Lexington County residents Evelyn Shumpert, Catherine Porth and Frances Price were among nearly 80 women from 22 counties across the state who gathered in Greenville September 25-26 for the South Carolina Farm Bureau Federation’s (SCFB) annual Women’s Leadership Conference.

The group of women took in upstate SC as they learned how agriculture embraces the “Shake, Rattle and Roll” of the industry. They participated in workshops that showcased local agriculture, offered personal development, and provided tools to promote agriculture in their counties.

The program opened with Sherry Saylor, chair of the American Farm Bureau Women’s Leadership Committee, who inspired the attendees to be enthusiastic and proud advocates for agriculture. Danny Howard, assistant director of Extension Mentoring and Field Operations for Clemson University, talked about the unique farming operations and beauty of the upstate area. Elizabeth Reid Garrison Rasor and Catherine Anne Garrison Davis spoke to attendees about Denver Downs Farm, a leader in SC agritourism and an upstate gem. Stephanie Sox, SCFB Promotion and Education Division director, gave attendees the tools and confidence to “Cultivate Conversations” when talking to consumers about agriculture. Dr. Jennifer Tsuruda, apiculture specialist for Clemson University Extension, informed attendees “What the Buzz is all About” with her talk about the process of beekeeping and bee biology. The Monday evening banquet entertainment featured the shake, rattle and roll of award-winning Elvis tribute artist, Austin Irby. The conference concluded with a tour of the area, including the Roper Mountain Science Center and Lindsey Plantation.

“We are fortunate to have such dedicated women in Farm Bureau,” SCFB President Harry Ott said. “Without their enthusiasm and commitment, SCFB would not have the far-reaching influence it has. So far this year, these women have put in more than 3,500 hours of purpose activities around the state. We are extremely proud of their accomplishments.”

Farm Bureau Women at county, state, and national levels coordinate agricultural education and promotional activities. Their work includes supporting important family and agricultural legislation, youth programs, educational activities, leadership development and commodity promotions.

“SCFB women work hard to educate both students and consumers about South Carolina’s top industry – agribusiness,” said Ag Literacy and Women’s Program director, Vonne Knight. “Their knowledge of and interest in family farms contributes so much to the organization, as they work for the future success of agriculture in our state.”

The SC Farm Bureau Federation is a non-profit membership organization formed to promote and preserve the work of family farmers and rural lifestyles across the state. In exchange for their annual dues and financial support of education, promotion and lobbying efforts on behalf of agriculture and family farmers, Farm Bureau members are entitled to discounts and access to a number of quality products.

The organization serves more than 100,000 member families in 47 chapters and has been around since 1944. Persons interested in supporting agricultural education are encouraged to contact their county Farm Bureau office or the South Carolina Farm Bureau Federation at www.scfb.org for additional information.

Lexington County residents Evelyn Shumpert, Catherine Porth and Frances Price (L to R) were among nearly 80 women from 22 counties across the state who gathered in Greenville September 25-26 for the South Carolina Farm Bureau Federation’s (SCFB) annual Women’s Leadership Conference to participate in workshops that showcased local agriculture, offered personal development, and provided tools to promote agriculture in their counties.