SANTA FE, N.M. – Today National Farmers Union (NFU) concluded its 112th anniversary convention in Santa Fe, N.M. The four-day event drew nearly 600 family farmers, ranchers and fishermen from across the country and featured a number of high-profile speakers.
“This year’s convention was a tremendous success,” said NFU President Roger Johnson. “The convention is the cornerstone event on our calendar each year. Our grassroots structure is something in which we take great pride, and the feeling of family was apparent throughout all of the proceedings.”
Highlights included a keynote address by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack; a panel comprised of Colorado Agriculture Commissioner John Salazar, New Mexico Director/Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte, and Wyoming Director of Agriculture Jason Fearneyhough; and educational sessions on cooperatives, farmer veterans and the future of Social Security and Medicare. Through the fifth annual “Evening for Education,” approximately $40,000 was raised in support of National Farmers Union Foundation’s educational programming.
“Delegates took the policy adoption process very seriously, considering the needs of family farmers, ranchers, fishermen and rural residents,” said Johnson. “Policy discussion was thoughtful and thorough, and it is an honor to represent the views of our members.”
Johnson was elected to his third full term as president of the organization and Donn Teske, Kansas Farmers Union president, was elected the new vice president. The president and vice president are elected separately to two-year terms.
Delegates also adopted eight special orders of business recognizing 2014 as the International Year of Family Farming and setting priorities for implementation of the 2014 Farm Bill, immigration reform, trade policy, animal disease protection and research, the Renewable Fuel Standard, reform of the beef checkoff, and budget sequestration.