May 20 elections are just a few weeks away and several LIA alumni are currently running for public office. Two members we are aware of are running for County Commissioner: Sid Freeman, Class 19, is running for County Commissioner in Canyon County, and Terry Kramer, Class 19, is a candidate for re-election to his 4th term as a County Commissioner in Twin Falls County. Of course, there are others running for political offices around the state. Let us know if you are a candidate.
Congratulations to LIA Trustee Jim Miller, Class 29, who was named to a new position April 1 at CHS Primeland as Director of Sales and Marketing. Jim will relocate his office to Lewiston (CHS Primeland headquarters) and will be working with salesmen across the company to strategically grow CHS Primeland business.
A new little man, Henry Leopold, joined the Tiege Ulschmid, Class 32, family on April 22. Tiege reports that he and Carrie are adjusting well to having a second one in the house.
Christi Falen, Class 33, departed the U of I Extension position in Lincoln County and on March 24th started with JR Simplot Company in Boise as a Research Agronomist.
At a recent meeting of the Larry Branen Idaho Ag Summit board, Benjamin Kelly, Class 29, was elected co-chairman for the 2016 Ag Summit. Benjamin joins the Ag Summit leadership team along with fellow LIA grad, Jim Lowe, Class 31, co-chairman for the 2015 Ag Summit.
We received word this week that The Farmhouse Collection, Twin Falls - a business visited by several LIA class tours over the past few years - will be closing their operation in 6-7 weeks. Jon Conder, CEO, reported that the failure of the economy to return to normal is the main reason. Conder hopes to remain in the Twin Falls area and is currently seeking employment. Jon was named Friend of LIA in 2007 by the Foundation.
Update from the world of Brenda Waters, Class 20: “I am on a temporary assignment for 120 days in the Midwest Regional office (Omaha, NE) as the acting Deputy Associate Regional Director for Natural Resources, Stewardship and Science.” Brenda is wrapping up the Bevinetto Fellowship she served while in DC the past couple of years. Brenda was the former Noxious Weed Director at ISDA before joining the National Park Service system.
Congratulations to Galen Lee, Class 10, who is currently serving as Vice President of the American Sugarbeet Association and will be moving into the role of President within the next couple of years. During our recent visit to Washington DC, we visited the American Sugarbeet Association and let those folks brag about Galen and his excellent leadership in their association. It made us proud!
Keep your eyes open for a farm style windmill. We have an LIA Alumni looking for one. It does not have to be operable at this time. If you know of one looking for a new home, let us know and we will pass the word along.
The LIA Advisory Committee recently named new chairmen and vice chairmen for the following committees:
CHAIR: Jim Lowe, Class 31
V.CHAIR: Leah Clark, Class 26
CHAIR: Rob Troxel, Class 14
V.CHAIR: Valentin Celaya, Class 29
CHAIR: Pat Purdy, Class 30
V.CHAIR: Julie Pipal, Class 18
CHAIR: Julie Pipal, Class 18
V.CHAIR: Jim Miller, Class 29
CHAIR: Travis Jones, Class 28
V.CHAIR: Debra Ausman, Class 19
CHAIR: Pattie Jo Courtney, Class 29
V.CHAIR: Doug McIntosh, Class 19
Congratulations to Sara Schmidt, Class 9, who was honored at the Silver and Gold Celebration by the University of Idaho for her contribution and support of U of I. Great showing for a graduate of College of Idaho!
Sara also led the charge to bring the Ag Ed and Natural Resource Initiative before the Idaho Legislature. Sara was recognized by the Idaho FFA Association at their recent state conference with a special Distinguished Service Award for her leadership in this effort.
Recognized with the Honorary State FFA Degree at the State FFA Leadership Conference was Kim Royer, Class 24.
The Royer family celebrated even more last week in Twin Falls, when Kim’s son, Mitch Royer, was elected the new State FFA president. Mitch is a senior, and has enrolled at U of I CALS as a Food Science major for the fall. In other family news, Kaycee is graduating in May with her BS in Agriculture Economics and has been accepted into 3 different law schools. She is a VANDAL at heart, and will be staying right in Moscow at the College of Law. She plans to study Environmental and Natural Resource law, and intends to pursue a career in Ag Law.
Darcy Helmick, Class 32, has been promoted to Land Manager at Simplot, following the retirement of her supervisor. Darcy was attending a Public Lands Council meeting in Washington DC when the LIA group was there in April, and was able to join the group one evening for dinner.
In tracking down an email for Beth Parkinson, Class 27, we learned that she and her husband, Bing, are in Grenada where he is attending medical school. Bing has one more year of school to complete, after which the family plans to return to the U.S.
May 20 is a big day for Caroline Nilsson-Troy, Class 15, candidate for the Idaho Legislature in District 5, an open seat formerly held by Rep. Shirley Ringo.
Sympathy is extended to LIA Trustee Pat Purdy, Class 30, and his family in the passing of Pat’s Grandpa Bud Purdy, 96 years young. Bud was a leader in the Idaho cattle industry for many years and a major player in the creation and success of Picabo Land and Livestock. A service in honor of Bud’s life will be held on Sunday, May 4.
Afton Patrick, wife of Jim Patrick, Class 15, is a finalist for a position on the State Board of Education. Afton spent over 45 years in public education. The appointment will be made by Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter.
Kendra Waitley, Class 32, LIA Fund Development Director, has announced that she and Glenn Dustin will be married Sunday, May 25, in Nashville, TN. Father-of-the-bride Rick Waitley will be performing the ceremony.
Note cards have been sent to over 1500 potential candidates for LIA Class 35. Applications are due by August 1. If you know of someone who should consider being a member of this class, please let them know the application deadline. Candidates must reach their 26th birthday before the first session in November. Tuition for Class 35 is $2,400. Scholarships are available.
June 30 is the end of the fiscal year for LIA. If anyone has outstanding LIA bills to pay - from the auction or other activities - please be aware of this date and make the payments accordingly.