By Molly Zentz
Courtney Rude Lamie’s daily life isn’t what most people picture when they visualize a career in agriculture. She works in downtown Indianapolis and spends her days strategizing and executing marketing plans — from event planning to product launches and media tours.
The difference between Rude Lamie’s career in marketing and any other marketing executive is that Blank Page Marketing, known as BLNKPG, the company she works for as an account manager, is an all-agriculture marketing agency. She works with agribusinesses of all kinds on a daily basis to help them achieve their business goals through marketing and communications.
Rude Lamie’s journey to a career in agriculture came as a bit of a surprise, considering she grew up in Indianapolis. “I grew up right in the middle of Indianapolis,” she says. “But through middle school, I was involved in Marion County 4-H. My grandparents farmed in Tipton County, and my mother worked in agriculture for a number of years.”
But it wasn’t until she arrived at Purdue University that she decided to focus her career on agriculture. She earned a bachelor’s degree in animal science from Purdue and credits some of her future direction to her internships.
“My first internship in college was at Indiana Farm Bureau, working on bridging consumer expectations with farmer perspectives at the Indiana State Fair,” Rude Lamie says. “What better person to do that than the ag-educated kid that grew up 20 blocks from the fairgrounds!”
Her love for science and understanding complex ideas has kept her interested in agriculture. In her position at BLNKPG, she says farmers are more than just clients. “The farmers I work with aren’t just a target audience; they’re my friends and family,” she says. “If I can make their lives more efficient or profitable through the information I create and share, then that’s a personal and professional accomplishment to me.”
Just as in all areas of agriculture, the ag communications industry is always changing. Rude Lamie says with all the change, flexibility is key. “There’s always something new and different in this industry,” she says. “Everyone is affected differently by these changes, so being adaptive is crucial in agriculture and ag communications.”
As a woman in a predominantly male industry and as a young professional, she says there are times when others have questioned her credibility. “I find myself in many rooms where I am the youngest person, or the only woman, or the least ‘ag,’” she explains. “But so far I have never been the least intelligent or the least hardworking person in the room, so I’ve kept my credibility intact.”
Rude Lamie remains connected with the agriculture industry outside of work by being involved with organizations like Indiana Farm Bureau. She serves on the Young Farmer and Ag Professionals committee representing District 6.
Zentz is a senior public relations manager at Indiana Farm Bureau Inc. This article is part of an ongoing series about the role of women in agriculture today.