“It has been an exciting ending to 2018 for the KASM Farm Department (Albany, Minnesota),” reports Joe Gill. In November, Joe received the Agriculture Communicator of the Year Award by the Minnesota Farm Bureau Foundation. According to the Minnesota Farm Bureau website, this award is presented because an important mission of Farm Bureau is to inform the public about its policy positions and to tell agriculture’s story.

Illinois Governor-Elect J.B. Pritzker and Lieutenant Governor-Elect Juliana Stratton announced the formation and members of the transition’s Growing Our Agricultural Economy Committee. The committee is the fifth of several working groups of the Illinois transition made up of subject-matter experts who will advise and guide the incoming Pritzker-Stratton administration. The Growing Our Agricultural Economy Committee will be chaired by former USDA Rural Development State Director Colleen Callahan and Former State Senator John Sullivan, and consist of 22 members. “Agriculture accounts for one in 17 jobs in Illinois, and J.B. and I are committed to supporting farmers across our state,” said Lieutenant Governor-Elect Stratton. “This committee will focus on policies that help our agriculture and rural communities thrive — from investing in farm to market infrastructure and expanding access to capital for family farmers to defending agricultural education and growing rural areas in downstate Illinois.” 

Besides his recent induction into the 2018 NAFB Hall of Fame, Don Wick (Red River Farm Network, Grand Forks, ND) also received the Minnesota Farmers Union Ag Communicator of the Year Award.  Both awards were presented at the NAFB 2018 Convention

In December of 2017 after 43 years of being on the radio, I suddenly found myself wondering whether my broadcast career was over,” said Mike Adams (Adams on Agriculture, Jacksonville, IL). Among the many emails and phone calls Mike received, there was one in particular that caught him by surprise. “Lance Knudson with the American Ag Network called to see what my plans were for the future. I told him I really wasn't sure, and we agreed to talk again after the holidays. Little did I know that phone call was the door opening to the next stage of my career. When we talked again in January, Lance explained he wanted to start a syndicated radio show based on news content and using the contacts and experiences I had gained over the years. It seemed too good to be true. A few days later I talked again with Lance and Mark Swendsen about different ideas and possibilities. The more we talked the more interested I became, and we soon reached an agreement.”

Bob Larson (Ag Information Network of the West, Walla Walla, WA) found his niche working for the student-run college radio station, KBVR 88.7 FM, as a news reporter and eventually news director.  Back in the ‘80s, he graduated from Oregon State University (OSU) with a degree in technical journalism. During his time at OSU, he also wrote for the school paper, The Daily Barometer. “After graduation, I moved to Seattle looking for a career in media or public relations, working for a few different organizations, but I eventually found my way back to radio with a job at KOMO in 1995. I started as a talk show board-op and producer, but I found myself back on the news side when the station went from a talk format to a 24-7 news source a couple of years later. In 2006, as things seemed to happen in radio, there was some reorganization at KOMO, and I found myself lured to News-Talk 710 KIRO. About a year later, the iconic KIRO AM station moved to the FM side at 97.3. Over the years in radio news, I’ve enjoyed assignments as a general news reporter, anchor, and editor.”