Women in Ag town hall meeting

Shirley Axtell, an Iowa Falls pork producer, talks to Sen. Chuck Grassley about African swine fever during a recent Women in Ag town hall meeting at Ellsworth Community College in Iowa Falls.

“Road Map to Resilience” is the theme of the 13th annual Iowa Women in Agriculture Conference Aug. 1 at the FFA Enrichment Center in Ankeny.

The 2019 conference will address a range of challenges posed by agriculture's current economic climate: commodity prices, marketing strategies, global trade agreements, financial risk management, ag advocacy, water quality initiatives, transition planning, resilience and balancing family medical care with financing the family farm, according to a news release from the group.

The conference kicks off at 8:15 a.m. and concludes at 5 p.m. Julie Kenney, Iowa Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, will keynote the conference with a talk about the state of Iowa agriculture.

Elaine Kub, author of “Mastering the Grain Markets: How Profits Are Really Made,” DTN analyst and IPTV's Market to Market commentator, will present on new ways of thinking about grain trading. Angie Treptow, Farm Credit Services of America regional vice president, will wrap up the morning sessions with a deep dive into lender expectations for 2020.

The afternoon's choice of breakout sessions and presenters include:

  • “Key Elements of Succession and Continuity Planning: How to Ensure Your Operation Will Thrive During Transition” with Rena Striegel, Transition Point Business Advisors.
  • “Laying Pavers on the Road to Resilience.” Charlotte Halvorson, certified occupational health nurse, and Linda Emanuel, community health nurse and Nebraska farmer with the AgriSafe Network, will focus on healthy coping strategies and available resources.
  • “Caring for Parents without Putting Your Farm on Life Support” with Nancy Lowenberg, vice president of commercial banking relations at US Bank in Cedar Rapids, and Nancy Brannaman, sixth-generation farm owner and manager of her family's farm in Illinois.

The 2019 conference capstone speaker is Kim Bremmer, a farm girl, mother, science junkie and ag advocate from Loyal, Wisconsin.

A complimentary wine and cheese welcome and networking reception will be held on Wednesday, July 31, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at The Cellar Winery at White Oak in nearby Cambridge. Guest speaker is Rose Danaher, the Iowa County environmental specialist and an Amana, Iowa, cattle producer, who is one of two U.S. 2019 Nuffield International Farm Scholars. She'll share her worldwide travels to study water quality.

Participants also have an optional pre-conference tour on July 31, hosted by Iowa State University Extension Women in Agriculture Program.

Early bird registration, which is required for those attending the pre-conference tour, is $50 until July 24 and $70 after that date. Register online in advance, by mail, or from 7:15-8 a.m. on the day of the conference.

For conference information, contact IWIA president Cheryl Tevis at 515-353-4425 or visit www.iowawomeninag.org for a full conference agenda and registration details.