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Leaders in Action

IFB’s leadership development program now accepting applications

—Story & Photos
By Mindy Reef
Public Relations Team

The application for period is open for the 2014 class of Leaders in Action, IFB’s leadership development program.

The program is for individuals who want to enhance their leadership skills, specifically becoming more effective at the local, state or national levels in both volunteer and elected positions.

The first two meetings for the 2014 program are in northern Indiana, though participants may come from anywhere in the state.

  • Session 1: Engaging Local Government, Saturday, Feb. 22, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. EST, Fulton County area (exact location TBD).
  • Session 2: Self-Leadership, Saturday, April 12, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. EDT, St. Joseph County area (exact location TBD).
  • Session 3: Communications, Saturday, May 31, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. EDT, Indiana Farm Bureau home office.
  • Session 4: Farm Bureau History and Opportunities, Friday/Saturday, Aug. 8-9, 6:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. EDT, Indiana Farm Bureau home office.
  • Session 5: Washington, D.C., trip, Sept. 8-10, Applications must be submitted by Dec. 2. Space is limited and acceptance will be based on application review.

The cost is $200 per person for Farm Bureau members and $250 per person for non-members. Hotel rooms are provided only when meeting in Indianapolis and in Washington, D.C. Some meals in D.C. will not be covered. Some county Farm Bureaus may choose to pay for participants.

For more information, contact your regional manager or Julie Volbers-Klarich, 317-692-8011, Applications and additional information are also available online at under the “Programs” menu.

The 2013 Leaders in Action class traveled to Washington, D.C., Sept. 9-11. This photo was taken on the roof of the building the American Farm Bureau Federation is housed in. From left to right: Jennifer Gish, IFB regional manager; Matt Turner, Gibson County; Sarah Jordan, Ripley County; Bruce Ungethiem, Vanderburgh County; Miranda Ulery, Harrison County; Kyle Cline, IFB government relations staff; Eric Lindauer, Spencer County; C.J. Fleenor, Orange County; Matt Schenk, Posey County; Megan Ritter, IFB government relations staff; Michael Baird, Washington County; Carla Schenk, Posey County; Deidra Gottbrath, Washington County; Chris Fenner, IFB staff; Luke Naville, Floyd County and Seth Harden, IFB staff.

LiA program members who are constituents of Rep. Larry Bucshon met in his office to talk about the farm bill, ag labor and water infrastructure. From left, Megan Ritter (from behind), Matt Turner, Eric Lindauer and Matt Schenk listen as Bucshon (center) shares his views on those Farm Bureau issues.

LiA members spent their first day in Washington at the AFBF offices learning about issues. Cody Lyon (at podium), AFBF’s director of grassroots/political advocacy, led an exercise on a fictional bill that would offer free meals once a month to taxpayers. Matt Turner (left) sponsored the bill; Michael Baird, Sarah Jordan and Deidra Gottbrath served on the committee. The exercise shows how a bill can change from its introduction to its passage (or failure).

Senators Joe Donnelly and Dan Coats both met with the LiA program class. Above, Donnelly shares his insights on the Senate version of the farm bill and what he thinks it will take for the House to get a bill passed.
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