Volunteers help teach youth about agriculture

Volunteers help teach youth about agriculture Where do you live in South Dakota? Is agriculture a part of your community? Yes!

Agriculture is present in every county in our state! Just about everything we eat, wear and use comes from agriculture, which is South Dakota's number one industry, contributing over $16 billion to the state's economy.

A group of 13 men and women from across the state give of their time and talents to help educate youth about South Dakota's agriculture. The South Dakota Agriculture in the Classroom Board of Directors includes:

President Kevin Fridley, S.D. Department of Agriculture, Pierre; Vice President Craig Dybedahl, pharmaceutical sales, Colton; Secretary Cindy Christensen, Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce; and Treasurer Wanda Smith, producer, Huron.

Members at large are: Micy Highstreet, school administrator, Colton; Myron Johnson, Lake Area Technical Institute, Watertown; Jim Thoreson, farm news broadcaster, KWAT, Watertown; Carter Anderson, USDA Ag Statistics Service, Sioux Falls; L.J. Osborne, SDSU Cooperative Extension, Brookings; and Gary Grey, S.D. Department of Education, Pierre.

Recently elected to the board for 2004-2006 are Dawn Melius, Wendy Sweeter and Lisa Richardson. Melius, Faulkton, is an agent with Farmers Union Insurance and is president of the state Farmers Union Agents Association. Sweeter, Brookings, is editor of the Tri-State Neighbor, a regional agriculture newspaper out of Sioux Falls. Richardson, Sioux Falls, is the executive director of the S.D. Corn Utilization Council and S.D. Corn Growers Association. Richardson began working for the S.D. Corn Utilization Council in 1997.

Every American should understand how food and fiber are produced and that agriculture has an essential role in maintaining a strong economy. That is what South Dakota Agriculture in the Classroom strives to accomplish.

Agriculture in the Classroom is a nationwide effort to incorporate information about agriculture into elementary and secondary schools.

In South Dakota, Agriculture in the Classroom is funded in part by the S.D. Department of Agriculture, with support from state commodity groups, agribusinesses and individuals, all committed to educating youth about South Dakota's #1 industry.

For more information contact South Dakota Agriculture in the Classroom at (605) 945-2306 or e-mail sdagclassroom@iw.net.

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