Farm Progress

Registration begins for the 2018 Women in Agriculture and Small Business Conference

Two-day conference focuses on managing risk

Leilana McKindra

July 11, 2018

3 Min Read
Katy Sutton and father Freddy Harkey visit while she tends to her sheep. Oklahoma to host Women in Agriculture and Small Business Conference, Aug. 9-10, at Oklahoma City.

Producers and business owners should plan now to attend the 2018 Oklahoma Statewide Women in Agriculture and Small Business Conference, Aug. 9-10, in Oklahoma City.  

“The focus of the two-day conference is to assist women and producers in successfully managing risk for their agricultural enterprises or small businesses,” said Sara Siems, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension assistant specialist and conference coordinator. “The conference offers timely information to empower women in their farm, ranch and business endeavors.” 

Keynote speakers

Keynote speakers for the popular two-day event include journalist Rebecca Long Chaney, Meat Scientist and blogger, Janeal Yancey, and training and Development Specialist Marcy Luter. 

An award-winning writer with more than 1,000 articles published, Chaney is the author of the book, “A Peek at the Past and a Preview of the Future,” which traces the 150-year history of the Ayrshire and Brown Swiss dairy cattle breeds in Maryland.  

Luter, the management development training coordinator at Meridian Technology Center, is a certified facilitator and trainer for FranklinCovey, Gallup’s StrengthsQuest assessment and Myers Briggs Type Indicator.  

Currently a meat scientist at the University of Arkansas, Yancey launched the blog, “Mom at the Meat Counter” in 2011 after talking with other mothers about the meat industry.

Conference highlights

Other conference highlights will include four educational tracks: Agricultural production, alternative enterprises, business and finance, and beginning farmer. 

Exhibitors will be on hand providing helpful resources designed to enhance attendees’ farming or small business efforts, while vendors will be selling their Made in Oklahoma products. 

There also will be an optional conference social and needle felting craft activity during which participants will create a farm scene using dyed alpaca and sheep wool. 

“I have attended and helped to coordinate the Oklahoma Women in Ag Conference since returning to our family farm over 10 years ago. I am always amazed by the women who feel supported, enlightened and empowered by the conference in ways they haven’t been at other meetings,” said Karen Eifert-Jones, a producer near Waukomis, Oklahoma. “The planning committee works hard to ensure we have a mix of quality programming and socialization activities. This year, I am most excited about our evening social activity. I’m hoping I’ll meet a lot of new friends there.” 

Conference details

This year’s conference will take place at a new location, the Embassy Suites Oklahoma City-Downtown/Medical Center, 741 N. Phillips Avenue. 

Registration before Aug. 3 is $50 and $25 for college-aged students and younger, while anyone registering after that date will pay $60 or $35, respectively. There is an additional $20 charge for the optional conference social and craft activity. 

 All meals and refreshments are included in the registration fee. 

For more information about the conference or to register for the event, visit  

“Our goal is to make sure participants feel like the conference is well worth their time and I think past evaluations indicate we’ve been doing a good job so far,” Siems said. “There’s something for everyone at this conference so I encourage anyone with an interest in agriculture or small business to join us.”

About the Author(s)

Leilana McKindra

Communications Specialist, Oklahoma State University

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