Statewide Women In Agriculture Event Scheduled For February 16th


A Statewide Women in Agriculture Event, hosted by Nemaha, Jackson, & Pottawatomie County Conservation Districts will be Saturday, February 16, 2019, at the Corning Community Building in Corning, KS.

Registration for the Women in Agriculture Event, “The Heart of the Farm,” begins at 8:00 a.m., with presentations starting at 8:30 a.m. Both men and women are welcome to attend this free and informative event.

An amazing lineup of speakers is scheduled for the day. The key note speaker will be Chad Pregracke. Chad is living proof that even a single person can make a difference. Growing up along the Mississippi River, he was both marveled by the river’s beauty and frustrated with its plight due to years of neglect and pollution. At the age of 17, he set out on a mission to do something about the disregarded river. Since 1998, when Living Lands & Waters was established, 10 million pounds of garbage has been removed by Chad, his crew, and over 100,000 volunteers from 23 rivers in 20 states. Chad is accomplishing his mission to clean up America’s rivers and launch a social movement that engages people and betters the world in the process.

Bret Henderson is a Financial Officer with Frontier Farm Credit in Manhattan, KS. He grew up in western Kansas and graduated from Kansas State University, majoring in Finance & MIS. Bret has worked in the Farm Credit System since 2005, first with Farm Credit Services Southwest in Tempe, Arizona, and now with Frontier Farm Credit since 2016. He works in partnership with customer-owners to choose the proper financial and risk management products that will enable success in their operations. You won’t want to miss this great information about how to run your farm like a business.

Carey Portell will share a gut-wrenching story about when she and two of her children were involved in a fatal drunk driving crash which left Carey with partial disabilities. Unable to work outside the home, Carey manages the operations of their 1100-acre farm in Central Missouri and has chosen to turn her tragedy into something good by sharing her story. Carey says, “My four-year recovery after being the survivor of a drinking and driving collision has sparked a passion to inspire others along a positive path in life.”

Gretchen Stroberg is a registered dietitian married to a third-generation farmer and rancher in central Kansas. She has dabbled in clinical nutrition, outpatient nutrition and group nutrition education, and she enjoys spending time in her own kitchen preparing meals for her hungry family! As a practicing dietitian, Gretchen was shocked by the amount of fear of food that exists in the community. She began Pastures and Plates in an effort to challenge common food myths and build confidence in foods being enjoyed by families all around. It is her hope that a better understanding of food will eliminate unnecessary fears. Gretchen will demonstrate how to repurpose those leftovers into fun and healthy meals that will have your family wanting more!

Traci Turner was raised on a farm in Washington County, Kansas. After working in special education for 15 years, Traci retired and became a full-time bling babe with Premier Designs Jewelry. She has been an accessory stylist for over 14 years and loves showing women how to love fashion and create their own unique style. Her mission is to serve the needs of the women she meets and remind them that earrings can change your attitude! Watch as Traci shows you how to “shop your closet” utilizing clothes and jewelry to go from work to kids’ events to meetings and everything in between!

Imagine watching your home, farm, or ranch being destroyed by fire. Many people would just give up. The Giles sisters, Molly Giles-Beckford, Katie Shaw, and Jenny Betschart and their families lost almost everything in the wildfires that swept through Clark County, Kansas in 2017. Rather than give up, these three sisters fought through the wildfires and their passion for agriculture to put their homes, farms, and ranches back together. They are partners with their parents in The Giles Ranch, a commercial Angus operation. Don’t miss this great story the Giles sisters have to say.

A light breakfast will be served in the morning and is sponsored by Heinen Brothers Agra Services. There will be a break in presentations at noon for lunch, catered by Home Cookin’ of Seneca, and is sponsored by Ag Partners. Please join us for this wonderful event that wouldn’t be possible without generous donations from sponsors.

In order to know how much food to prepare for the Women in Agriculture Event, please contact the Nemaha County Conservation District at (785) 336-2186 ext. 110 or register online at no later than February 9, 2019. Hurry and register today!

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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