team and has yet to be filled. Its creation is a direct result of IFB’s most recent strategic plan.

The person hired for the new position will have teaching experience and will be responsible for IFB’s current agriculture educational activities and for developing new programs. These include Ag in the Classroom, training for teachers and volunteers, Taste of Indiana Farms, food and nutrition programs, coordination of our exhibits including the Indiana State Fair and working with the Department of Education and the American Farm Bureau Federation.

Courtney Rude, who was formerly the outreach projects coordinator and oversaw IFB’s state fair presence, is now the program coordinator for the State Women’s Leadership Committee and State Young Farmer Committee and has the responsibility for providing the primary staff support for both of these committees. She has already assumed her WLC duties but will not take full responsibility for the Young Farmer Committee until the conclusion of the YF Conference at the end of January.

Chris Fenner, field services program director, has been responsible for the State Young Farmer Committee for several years, but this change was made to give him more time to focus on directing and working with the regional managers.

Tina Nunez will also be assuming additional responsibilities as the program assistant for education, Young Farmer Committee and State Women’s Leadership Committee.

The public policy team has also created a new position and made modifications to an existing one. The new position is value added projects coordinator. Bob White was hired to fill that slot and on Nov. 19 began his duties helping IFB members take advantage of the growing opportunities in retail agriculture. White has an extensive resume that includes acting as a consultant with the Indiana Cooperative Development Center and stints as Indiana director of USDA Rural Development and senior policy analyst for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. He also previously worked at IFB on natural resource and environmental issues.

Meanwhile, long-time IFB staff member Bob Cherry, who currently coordinates industry relations for IFB, will also coordinate IFB’s policy development process.

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