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RLND Class VII Examines Agriculture's Future In North Dakota

The third RLND Class VII Seminar was jam-packed with speakers, tours and experiences that class VII participants won't soon forget. The seminar theme was Agriculture's Future in North Dakota and focused on diversity in agriculture.

Day one started with Rachelle Vettern, 4-H Youth/Leadership Specialist NDSU Extension Service, sharing information about ethical leadership. After lunch Mel Nelson, Executive Management CEO, shared information from the Work of Leaders assessment. The day ended with the RLND Leadership Dinner. Rick Berg, former ND Congressman, was the guest speaker. RLND Alumni and Minnesota Ag & Rural Leadership (MARL) participants also attended the dinner.

Thursday morning the class stopped at Unity Seed in West Fargo to learn about and see plant breeding in action. The next stop was the Tharaldson Ethanol and Abbiamo Pasta plants in Casselton.

Next stop was the NDSU Trading Room where Dr. Bill Wilson, Distinguished Professor, gave insight into commodity trading and the technology that shapes trading today.  After a group photo at the Fargo Theater sign, class participants listened to an informational panel on GMOs.  Panel presenters included: Andrea Hillstad of Natural Grocers, Carl Peterson of Peterson Farms Seed and Dr. Tom Peters of NDSU Extension Service.

The next stop was Norwood Sales and Sun Gold Foods south of Fargo and then Dakota Fiber Mill of Kindred.  The bus ride was utilized for sharing information. Participants saw the Casselton train derailment site and the proposed diversion site. The day ended with participants experiencing a business etiquette dinner with presenter Jill Wilkey, Director, NDSU Career Center.

Friday morning Annie Carlson, RLND Class V alumna and owner of Morning Joy Farms, shared information about her pastured animal operation and their non-conventional farm lifestyle.  Don Wick and Mike Hergert of Red River Farm Network shared information about successfully working with the media and how to get your message across.

Before adjourning, the class learned that their international seminar has been planned for Vietnam and Thailand!  The class will be traveling to both countries in February of 2017!


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