Ag Group Chooses Birthplace Ranch For Service Project

taggingIt was roundup day at Will Rogers Birthplace Ranch near Oologah when members of Class XVI of the Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program visited on a tour of northeast Oklahoma in November.
Class participants helped Ranch Manager Ryan Nelson work the new crop of longhorn cattle — for many it was a first — worming, vaccinating, ear-tagging and branding.
“It was a great group to work with,” said Nelson. “Anyone with an opportunity to go through the class is fortunate, a neat group, a neat project,” he said.
Following dinner at the Ranch, the group toured Will Rogers Memorial Museum with Steve Gragert, director. Among sponsors of the tour and dinner included Jim Shelton of Vinita, Oklahoma Soybean Board, RCB Bank, Farm Credit of Northeast Oklahoma, 1st National of Vinita and P&K Equipment.
There are 27 participants in the 18-month class of agriculture producers or related professions from all across Oklahoma. During a three-day swing across northeast Oklahoma, they stopped at the Port of Catoosa, Swan’s Dairy, Nabatak, J-M Mushroom Farm in Miami, Newt Graham Lock and Dam near Inola, and Pensacola Dam on Grand Lake. They also visited Scott Johnson’s Soybean Farm, Hibbard Poultry Farm, and Dry Gulch USA in Adair before winding up at Whispering Vines Vineyard and Winery in Tulsa.
Ginger Reimer, Claremore, education director for the Oklahoma Soybean Board, is a member of the class representing soybean producers.
shotsShe said OALP meets for 12 seminars across the state including the state Capitol and time at the nation’s Capitol. They are making plans for their international experience to South Africa in February.
A community service project is a component each time. Seminars are planned to various leading agriculture and economic industries and production areas.
There have been several husband and wife teams through the years, Reimer said. She is familiar with the program through her husband, Rick, director of Northeast Tech Center-Claremore. He was in Class V (1991-1992) on a journey that took them to Central Europe not long after the Berlin Wall came down. Other classes have toured through Ireland, Spain, Morocco, China, Brazil and Australia, among other countries.
Applications are being taken now for Class XVII to begin mid-2014. Inquiries can be made to Edmond Bonjour, Director Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program, 321 Wes Watkins Center, Stillwater, OK 74078-8096 or by calling 405-744-8134.

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