• Being Bold, Dreaming Big and FarmHer

August 01, 2019 5 Comments

Just a few short years ago, FarmHer was the start of a dream and a simple photography project.  I was looking to create something, do something good for others and make something for myself. I set out with dreams as far as the horizon line to show the world that women are an important part of agriculture.  To show the world the beauty that women bring to agriculture and really give a good look at where our food comes from.  My kids were very young at the time so I would carve out little bits of time, at night and on the weekends mostly to photograph women right here in my home state of Iowa.  I created a simple website, started a blog to share the images and stories and opened up social media pages and hit the go button.  Where that project has taken us, I could have never guessed.  In those first few months and years as I realized the need and desire for #FarmHer was greater than I could have guessed, I started casting a wide net.  I loaded up my calendar with art shows filled with photographs, keynote speaking, creating and selling merchandise, attending events, networking like a crazy woman and even launched our own event for young women in ag.  I was trying to figure out how this little dream of mine could really grow legs and eventually become established and sustainable as an organization, shining a light on women.  Most of those areas grew and my time spent traveling and need for help grew too.  Then when I least expected it, the opportunity to launch a national cable television show literally just landed in my lap.  Knowing this was an opportunity I couldn’t turn away from, I opened my arms a little wider and ran even faster. 

 

Today we are six years down what I have come to trust will be a long road.  A road filled with exciting things to see, great stops along the way and the most genuine people I could ever imagine on farms lining the path.  A long road that will likely have its share of twists, turns, and potholes….but I’m working on filling those potholes with flowers!  Last fall one of my team members, Erin gave me a few gentle nudges to apply for the opportunity to join an elite group of business owners in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program.  Though I didn’t really think I needed to go through a business class I went ahead and applied, interviewed and to my surprise, I got in!  It required me to commit quite a bit of time during one of the busiest times of my year so I was pretty apprehensive about it and how much good it would actually do.  On day one, within the first hour of the class, it was clear that I not only needed it, but I was sure this was right where I was supposed to be.  I spent the next twelve weeks diving deep into my business and myself.  Really looking at what I want to do, where I want to go and how I want to get there.  Assessing the business areas of merchandise, media, and events in which we have been operating and laying out the best path for us to move forward.  At the end of the class, the message was pretty clear - I love to share stories.  I love to celebrate strong, real, everyday women.  I love to shine a light on those women and I want to make sure the whole wide world knows just how amazing they are because in seeing someone else be amazing I think we see the amazing in ourselves, too.  So, I made some really, really tough decisions, leading us to our 20th and final Grow by FarmHer event this fall. The events have been a success but like all good things, it's time to bring them to a close.  Conversely, the easy decision I made was a renewed focus on our roots.   Sharing stories that celebrate women, families, food and rural life.  Spreading the story of agriculture and the FarmHers who are the heart of it far and wide.  Focusing on expanding our media to reach as many people as we can with our work.  So, if you’re already watching, listening, reading or joining in the journey, thank you.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Stick with us as I know the best is yet to come!




5 Responses

Eve Hauptmann
Eve Hauptmann

September 07, 2019

I am so thankful for the inspiration FarmHer provides to all readers and viewers. Never give up the good work!

Donise Raper
Donise Raper

August 03, 2019

Continue to love your show, whole family are big fans. Love your shows and farms you have visited out in Washington State, our oldest daughter is out on Whidbey. Hope you make it back to Spencer Fair soon !

Rosemary Vermillion
Rosemary Vermillion

August 02, 2019

I started watching your show in the second season and I tape your show whenever it is on.
I find your show inspiring and I appreciate your showing the women of agriculture and their stories that would not have been known except for your show.
I will continue to watch your show as long as they appear on television.
Always
Rosemary V

Kelly Larson
Kelly Larson

August 02, 2019

Greatly appreciate all you and your staff continue to do to educate others about farming and how involved women are in our operations! It’s inspirational and moving to be a part of. Thank you!

KB
KB

August 02, 2019

So proud of what you have done. KEEP GOING 🙌🏼

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