• Rising Up As A Woman Leader

June 01, 2020

Listen to the Podcast with Jennifer Sirangelo here.

Here I am with one of my favorite things growing up...barn kitties! 

I can still picture the green cover on my 4H book.  Inside were pages that represented hours of learning, sometimes frustration, excitement, and progress.  Inside that green cover, on carefully torn out notebook sheets were the stories of my projects.  They were the stories of the presentations, projects, animals and things we learned about as a 4H group.  Some pages held photographs that I had taken on my little pink 110 film camera.  Photographs and stories that were an important building block to the rest of my life.  Though I didn’t know it then, those early years spent in 4H were some pretty great ones.  They were years that I got to know kids outside of my school and regular social circles.  They were years where I learned to not only learned to take pictures, make a presentation, show a cat (yes, a cat), sew and bake, but also how to tell a story about all I had done and learned through those projects.  They were the years I spent in 4H. 

My grandpa and aunt riding on the combine back at the farm where my mom grew up.

My mom grew up on a working farm and 4H had been a big part of her youth too, so that is why she pushed us to join.  While we lived in the country, my parents didn’t farm so I wasn’t real sure where I would fit in.  We joined a group that was primarily based in town.  Some of the kids had horses, but for the most part they weren’t all “farm kids.”  I found all sorts of projects that I could throw myself into.  My learned love of storytelling and photography obviously didn’t stop with 4H.  It’s how I make a living still today through FarmHer! 

Imagine my surprise when I was at a Nationwide event during the American Farm Bureau Convention (see the video of that trip here) this past winter and by chance I ended up in a group of people that included Jennifer Sirangelo, the President and CEO of the National 4H Council.  The person who introduced us started telling her about FarmHer and me as I stood off to the side (slightly in awe of the woman who leads one of the largest and most significant youth organizations in our country) eagerly waiting to start talking to her.  Jennifer listened to his introduction and then said “YES, I’ve heard of her (me)…I've heard she’s a 4H alum!”  At that point my excitement bubbled over.  I may have done a little jump, telling her that the HER she referenced was actually ME!  We got to talking about 4H and how I see the importance of it throughout my travels.  Before parting for the night we decided to connect again, this time over a podcast discussion.  I was actually set to head out to D.C. for that podcast during National Ag Week but the Coronavirus had other plans.  So, we did what we all have done and we pivoted to a distanced discussion. 

Jennifer is an accomplished leader in the non-profit space.  Listen in to the discussion on the podcast to learn about her rise as a woman leader.  She shares some of the important steps that helped her grow along the way, and about the bright future she see’s ahead of all of us. 

We all eat, and that is why farming will always matter.  Everybody Eats is where the stories of food and farming intersect.  These stories told through my FarmHer lens connect us to our food and more importantly, the people behind it.  Everybody Eats is a collection of stories of those who protect our rural communities, who grow our food with extraordinary care, and who provide support, education, and assistance to make sure Everybody Eats. 

Experience the other stories of Everybody Eats!




Leave a comment


Also in The FarmHer Blog

Back to #FarmHer Basics
Back to #FarmHer Basics

June 15, 2020 1 Comment

Refreshed look, new content, same #FarmHer.  These past few months have been the culmination of a lot of hard work, changing of thought, expanding my outlook and refocusing.  I truly hope our new brand experience is as inviting and welcoming as the FarmHers I meet on the road.  Their stories lift me up and I know they will for you too.  Watch today to explore the world around you, expand your horizons and live your best life with entertainment, connection and inspiration for the FarmHer in all of us.

Continue Reading

It's Time to Act, Together
It's Time to Act, Together

June 09, 2020 8 Comments

We must stand up, together.  FarmHer lives within the culture of agriculture.  I have said it 100 times if not 1000, agriculture is a culture and like every culture, it needs diversity to thrive.  Diversity in color, gender, geography, age, thought, size…diversity in everything.  This is our culture and it is on all of us to stand up and speak out against all types of racism.  

Continue Reading

A Mental Health Focus in Trying Times
A Mental Health Focus in Trying Times

May 29, 2020

In times like today, in the midst of a pandemic, it is impossible to remove all stress.  The focus must be on coping with stress and recognizing in yourself or others, when it is time to ask for help.

Continue Reading