Working for one of the largest agricultural businesses in the world might seem like an unlikely career for a fourth generation city girl, but if you’ve ever talked to Janice Person you know it makes perfect sense. At her core, Janice is a storyteller and has built a career telling farmers’ stories and helping them tell their own story. In her current role as online engagement director at Monsanto, Janice uses storytelling to help people in online spaces better understand agriculture.
While he describes his career path as meandering, Andy Vance’s experiences as an agricultural broadcaster, business owner and writer have given him a unique perspective on consumer engagement in agriculture. In his current role as account director at Penton, Andy uses these experiences to work with agricultural companies on advertising and marketing strategies. Beyond this, he is also a popular keynote speaker, trainer and consultant for agricultural organizations.
Typically, people who grew up farming describe their experiences with memories of harvesting grains or caring for newborn animals, but Mark Jewell’s experience in agriculture was a little different. Mark grew up working every day in chest waders and a boat on his family’s leech operation. This early entrepreneurial experience with fishing bait operation combined with exposure to leadership training and speaking through FFA led Mark on a journey of personal growth rooted in agriculture.
After growing up on a small farm in Ohio, Susan Crowell wanted to leave rural life for the bright lights and big city. Shortly after college, her career led her right back to agriculture. Susan has been the editor of Farm and Dairy since 1989, where she has been telling agriculture’s story by providing news and information to farmers of the region.
When Hannah Thompson-Weeman turned 8 years old, a family friend gave her a Brown Swiss heifer named Joy to show in 4-H. From that day, she was hooked. Her passion for dairy cows and communications grew as she participated in 4-H, dairy judging teams and the FFA Agricultural Communication Career Development Event. Those experiences led her to two degrees from the agricultural communication program at Ohio State and now, just a few years later, she is the Vice President of Communications at the Animal Agriculture Alliance.
Growing up as the fifth generation on her family’s farm instilled the morals, ambition and passion that led Lyndsey Murphy to become an entrepreneur. Starting her business, The Hive, as a place to bring people together around food and agriculture has been a journey from Mechanicsburg, Ohio to Washington, D.C., and back.
Natalina Sents has been to more than 70 farms and seen at least 30 different types of agriculture! The Why I Farm Road Trip blogger has spent the last six months getting to know farmers across the country, learning and sharing their stories, and laughing and crying with them as they tell her those stories. She has six months left to go, but shares what her journey has been like so far.
A photo of dirty barn boots next to a nice pair of heels is a small image on her website about page, but is a powerful visual representation of Michele Payn’s career. She is an entrepreneur, author, farmer, mother, innovator and science enthusiast, just to name a few of the shoes she fills. As the founder of Cause Matters Corp., a company that aims to connect people to their food from gate to plate, she works hard to address food myths and connect people to their food. Michele also started the #AgChat and #FoodChat Twitter chats that have developed into international programs, a foundation and thriving online communities.
In this episode of The Story of Agriculture Podcast, guest host Lexi Marek, Iowa State student in public service and administration in agriculture and journalism, interviews Co-Founder of Herdmark Media, Inc., Marlene Eick.
Ivory Harlow and her husband knew that the next step in their life, after serving in the U.S. Air Force, was to farm. They searched for the best places in the country to start a farm, and when they drove into the hills of southern Ohio they knew they were home. After finding the perfect farm, with a beautiful 100-year-old red barn built from American chestnut, they began laying the groundwork for Dickie Bird Farms. Initially a direct marketing vegetable and egg and poultry operation, new opportunities led the farm towards transition to the meat goat and forage operation they are today.
How do you balance being a mom, full time ag communication professor, part time freelance photographer, farmer and active advocate for agriculture? For Dr. Emily Buck, it is all about priorities. After her family and students, she finds time to prioritize her advocacy work because the health of the industry impacts her career as a professor, her family's farm and her community. Listen in on a conversation with Dr. Buck as she talks us through what it’s like to balance so many roles that are all important to her.
In this episode of The Story of Agriculture Podcast, guest host Lea Kimley, Ohio State student in agricultural communication, interviews Co-Founder and Creative Lead of Herdmark Media, Inc., B.J. Eick.