WSU Extension will host its annual Women in Agriculture conference on Saturday (Jan. 25.) Winthrop will be one of 34 conference sites in six states. The all-day conference includes simulcast sessions and a panel of local farmers, with plenty of opportunities to ask questions, discuss the presentation topics, and network.
Two local farmers will join the conference for the day and field questions during a live session. Panelists Sam Thrasher of Doubletree Farm in Twisp and Shannon Gilbert of Okanogan Farmstand and 8th Street Greens in Okanogan will be prepared to speak about how they approach decision-making and problem-solving.
“Healthy Farms” is the theme of this year’s conference. The Women in Ag conferences support WSU Extension’s “Women, Farms, and Food” mission to “empower women in agriculture to achieve goals and manage risk through education, networking and technology.” Healthy farmers are a key to healthy farms, according to conference chair Margaret Viebrock. This year’s speakers will guide farmers in making “conscious decisions for their own well-being and the well-being of their farms.”
This is the first time the conference has included a site in the Methow Valley. “I really like the idea of coming together as a small group,” said Kayla Wells, WSU Okanogan County Extension Director. “The Methow farming community is very women-centric. I don’t know how often groups of farmers get together … the more we get together over a common cause, the more it strengthens the community.”
Wells emphasized that interaction will be encouraged and the panel’s presentation is “not set in stone — audience questions could take it in a different direction.”
The panelists will also participate in two “Taking it Home” sessions after the keynote presentations. Those sessions give attendees a chance to discuss take-home messages and start planning their own next steps.
The Winthrop session will be held at 3 Bears Café & Quilts. Check-in is at 8 a.m. and the conference will run from 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. The registration fee is $35 and includes the workshop, light breakfast, lunch and conference materials. Visit www.womeninag.wsu.edu for details and to register. For more information, contact Kayla Wells at firstname.lastname@example.org or (509) 422-7245.