Sorghum farmers interested in participating in the Sorghum Checkoff's Leadership Sorghum program can now apply online to become a member of Class II.
Leadership Sorghum is a farmer-focused program to develop the next generation of leaders for the sorghum industry.
Through five sessions over the span of 16 months, Class II will be exposed to various aspects of the sorghum industry from basic research to international marketing. Through both hands-on and classroom style education, participants will gain an understanding of how sorghum moves through the value chain, how checkoffs and stakeholder organizations interact on behalf of the industry and what the future holds for the crop. The program also provides professional development training and networking opportunities.
"This program has really shown me the value of producer leadership in commodity organizations as well as the broad diversity and opportunities that exist in the sorghum industry," said Luke Sayes, Class I graduate and sorghum farmer in Deville, Louisiana. "I believe this industry has a bright future."
Eligible applicants must be farmers actively engaged in sorghum production in the United States. Fifteen growers will be accepted into the program's second class. Men and women are encouraged to apply.
"It was amazing seeing the entire sorghum industry chain from seed production to the final end user," said Pat Damman, a sorghum farmer from Clifton, Kan., and graduate of Leadership Sorghum Class I. "The experience and contacts I received will be a lifelong asset to my farming operation. I wouldn't trade the experience for anything."
Applications and recommendations for Leadership Sorghum Class II are due April 30, 2014. Following the application deadline, all complete applications and references will be reviewed by a committee comprised of Sorghum Checkoff board members, staff and alumni of the Leadership Sorghum program. Finalists may be contacted via telephone to arrange an interview. Class members and alternates will be notified of acceptance by June 30, 2014. The online application, reference forms, program criteria and class schedule are available at the Sorghum Checkoff website.