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Entries for Kansas Master Farm Families from the public should be sent to local Extension offices.

Jennifer M. Latzke, Editor

April 21, 2023

2 Min Read
Kansas Master Farmers and Master Farm Homemakers Class of 2022
'MASTERS' CLASS OF 2022: The Kansas Master Farmers and Master Farm Homemakers Class of 2022 were recognized at a banquet in their honor March 24, in Manhattan, Kan. The class includes: Mark (left) and Marcia Knudson, Hiawatha; Rick and Connie Thompson, Kincaid; Richard and Anita Poland, Isabel; Philip and Jane Halling, Lancaster; David Pearson and Donna Pearson McClish, Wichita; and Todd and Charlene Sheppard, Olsburg. Nominations for the Class of 2023 Kansas Master Farm Families will be accepted until May 8. Contact your local Extension office for details. Jennifer M. Latzke

Kansas Farmer magazine and Kansas State University Research and Extension are calling on the Kansas agriculture community to nominate families now for the Kansas Master Farm Family Class of 2023.

The Kansas Master Farm Family award, formerly the Kansas Master Farmer and Master Farm Homemaker award, recognizes outstanding farm and ranch families who have provided leadership in their communities, volunteer efforts with Extension, and have achieved in their chosen field of agriculture on the local, state or national stage.

To expand participation across the state, the organizers encourage nominations from the community at large. These names should be directed to the local Extension county district where the nominee resides. You can find a map and contacts for Extension county and district offices at ksre.k-state.edu/about/statewide-locations.html. Nominators can also simply call the local Extension agent of the community where the nominee resides and provide their name.

From those lists of potential nominees, local Extension boards will then choose which family from their county or district they will forward on to the state selection committee for final consideration. These county or district nominees will then fill out the online Kansas Master Farm Family nomination form with more detailed information about their family and business activities. The final deadline for those nominations is May 8.

Selection criteria includes the growth of the farm or ranch business and operation through sound planning, with a demonstrated effort for stewardship, sound decision-making and planned growth over the years. Involvement in the community through leadership roles at the local, county, state or national level is also considered. That can include leadership in school, church, community, Extension, farm organizations and other charitable efforts over their lifetime.

“I’m sure you have many successful farm and ranch families who are great local community leaders,” says Daryl Buchholz, associate director emeritus-Cooperative Extension, and secretary of the Kansas Master Farmers Association and Kansas Master Farm Homemakers Guild. The Kansas Master Farm Family award shows the value of Extension at the local level to inspire farm and ranch families to lead in their communities and across the state, he adds.

“Don’t miss this chance to recognize and honor your local farm and ranch families who have that long record of being great farmers and ranchers, Extension supporters, and have been and continue to be a positive influence in your community and beyond,” Buchholz says.

Additional support for the Kansas Master Farm Family award is provided by the Kansas Farm Bureau, Frontier Farm Credit/American AgCredit and the Kansas State Fair Board.

If you have questions, contact Buchholz at [email protected], or at 785-587-4913; or Sue Robinson at [email protected] or 785-532-5820.

About the Author(s)

Jennifer M. Latzke

Editor, Kansas Farmer

Through all her travels, Jennifer M. Latzke knows that there is no place like Kansas.

Jennifer grew up on her family’s multigenerational registered Angus seedstock ranch and diversified farm just north of Woodbine, Kan., about 30 minutes south of Junction City on the edge of the Kansas Flint Hills. Rock Springs Ranch State 4-H Center was in her family’s backyard.

While at Kansas State University, Jennifer was a member of the Sigma Kappa Sorority and a national officer for the Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. She graduated in May 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural communications and a minor in animal science. In August 2000 Jennifer started her 20-year agricultural writing career in Dodge City, Kan., on the far southwest corner of the state.

She’s traveled across the U.S. writing on wheat, sorghum, corn, cotton, dairy and beef stories as well as breaking news and policy at the local, state and national levels. Latzke has traveled across Mexico and South America with the U.S. Wheat Associates and toured Vietnam as a member of KARL Class X. She’s traveled to Argentina as one of 10 IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism. And she was part of a delegation of AAEA: The Ag Communicators Network members invited to Cuba.

Jennifer’s an award-winning writer, columnist, and podcaster, recognized by the Kansas Professional Communicators, Kansas Press Association, the National Federation of Presswomen, Livestock Publications Council, and AAEA. In 2019, Jennifer reached the pinnacle of achievements, earning the title of “Writer of Merit” from AAEA.

Trips and accolades are lovely, but Jennifer says she is happiest on the road talking to farmers and ranchers and gathering stories and photos to share with readers.

“It’s an honor and a great responsibility to be able to tell someone’s story and bring them recognition for their work on the land,” Jennifer says. “But my role is also evolving to help our more urban neighbors understand the issues our Kansas farmers face in bringing the food and fiber to their store shelves.”

She spends her time gardening, crafting, watching K-State football, and cheering on her nephews and niece in their 4-H projects. She can be found on Twitter at @Latzke.

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