Friends Week “Cause Matters”

(Ok, so I fell a little behind last week, and will be posting the last two friends from Friends Week today.)

Michele Payn Knoper is the woman behind Cause Matters

As I mentioned in my Farm Bureau post, Michele Payn-Knoper, and her business, Cause Matters, were a big inspiration for me to start this very blog.  Back in 2009, I was a part of Iowa Farm Bureau’s Ag Leader program.  It consisted of a hand full of two day leadership sessions over the year, and culminated with an incredible trip to Washington D.C.  I can honestly say my participation in that program made some awesome changes in my life and I made some friendships that will last a lifetime.

Any way, back to Michele (also fondly known as MPK)… she was the session leader at our second get together, and she challenged our group in many ways.  She introduced us to the power of connecting with the consumer about agriculture.  She helped me to see just how hungry people are to know where their food is raised and who is raising it.  She also shed light on the fact that facts aren’t as important as finding common ground with someone in a discussion.  Sure, facts are important, but no one is going to listen to them if they don’t see you as someone who is honest and trustworthy.

MPK challenged us to set specific personal goals for ourselves.  She had us create plans and steps for reaching out to interested consumers.  I just loved her passion, and it fueled me to use my love for writing and create this blog.  Obviously, her plan worked!  She recently asked me to guest post on her blog, where I chose to write about my personal experiences with “agvocacy.”

Love this foundation!

Then, last year, MPK was instrumental, along with a group of farmers, in creating the AgChat Foundation.  It all started on Twitter, with weekly conversations about topics important to farmers and consumers.  It quickly grew into a foundation, and by summer the first AgChat Foundation conference was planned.  I knew I had to go.  My blog was just getting off the ground, and I wanted to expand my social media skills.  And that’s what the AgChat Foundation is all about, helping farmers and producers to reach out and share their point of view with others through social media and other publicity avenues.

So, I signed up and went to Chicago last August.  I learned, and I met some great people from across the country.   Michele, among many other talented presenters, provided a ton of knowledge and inspiration.  Many topics were covered, and there was ample time for issues to be addressed one-on-one.  It was so successful, they are doing it again this year, this time in Nashville.  I would so highly recommend it if you are at all interested!!


3 responses to this post.

  1. What a great topic! I’m looking at AgChat right now!

  2. Liz, thank you for your kind words and reminder of why I speak. Iowa Farm Bureau Ag Leaders is one of my very favorite events of the year and I remember your class well. It’s so fun to see you go on and do more as an agvocate. It’s an honor to be included in your efforts!

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