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AG conference geared to female landowners on Nov. 8 features key speakers, break-out sessions

The 13th annual Women Landowners Ag-Conference, organized by women in Ray, Lafayette and Johnson counties, will be held Thursday, Nov. 8 at the Community Center in Concordia.
The conference is co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, University of Missouri Extension, and the Concordia Tourism Committee. It will begin with registration at 8:30 a.m., with the program beginning at 9 and continuing until 3 p.m. announced Marsha Corbin, an organizer of the event, said the conference always features a delicious noon meal.
“We have two keynote speakers this year,” Corbin said. “Mrs. Brenda Black will begin the conference with her presentation; ‘Were You Born in a Barn?: Life Lessons from the barn lot and beyond.’ Mrs. Lane McConnell will speak early in the afternoon; her presentation is ‘Going Social: Advancing Agriculture into the Future’ Lane has a passion for telling the story of Agriculture.”
Speaker Brenda Black is the 2012 Missouri Cattle Women’s Association president. Nominated by her peers, Black was also appointed in 2011 by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to serve on the national Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board for three years. She is additionally a spokesperson for the Missouri Beef Industry Council’s “Speaking of Beef” and one of 3,000 Masters of Beef Advocacy graduates nationwide.
Black grew up showing cattle and employed her Ag Journalism degree from the University of Missouri upon graduation, becoming marketing director for a purebred cattle ranch in West Central Missouri. Today, with her husband, Alan, and sons, Austin and Cooper, the family runs a small commercial and purebred cow/calf herd comprised primarily of Simmental and Angus genetics. Brenda also owns a writing and public relations agency and is a graphic designer, author and columnist with over 1,700 published works, including breeder profile and beef industry news articles plus three inspirational books.
She’s a preacher’s wife, Sunday School teacher of teens, retired home school teacher of sons, singer, speaker, auctioneer and former Miss Missouri PRCA rodeo queen who loves living and working in the country.
Speaker Lane McConnell has had a passion for telling the story of agriculture from a young age.  She was raised on her family’s cattle farm deep in the heart of southwest Missouri and grew up showing registered Charolais and Angus cattle and was an avid FFA member, serving as the Missouri State FFA Association’s Vice President in 2000-01.  Lane graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia, where she majored in Agricultural Education, Leadership and Communications and minored in Agricultural Economics.
She has worked as a freelance writer, as the promotions and marketing coordinator for the Brownfield Farm Radio Network and as a marketing specialist and local foods program manager for the Missouri Department of Agriculture in the areas of local foods, farmers’ markets, organics and agritourism.  In 2009, Lane started Agri-Comm Services, where she works as an agricultural marketing consultant, focusing on sustainable farming and local food projects.  Lane, her husband Charlie, and children Caston and Cora reside in Hollister, and Lane is the market manager of the Farmers Market of the Ozarks in Springfield.
“In addition to Mrs. Black and Mrs. McConnell, participants will be able to choose 3 breakout sessions to attend,” Corbin said. “The sessions will cover a wide variety of agricultural topics, including farm business organization structure, understanding financial statements, software for farm records and accounting, strategies for improving cattle operations, USDA programs, and getting organized. Participants will also be presented with information on conservation, including adding trees to increase farm value.”
The Women Landowners Ag Conference is held annually for the purpose of providing women in agriculture with targeted information. Women organizing the event put on the annual conference with the help of USDA and University of Missouri Extension staffs.
For registration information for the Women Landowners Ag-Conference, participants may call 660-584-8732 (ext. 2) or 660-584-3658. The fee for this year’s conference is $15 for the early registration deadline of Friday, Nov. 2. Registration at the door will be $20.

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