The Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation (MFBF) announced the winners of the Young Farmers & Ranchers leadership contests at the 103rd MFB Annual Meeting on November 20 in Bloomington.
The Discussion Meet is designed to build basic communication skills, develop a keen understanding of important agricultural issues, and explore how groups can pool knowledge to reach consensus and solve problems in young farmers and ranchers.
The winner of the contest was Michaela Ehlers of Elbow Lake in Grant County. She will represent Minnesota at the American Farm Bureau Federation national competition in January in Atlanta, Georgia.
Other finalists included: Jeff Pagel of Olmsted County; Brady Wulf of Pope County; and Amber Willis of Kandiyohi County.
Semi-finalists included: Ehlers, Pagel, Wulf, Willis and Amanda Cook, Chisago County; David Ehlers, Grant County; Hart Hauge, Washington-Ramsey County; and Catie Schmidt, Steele County.
Excellence in Agriculture
The Excellence in Agriculture competition is for young farmers and ranchers who may not derive 100 percent of their income from farming, but are still involved in agriculture, leadership, and Farm Bureau.
The winners of the contest were Mark and Sara Hewitt of Kilkenny in LeSueur County. They will represent Minnesota at the American Farm Bureau Federation national competition in January in Atlanta, Georgia.
Other finalists included Amanda and Brad Durow of Dakota County and Corey Ramsden Scott of Washington-Ramsey County.
Collegiate Discussion Meet
The Collegiate Discussion Meet is an opportunity for collegiate students in Minnesota to build leadership and communication skills through discussing agricultural issues and solving problems through consensus.
The winner of the contest was Ben Olander of Todd County, representing the University of Minnesota – Crookston. He will represent Minnesota at the American Farm Bureau Federation national collegiate competition in February in Louisville, Kentucky.
Other finalists included: Lafe Aarsvold, Southwest Minnesota State University; Colby Schroeder, Ridgewater College; and Jackie Wisinski, Southwest Minnesota State University.
Semi-finalists included: Aarsvold, Olander, Schroeder, Wisinski and Charlie Armstrong, South Central College; Ian Gearhart, Riverland College; Logan Krone, South Central College; James Mathiowetz, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities; Evelyn Rosas, Riverland College; Maddie Smith, University 0f Minnesota – Twin Cities; Kyle Thomas, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities; and Kellie Wilts, Ridgewater College.