When I graduated from college and got my job as a farm broadcaster, I had no idea of the connections and friendships I would make covering news in the tri-state area. As passionate as I am about the work done by Extension, I have always missed the agricultural aspect of my job as a county 4-H officer. Being able to join the team here at Farm Progress as the managing editor of Dakota Farmer seemed like a dream come true, and the past year has been full of learning, writing, driving and planning magazine pages .
Back to media
When I joined Farm Progress last February, I was exhausted and exhausted from quitting my job with Extension. As much as I loved my job there, spending long hours, nights and weekends playing the role of three people took its toll, especially during a pandemic. Coming back to farm media has been a breath of fresh air.
You probably know by now that I am extremely passionate about agriculture and the people who work in it. The ability to get paid to attend agricultural shows and research summits, and of course, to visit your farms and ranches always seems too good to be true. The connections I’ve had the privilege of making with some of the best in agriculture are irreplaceable.
One such person, a woman I met on Twitter a long time ago when I was in college writing a series of interviews about women in agriculture, forwarded to me the job posting for my current role here at Farm Progress. She remains someone I and many others look up to and respect within AG. I always make sure to stop by his Bison tailgate cooler.
From finding enough stories to fill the many pages of Dakota Farmer to writing about new gear found at Husker Harvest Days, I’m happy to learn quickly. Stepping out of my comfort zone has always been something I’ve enjoyed — whether it’s my first time reading Farmers Markets Live as a broadcaster or driving myself across the state of Nebraska at 11 p.m. .
Although I spend much of my time in my home office, changing webinars or agricultural shows, or furiously writing and rewriting the next cover, the times I travel and am on the road to cover stories are some of my favorites – minus the blizzards and wintry weather that we in the Dakotas are blessed with every year.
I am forever grateful to everyone here who has guided me through my freshman year and beyond. Mindy Ward, my boss who’s been on numerous video calls with me, while I’m reorganizing 64 pages of a magazine, trying to hire a new freelancer, or choosing the best photo for the story. Kevin Schulz, our personal writer whom I am so grateful for, brings his years of experience and his network of South Dakota farmers to our pages. It is always a pleasure to work with Diane Barry, our editor; Shelly Jarka, our artistic director; Curt Arens, editor of Nebraska Farmer; and the countless others who have provided advice or assistance over the past year.
I must also thank our readers. You may not have really had a choice of the next editor of your (hopefully favorite) farm magazine, but meeting up at farm events and hearing your comments on stories or ideas is still the one of my favorite parts of the job. I hope to continue filling these pages with stories of resilience from fellow farmers, helpful production tips and advice, and all things Dakota farming.