Application Available for California Ag Leadership Program Class 53

MONTEREY – Applications are now being accepted for Class 53 of the California Agricultural Leadership Program (CALP). Applicants should be mid-career growers, farmers, ranchers, horticulturalists, foresters and/or individuals working in other areas of California’s diverse agriculture industry.

The Ag Leadership Program, operated by the California Agricultural Leadership Foundation (CALF), is considered to be one of the premier leadership development experiences in the United States. Through the program, fellows learn leadership skills that help them expand their impact. Nearly 1,400 individuals have participated in the program and are influential leaders and active volunteers in agriculture, communities, government, business and other areas.

Over the course of the intensive 17-month program, fellows are immersed in numerous topics, including leadership theory, effective communication, motivation, critical thinking, change management, emotional intelligence and other skills and tools that contribute to improved performance. Along with individualized leadership development coaching, fellows engage in situations and discussions focused on complex social and cultural issues. They are provided with opportunities to build enhanced critical thinking skills that, combined with a broader perspective, help graduates guide creative solutions throughout their lives.

“As we open the application process for Class 53, we are committed to selecting a group of fellows who have the capacity to grow and lead, and share a commitment to California agriculture,” said CALF President and CEO Dwight Ferguson. “Our experienced-based curriculum, personalized coaching and focus on lifelong learning enables the development of leaders who make a difference in their families, communities, companies and ultimately our great industry as a whole.”

The program includes approximately 55 days of formal program activities. Four partner universities—Cal Poly Pomona, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Fresno State and UC Davis—deliver integrated, comprehensive and diverse curriculum at the seminars. Fellows learn from first-rate educators and subject authorities from many professions and backgrounds. As a valuable extension to the monthly seminars, fellows participate in national and international travel seminars that provide further opportunities to understand interconnected systems and governments, dialogue with policy leaders and compare and contrast cultural dynamics.

CALF invests more than $50,000 per fellow to participate in the Ag Leadership Program. The costs are underwritten by individual and industry donations. Candidates are strongly encouraged to talk with Ag Leadership alumni about the program and to attend an informational event.

Detailed program information and the phase one application are available online at agleaders.org/class53apply/. Phase one of the three-phrase application process is due no later than April 19, 2023. Individuals are encouraged to complete the application as soon as possible.

CONTACT

CALF Programs Manager Judy Sparacino / jsparacino@agleaders.org or 831-585-1030

California Ag Leadership Foundation Announces New Director of Education

MONTEREY – The California Agricultural Leadership Foundation (CALF) has announced the hiring of Dane White as its new director of education (DOE), effective Nov. 1.

White will be responsible for the California Agricultural Leadership Program’s curriculum – in coordination with the four partner university deans – and for delivery of the leadership content presented in the campus and travel seminars. He will work closely with the core faculty from the four campuses, as well as the foundation president and CEO. He will also support other CALF educational programs.

The DOE is responsible for carrying out the mission of the foundation to continue to deliver innovative and transformational leadership content. Through the program’s exceptional curriculum, fellows become lifelong leaders who individually and collectively act as a catalyst for a vibrant agricultural community and make a significant difference in the agricultural industry, their businesses, communities and families.

“As an alumna of the program, I am acutely aware of how important it is that we have a director of education that has a passion for education and leadership, who will be committed to growing leaders who make a difference,” said CALF Board Programs Committee Chair Correen Davis (Class 45). “I look forward to supporting Mr. White as he thoughtfully stewards our program into the future.”

White has a background in empowering leadership, learning design and instructional practice. A former high school agriculture teacher, he developed curricula that are used in more than 200 schools in California. He previously consulted to the California Department of Education and most recently worked for Vivayic, Inc., a learning solutions company. White earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural education from California State University, Chico.

White is a self-described student of learning philosophy, leadership principles and educational theory who seeks to learn from and leverage unique experiences in order to do good in the world.

“I love nothing more than developing people, and to do so as part of this program is a dream,” said White. “I’m eager to join the team, meet our fellows and alumni, and get immersed in the good work to come!”

Following a comprehensive transition period that ensures program continuity, White will succeed Dr. Peggy Perry (Class 9) and Dr. Robert Flores (Honorary Fellow), who have served as co-interim directors of education since May 2021.

CALF operates the California Agricultural Leadership Program, which is considered to be one of the premier leadership development experiences in the United States. Since it was first delivered in 1970, more than 1,300 agriculturalists have participated in the program and have become influential leaders and active volunteers in agriculture, government, communities, business and education.

52nd Class Selected for California Agricultural Leadership Program

 

MONTEREY – Twenty-four individuals have been selected for Class 52 of the California Agricultural Leadership Program, an advanced leadership development experience for emerging agricultural leaders. The new fellows will be inaugurated into the program on Oct. 6 at the DoubleTree Fresno Convention Center.

Through dynamic seminars during an intensive 17-month program, fellows will study leadership theory, effective communication, motivation, critical and strategic thinking, change management, emotional intelligence and complex social and cultural issues. Seminars are delivered by four partner universities: Cal Poly Pomona, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Fresno State and UC Davis. Fellows will participate in approximately 55 seminar days, including a 10-day national travel seminar and a 14-day international travel seminar.

“The California Ag Leadership Foundation (CALF) grows leaders who make a difference and go on to make a positive impact in agriculture, their businesses, communities and families,” said CALF President and CEO Dwight Ferguson. “We assemble a diverse and inclusive class of fellows who represent a broad cross section of the California ag industry and the state’s population.”

CALF invests more than $50,000 per fellow to participate in the program, which is underwritten by individual and industry donations. Ag Leadership is considered to be one of the premier leadership programs in the United States. Since it was first delivered in 1970, more than 1,300 agriculturalists have participated in the program and have become influential leaders and active volunteers in agriculture and other areas.

Class 52 Fellows:

  • Michelle Allen-Ziegler, Pactiv Evergreen LLC, San Clemente
  • Cornelio Blanco, Rio Farms LLC, Oxnard
  • Jeff Borum, East Stanislaus Resource Conservation District, Modesto
  • Grant Cremers, Delicato Family Vineyards, Salinas
  • Kasey DeAtley, California State University, Chico, Chico
  • Seth Fiack, Fiack Family Farms, Glenn
  • Andrew Genasci, California Farm Bureau, Oakdale
  • Amanda Gorter, O’Neill Vintners & Distillers, Paso Robles
  • Christopher Greer, Tulare County Agricultural Commissioner/Sealer, Visalia
  • Jeff Iniguez, Wonderful Orchards, Bakersfield
  • Mallvinder Kahal, Atlas Almonds, Madera
  • Anna Nakamura Knight, Old Grove Orange, Redlands
  • Arima Kozina, California Department of Food and Agriculture, Sacramento
  • Sean Landberg, Gallo Vineyards Inc., Turlock
  • Jeannette McClure, Rabo AgriFinance, Paso Robles
  • Chris McGlothlin, California Cotton Ginners and Growers Association / Western Agricultural Processors Association, Fresno
  • Anne Megaro, UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, Davis
  • Diana Melero, California Farmworker Foundation, Fresno
  • Danny Murillo, Agriland Farming Company, Madera
  • David Ogilvie, Wilson Farms and Ogilvie Merwin Vintners, Clarksburg
  • Reid Robinson, Sierra Gold Nurseries, Davis
  • Jacylyn Stokes, Stokes Vineyards, Lodi
  • Katey Taylor, Constellation Brands, Napa
  • John Wiersma, San Luis Canal Co., Turlock

California Agricultural Leadership Foundation Announces Brand Refresh

“Ag Leadership prepares, inspires, serves and connects effective leaders with a committed passion for California agriculture,” CALF President and CEO Dwight Ferguson said. “We believe our brand refresh strongly reflects our mission of ‘Growing leaders who make a difference,’ along with our values of integrity, excellence and respect.”

The new logo preserves some key elements of the foundation’s two previous logos, such as the diamond shape and agricultural imagery. It also features new elements – color palette and fonts, outlined diamond, extended row, and nickname and formal name – that give it a fresh, bold and modern look.

With the brand refresh, the foundation aims to raise the profile of its distinguished Ag Leadership Program, enhance alumni pride and engagement, inspire potential candidates to apply, engage and inspire sponsors and donors to invest, and increase media coverage.

“We are proud to have a new brand identity that underscores the long-standing reputation of Ag Leadership – dignified, enduring, respected, scholarly, exceptional, leading edge and trustworthy,” CALF Marketing and Communications Coordinator Meredith Ritchie said. “Same powerful program and alumni network with a powerful refreshed brand.”

Foundation materials and digital platforms, including a redesigned website, will be updated in the coming weeks and months.

Facebook post with new logo

 

Contact:

Meredith Rehrman Ritchie, CALF Marketing and Communications Coordinator
mritchie@agleaders.org / 916-708-3364

 

51st Class Selected for California Agricultural Leadership Program

Through dynamic seminars during an intensive 17-month program, fellows will study leadership theory, effective communication, motivation, critical and strategic thinking, change management, emotional intelligence and complex social and cultural issues. Seminars are delivered by four partner universities: Cal Poly Pomona, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Fresno State and UC Davis. Fellows will participate in approximately 55 seminar days, including a 10-day national travel seminar and a 14-day international travel seminar.

“The California Ag Leadership Foundation (CALF) grows leaders who make a difference and go on to lead in agriculture, their businesses, communities and families,” said CALF President and CEO Dwight Ferguson. “We recruit a diverse and inclusive set of fellows who represent a broad cross section of the California ag industry and the state’s population.”

CALF invests more than $50,000 per fellow to participate in the program, which is underwritten by individual and industry donations. Ag Leadership is considered to be one of the premier leadership programs in the United States. Since it was first delivered in 1970, more than 1,300 men and women have participated in the program and have become influential leaders and active volunteers in agriculture and other areas.

Class 51 Fellows:

Scott Berndt, RUSD Food Hub

Jake Cecil, Sunsweet Growers Inc.

Nick Escobar, G3 Enterprises

John Gardiner, Gardiner Farms

Matan Goldberg, Agriculture Capital

Tom Gore, Constellation Brands

Mylène Hermier, Duckhorn Portfolio

Carrie Isaacson, Broadhead

Betsy Karle, University of California Cooperative Extension

Miguel Lizarraga, Naraghi Farms

Victor Lopez, Yara North America

Ahna Miller, Driscoll’s

Kel Mitchel, Renewable Resources Group

Charlotte Mitchell, California Farmland Trust

J. Scott Petersen, San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority

Jessica Saltzman, Farm Credit West

Kevin Souza, Harris Woolf Almonds

Ryan Stapleton, Delicato Family Vineyards

Donglan Tian, Bayer

Marlene Velasquez, Rumiano Cheese

Darcy Vlot, Vlot Calf Ranch Inc., Cross Creek Farms

Will Weiss, Bella Vista Farming Company

Debbie Willmann, Index Fresh

Jarett Zonneveld, Alta California

Promotions & New Roles Announced to Support Strategic Plan

Judy Sparacino has been promoted to programs manager. Judy joined the foundation in 2007 as program coordinator, and has been a valued and critical team member supporting the fellowship program. In her expanded role, she will continue to support the fellowship program and take on new responsibilities associated with the fellow selection process and supporting the domestic and international seminars, as well as serving as the foundation’s archivist. Judy will also take on more duties related to our efforts to sustain and expand the D.C. and CA Exchange programs, working with our exchange programs consultant.

Deanna van Klaveren (32) has been promoted to alumni engagement manager. Deanna joined the foundation in 2019 as a part-time alumni coordinator, following many years of service on the Alumni Council (AC) and as a member of the board of directors. Her support of the AC and alumni over the past two years has been critical to engaging our more than 1,300 alumni. Deanna’s new full-time role will provide expanded service and opportunities for growth and connection to our alumni, as envisioned in the strategic plan.

Emily Lazzerini has moved into the new role of development coordinator. Emily joined the foundation in 2010 as enterprise coordinator and has been responsible for maintaining all donor files and records, amongst other duties. Emily’s expertise related to our donors and endowment funds has served an essential need as our foundation’s investment accounts have grown over the last decade. Her new role will focus critical support on the foundation’s expanding development program.

Darlene Din (35) has joined the team as exchange programs consultant, providing guidance and assistance to the staff and exchange programs committees, following many years of volunteer and contractor support to the foundation. She will also support staff and the Ed Team related to the domestic and international seminars, organize exchange activities and develop and propose exchange program expansion options in 2022, consistent with the strategic plan.

These new and expanded roles are critical to the foundation’s ability to meet our goals related to our strategic plan’s critical priorities, living our mission of “Growing leaders who make a difference,” embodying our values of integrity, excellence and respect and achieving our vision to become “Leaders united to strengthen California agriculture and sustainably supply the world.” We look forward to keeping you informed of our progress.

Feel free to contact Dwight Ferguson at dferguson@agleaders.org or (831) 585-1030 with any questions about these changes.