Beth Archer, director of the Indiana Ag leadership Institute, has a right to be proud. Many of the graduates of the previous 13 classes of the Institute could fit into a 'who's who of Indiana Agriculture.' Those in class 14 are following closely in their footsteps.
The Institute, based today near Danville, Ind., concentrates on an extensive leadership training program. About 30 hand-selected individuals complete a two-year course, including travel to Washington D.C. and overseas, plus plenty of activities, tours and discussions with key industry and government leaders in Indiana. Class 14 is still in their first year of the program.
Here's just a bit of namedropping- an update on some of the activities of previous graduates and current enrollees of thee Institute. Judge for yourself how well this program has zeroed in on top leaders, and then helped those people become even more adept at providing leadership in various facets of Indiana agriculture.
David Hardin, class 12- This hog producer from Hendricks County was recently honored as a Distinguished Animal Science Alumni. The honor was bestowed by the Purdue University Department of Animal Sciences.
David Howell, class 1- Howell was re-elected as vice president of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council Board,. It's the group that oversees collection and distribution of corn checkoff money in Indiana. Howell and his wife, Mary, Middletown, were also named Indiana Prairie Farmer/ Purdue University College of Agriculture Master Farmers in 2010.
Alan Kemper, class 1- This Tippecanoe County grain producer was recently elected president of the American Soybean Association. He has already served as president of the National Corn Growers Association, co-hosted the 2001 Farm Progress Show and was named a Master Farmer in 1992.
Eric Schilling, class 12- He just assumed a new role with Elanco Animal Health, based at Greenfield. Schilling is now the Business-to-Business manager for beef at the animal health company.
Leah Buyer, class 14, was named as winner of the prestigious Indiana Farm Bureau Young Farmer Discussion Meet. She competed on the national level in this contest at the National Farm Bureau Convention in Atlanta this week.
Jane Ade Stevens, class 1- She was just named executive director of three Indiana commodity groups, including the Indiana Soybean Alliance, the Indiana Corn Marketing Council and the Indiana Corn Growers Association.
Mike, class 13, and Raylee, class 14, Honeycutt- They were finalists in Indiana Farm Bureau's Young Farmer Excellence in Agriculture Award program this past year.