Rural Leadership North Dakota's fifth class includes ranchers, economic development officials, farm organization leaders, Extension Service agents and business owners.
Also participating are a grain farmer, dairy operations manager, patient financial services manager and precision agriculture adviser.
They are among 26 participants chosen for the North Dakota State University Extension Service's leadership development program that starts in December. They will spend 18 months developing skills to help them shape the future of their organization, community and state.
The 2011-13 program consists of in-state seminars with experts on topics such as leadership, economic development and agriculture; tours of agricultural and community businesses; trips to Washington, D.C., and Minneapolis to meet with agricultural, business and governmental leaders; and a trip to Brazil to learn about international agricultural and community issues.
Participants will learn leadership skills, such as thinking critically and creatively, communicating effectively and managing conflict. They also will learn about agricultural and rural policy, the agricultural economy and future trends that could affect North Dakota agriculture, finding innovative ways to fund local and regional development projects, marketing, civic engagement, the value of coalitions and partnerships, industry and community advocacy, and how to work with the state Legislature.
In addition, they'll create a network of contacts and resources they can tap into for ideas, answers and support, and they'll use the skills they've learned to improve their operation, business, organization, community or region.
The people selected for the 2011-13 class are: Ashley Alderson, Bowman; Stacy Artz, Antler; Vawnita Best, Watford City; Thomas Bodine, Velva; Andrea Bowman, Bowman; Annette Carlson, Cleveland; Matthew Danuser, Wyndmere; Rachael Disrud, Fargo; Jay Doan, McKenzie; Daniel Folske, Bowbells; Jessica Haak, Jamestown; Andrew Holle, Mandan; Breanne Ilse, Carrington; Cassidy Kersten, Minot; Anthony Larson, Hettinger; Daryl Lies, Douglas; Gerri Makay, New Rockford; Stephanie Mayfield, Valley City; Cory McCaskey, Beach; Cindy McDonald, West Fargo; Thomas Metz. Northwood; Jolene Obrigewitch, Beach; Benjamin Paulson, Killdeer; John Schneider, Bismarck; Kurtis Shelton, East Grand Forks; and Aaron Tschosik, Ellendale.
"We are very excited to have 26 outstanding participants in RLND Class V," says Marie Hvidsten, RLND program director. "This group of diverse participants will be bringing a wealth of experiences and opinions to the 10 seminars, providing for robust conversation and deep learning.