Rocky Mountain Farmers Union member Gail Meisner, from Wellington, represented Colorado as a delegate at National Farmers Union’s 111th Anniversary Convention in Springfield, Mass. She was one of nine delegates representing Colorado, Wyoming and New Mexico that makes up the RMFU region.
“NFU’s convention is our most important event of the year,” said NFU President Roger Johnson. “This is where our grassroots members come together to determine NFU’s policy for the next 12 months and pinpoint what issues we need to focus on.”
The 2013 convention brought together Farmers Union members from across the country and featured discussions on the farm bill, challenges facing beginning farmers, farm safety, conservation and renewable energy. Delegates from each state’ Farmers Union organization helped shape the direction of the national family farm organization through policy development.
“We made a number of important policy decisions at this convention,” said Johnson. “We worked through a number of areas, and established what NFU will advocate for during the next round of farm bill discussions. It was a very productive convention, one that allowed our members an opportunity to make their voices heard.”
Rocky Mountain member Tom Wingfield, from Livermore, was a member of the National Policy Committee and was a key factor in the immigration policy that was adopted during the meeting.
U.S. Department of Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan and Sam Kass, White House assistant chief and senior policy advisor for healthy food initiatives, addressed convention attendees.
The break out session, “Ten Things Any Woman in Ag Needs to Know,” included panelists from Colorado, Attorney Deb Conroy and FUSA Insurance Agent Beckie Harkey. Alberta Nana Akyaa Akosa was a keynote speaker from Ghana, Africa for the National Food and Agricultural Show (FAGRO) on the challenges women face farming in Africa.
More than 500 people attended from across the U.S. and Ghana, Africa attended the event.