New Student Member Gets Washington Assignment

Leann Fox, senior agriculture communications at Utah State University, is serving as a public policy intern with the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. She attended the NAFB convention in Kansas City and decided to become a student member. We met her in Kansas City and invited her to contact us when she began her assignment. Christine Quinn and I hosted her for dinner at the National Press Club in Washington. She applied and was selected for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s public policy internship. She has been in Washington, DC for almost a month now and has been doing research on the policy side of NCBA. In early February, she will attend the NCBA national convention in San Antonio. How did she find out about the NAFB? “My mentor, Dr. Kelsey Hall (Utah State University), has really been a guide for me on my professional path. She emailed me about the NAFB convention, and I knew I couldn’t pass that opportunity up. That convention was one of the impactful experiences for me. I knew I wanted to become a student member right away.”

“As a generational farmer and rancher from Thatcher, ID, I quickly learned that raising cattle and crops were more than just the way we earned money. My love for the land and our livestock was inborn. The values passed on by my family encouraged me to pursue an education in agriculture and sustainability. I served as a chapter officer in FFA for four years and a district officer for one. Participating and competing at the state and national levels in FFA brought about so many opportunities for me. I actively served as our student body vice president my senior year and chose to attend Utah State University majoring in agriculture communications and journalism. This major brought my two passions together, it was perfect for me. My experiences at USU have made me aware of issues in agriculture that producers cannot resolve on their own. I started writing the agricultural beat for the school newspaper, writing press releases for the college of agriculture, and participating in club activities. 

“Last spring, I competed in a scholarship ambassador program for the Utah Cattlemen. I took first place and became the first Utah Beef Ambassador in 12 years. Educating the consumer about this industry was fun. Using my background and education in agriculture helped me sympathize with those who may not view things the way I do, and then share my story.” Right before she moved to her Washington internship, she was sworn in as president of the Utah Cattlewomen’s Association. “It will be nice to connect with them while in San Antonio.” 
“For the last four summers, I have worked for the U.S. Forest Service as a wildland fire fighter. Working for them has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. I have traveled all over the country, following the fire. People ask me how I do it, and I just reply I grew up with three brothers. Gaining this experience with public lands has been beneficial in DC. Cattle have to graze, and a lot of times on public forests. It has been fun connecting the two experiences while interning here.”