Virtual Conference – Wednesday January 30

Session Descriptions

Meeting the Needs of Underserved Audiences: A Listening Session (1-1:50 pm, Wednesday 1/30). Join this panel discussion to gain insights into how the intersection of gender and race/ethnicity/culture can affect women’s experiences and needs building and sustaining farm and ranch businesses and educators and service better meet the needs of underserved audiences. Panelists will share ideas about building equity in  food and farming systems. Panelists will be:  Lacey Ingrao, of Bee Wise Farms, Michigan; Lindsey Lunsford, Tuskegee University;  Shatomi Luster-Edward, University of Missouri and Jen Silveri, director of Field Operations for Michigan Food and Farming Systems (MIFFS).

Providing Leadership Skills to Rural and Limited Access Women Farmers (2-2:50 pm, Wednesday 1/30). Many rural women farmers have limited access to personal development workshops because of lack of funds, time or transportation. This session will share a method for women to access self-led or leader-led leadership development education in which women farmers talk via video about their challenges and how they addressed them. Participants are asked to come up with methods of dealing with the challenges in a manner that is comfortable to them. Educators can use these videos to run small group discussions in areas where women have access to gather. Educators will be given tools to lead these discussion groups and methods to follow-up with farmers to reinforce success.

21st Century Education: Thinking Outside of the Box (3-3:50 pm, Wednesday, 1/30). Technology can be overwhelming at times but it also offers us new ways to expand our outreach to beginning farm and ranch women. New tools also allow us to reach a broader audience, build better collaborations and work more efficiently. In this session we’ll hear about several models of education, technical assistance and coaching that are being employed successfully with women farmers and ranchers and how those opportunities are changing how we deliver education. Specific tools and resources will be shared and there will be time for questions and success strategies. Presenters: Margaret Viebrock, Washington State University Extension will provide an overview of an annual conference that covers 5 states, 36 counties, one day. What works, what has evolved over time, and what to consider if you’d like to try a similar model. Shannon Dill and Jennifer Rhodes, University of Maryland Extension will share their experience in developing a webinar series and a social media campaign to strengthen a network of women farmers in the mid-Atlantic region. Mary Peabody, UVM Extension, will moderate and will share some tips and strategies learned from a decade of online education for beginning farm and ranch women.