Congratulations to Avery Robertson, Class 39, and his wife, Melissa, on the birth of their son, Colter Ray, on Saturday, March 16. He weighed in at 8 lbs. 10 oz. and was 20 ¼" long. Sympathy is also extended to Avery in the passing of his grandfather the Monday after Colter was born. It was a blessing that Grandpa Dennis was able to meet his first grandchild.
Jason Downs, Class 37, and his wife, Tara, welcomed twins, Gracie Rose and Wesley William, on March 26 at 2:02 and 2:06 PM. Both weighed the same amount - 5lbs. 13 oz. They will be joining their big brother, Hayden.
Sympathy is extended to Stephen Parrott, Class 39, on the passing of his grandfather, Gary Grindstaff. Gary was a former commissioner for Twin Falls County.
Sympathy is also extended to Joel Wasem, Class 38, whose grandfather, Harold Wasem of Grangeville, passed away after 95 years of engagement in agriculture and in his community.
Our sympathy goes out to Kali Sherrill, Class 27, on the loss of her mother, Grace Kay Van Leeuwen of Kimberly. Kali said her mom spent most of her life baking cookies, giving advice and loving on kids.
Kim Korn, Class 14, and her husband, Richard, who operate Korn's Dairy in Terreton, were recently named Dairy Farmers of America Members of Distinction. DFA recognizes dairy farmers who excel at their operations, in their communities and in their service to the dairy industry. Kim has been a member of the Idaho Dairy Products Commission for a number of years. The operation includes 90 head of Holstein and Brown Swiss animals.
Don Morishita, Class 11, will retire at the end of April after nearly 30 years of working with associates to provide the information that growers need on crop production. Don began his career as a weed scientist and, most recently, has been the superintendent of the University of Idaho R and E Center in Kimberly.
Ron Abramovich, Class 28, will retire later this spring from his position with the USDA-NRCS. Ron is frequently referred to as, "Mr. Snow", since he is a regular voice and face in public media reporting on snow and moisture conditions for Idaho.
David Mosman, Class 12, and Cathy Mosman, Class 4, were pretty proud parents as their son, Ray Mosman, was chosen by Senator Dan Johnson, Class 14, to sit in his seat at the Idaho Legislature while Senator Johnson had shoulder surgery. Ray is a graduate of the University of Idaho and operates the family's farm in Nezperce.
Sign up now for the 3rd Annual LIA Golf Scramble! The tournament will be held earlier this year than it was last year - on June 7 - with a shotgun start at 9:00 AM. We will be playing at Canyon Springs Golf Course in Twin Falls. Registration is open for teams and individuals (we will put you in a great group!) at www.leadershipidahoag.org/golf or by printing this form. Several levels of sponsorship opportunities are available by filling out the form or contacting Kendra Dustin, LIA Development Director, at email@example.com.
Idaho Ag in the Classroom workshops will be held in three locations: Pocatello (June 5-6); Nampa (June 10-11) and Lewiston (June 13-14). I hope you will help us to spread the word by encouraging the teachers of children in your family to attend. Workshops are open to teachers grades K-12 and are worth one graduate credit. If you need brochures to share with your teacher, please call Lisa at 208-888-0988.
Membership dues for 2018-2019 are approaching the deadline. Some alumni work to maintain a perfect membership record following their graduation. If you have not paid your dues for this year, you have until June 30 to do so. Annual dues are $50 and can be paid online or mailed directly to the office, or you can pay by credit card by calling Patty at 208-888-0988.
Congratulations to Scott Jensen, Class 21, who was recently presented with the University of Idaho Excellence in Extension award. Scott is an Owyhee County Extension educator. Sarah Baker, Class 34, also received a "Ten Years of Service" award at the State Extension Conference. Sarah serves as a Custer County Extension educator.
Important Upcoming Dates
May 12-17 Washington, D.C., Experience '19 (sign up now)
June 7 LIA Golf Scramble - Canyon Springs Golf Course, Twin Falls
June 30 Final day for 2018-2019 payment of LIA annual dues
Aug. 1 Deadline for applications for LIA Class 40
Sept. 6 Selection of Class 40 participants
Nov. 4-7 Moscow Session
Dec. 2-5 Pocatello Session
Jan. 6-9 Twin Falls Session
Feb. 23-28 Boise Session
Feb. 27 Gala Dinner and Auction
Teri Murrison, LIA affiliate member, had knee replacement surgery in early March after serving as co-chairman of the 2019 Ag Summit. We are hearing good news on her recovery.
Sympathy is extended to Mike Nichols, Class 13, on the passing of his father, Rex Nichols, who was 95 years old. Mike and his son are involved in the farming operation started by his dad.
Sympathy is extended to Chuck Johnson, Class 9, on the passing of his father, Don Johnson. Don was a lobbyist for the Idaho State Grange and an active and involved citizen in the Kuna community.
Dr. Chris McIntosh, Class 17, has been named the department head for the University of Idaho Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology (AERS) effective March 11, 2019. Chris had served in this role on an interim basis since the fall of 2017. He has represented AERS well to those within the University as well as to our external stakeholders across the state. Chris' research activities on the economics of potato disease management have been highly multidisciplinary. His service roles as editor of two different journals within the ag economics profession has brought great visibility from the profession nationally.
Blake Matthews, Class 36 and secretary/treasurer of the LIA Board of Trustees, recently participated in the Potato Industry Leadership Institute. The trip included time in Portland, Oregon, for public speaking and etiquette training. After a visit to Salem and the state Capitol, the group flew to Washington, D.C., for more in-depth training on public speaking and media training. The group was addressed by USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue and had the opportunity to meet with Idaho congressmen and senators. Blake was elected to be the "grower leader" by his fellow classmates and will return next year to help with the next class of participants.
Scott Breeding, Class 27, was recently awarded the Ted Diehl Award for Meritorious Service from the Idaho Water Users Association at their annual convention in January 2019. Scott is still a board member for Idaho Water Users. On January 27, he became a grandpa for the second time when his daughter, Danielle Stephens, Class 31, gave birth to a little girl who was named Elise. In early March, Scott was elected to the Committee of Nine for Water District 01 where he will be representing the Twin Falls Canal Co., the Milner Irrigation District, and American Falls Reservoir District #2.
Mark Duffin, Class 27, was recognized at LIA graduation with the Wayne Meyer Statesman Award. Mark has been serving as the executive director for the Idaho Sugarbeet Growers Association since 1991 and will retire later this spring. A past state representative for three terms, Mark has been an active spokesman for Idaho's sugarbeet industry in Idaho and nationally.
Congratulations: The annual LIA Alumni Gala and Auction generated over $115,000. Thanks to the members of the auction committee and to everyone who donated, attended and supported the auction. Congratulations to LIA Class 39 on a wonderful event.
Congratulations to the following LIA alumni who were presented LIA Lifetime Membership Awards at graduation:
Steve Bateman, Class 11
Travis Lammers, Class 34
Roger Clark, Class 13
Susi Larrocea, Class 4
Tyler Cranney, Class 36
Mike Nichols, Class 13
Leland Earnest, Class 12
Shane Robins, Class 35
Jason Keller, Class 37
Three individuals received the Friend of LIA Award at the graduation of Class 39: Edie Nunes, Class 32 and chairman of the LIA Golf Committee; Kyle Wangemann, Class 36, a trustee and co-chairman of the auction committee; and Bill Newbry, general manager of PNW Farmers' Cooperative located in Genesee.
Congratulations to the following LIA alumni who received Ten-year Membership Awards with the LIA Foundation:
Russ De Kruyf, Class 28
Brett Lolley, Class 28
Glen Edwards, Class 28
Dan Mattson, Class 28
Candi Fitch, Class 28
John Romero, Class 28
Terry Jones, Class 21
Kim Royer, Class 24
Travis Jones, Class 28
Michael Stowell, Class 20
At the annual LIA Gala and Auction, former Governor C.L. "Butch" Otter was presented with the Founders' Club Award. Governor Otter played a substantial role in the formation of the LIA program during his days with Simplot as vice president of international affairs and when he started in politics as lieutenant governor under Governor John Evans.
Be sure you have marked your calendar for Friday, June 7, for the annual LIA Golf Tournament in Twin Falls. Now is the time to be forming your teams. If you need further information email Chairman Edie Nunes at firstname.lastname@example.org or Kendra Dustin at Kendra@amgidaho.com.
LIA Class 39 marked a total of 988 who have graduated from the program since it started in 1985-86. Applications for Class 40 are being accepted now and are available online here. Applications are due by August 1.