Anderson Awarded Outstanding Nebraska LEAD Alumni

Having grown up in South Dakota, agriculture was certainly something with which Ken Anderson was familiar.

In 1977, after his graduation from South Dakota State University, he took his first farm-broadcasting job in central Nebraska at a local radio station. The radio station covered most of Nebraska as well as a large part of Kansas and Northeast Colorado.

It was at this radio station Anderson first became aware of the LEAD program; a program established in 1981 under the direction of the Nebraska Agricultural Leadership Council. The program focused on developing agricultural leaders from Nebraska’s future generations to take on the constant changes that occur in agricultural policy, marketing, economics, and technology.

The Nebraska LEAD Program is the state’s only comprehensive agricultural leadership development program in which participants are selected each year for a two-year fellowship.

During the two-year period, these fellows participate in 12 three-day in-state seminars conducted at cooperating public and private colleges and universities across Nebraska. During his own fellowship, Anderson participated in a two-week National Study Tour, taking the fellows through cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Washington, D.C., and Kansas City. In 1983, his group also had the chance to participate in a three-week international trip to Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan. Anderson stated these opportunities benefited his career as an agricultural broadcaster by giving him the confidence to dig into more of the issues about which he had been learning as well as the confidence to step up into future leadership roles.

Anderson retired in 2021 from his position at Brownfield Ag News; and earlier this year, he was awarded the Outstanding LEAD Alumni Award for the Nebraska LEAD Alumni Association for his exceptional work as an anchor and reporter and for his efforts in telling the stories of Nebraska Farmers.