July, 2020 Newsletter
In this Issue:
  • Progress Report on The Fallow
  • Alumni Spotlight:
-Sharon Podlich
-Kate Delavan
-Sarah McClure
  • Class 42 Update
  • AgForestry-To-Go
  • Golf Tournament
  • June Donors
Message from the Executive Director
Matt Kloes, Class 36
Last month we announced AgForestry will lie fallow for one season. Instead of convening Classes 42 and 43 in the fall, we are using this time to innovate.

We are already busy retooling the traditional program. Enhancements will create more opportunities for skills development and introducing new concepts to the curriculum.
We have also built our plan to develop new programs. The infographic to the right outlines key steps and milestones. Now in the research stage, we are preparing for the critical step of stakeholder outreach and needs assessment. We must know what you, and your organizations, need from AgForestry if we are to create new and meaningful ways of achieving our mission to cultivate leaders who communicate, collaborate, inspire, and serve.
With your support, we are turning unprecedented challenge into unprecedented opportunity! We will keep you updated on our progress.
Alumni Spotlight
Where are they now...
I’m Sharon Podlich, a member of leadership Class 20, one of the lucky retirees, who just happens to be enjoying(?) my COVID-19 quarantine aboard a 44 foot sailboat in sunny, but very subdued, Mexico with my Captain--Chuck, Class 16.

I was involved in our orchard business during the harvest seasons, and with various “work from home” projects until 2003, when we built an on-farm store and cider press operation. In my contact with our customers, I felt the biggest impact I made to agriculture was one-on-one conversations explaining a small fraction of activities in the orchard. They often went away amazed at the amount of science involved.

Even as a retiree, I still jump at an opportunity to share the excitement of our orchard lifestyle and help others understand the level of knowledge, skill and art involved in being a farmer.
Read about the positive outcome that Sharon would like to see come from the challenges of COVID-19 at agforestry.org.

Since retirement, Sharon and Chuck spend their days exploring the world aboard the Top Cider
Kate Delavan, Class 42, named Coordinator of the Office of Farmland Preservation at the Washington State Conservation Commission
AgForestry talked with Kate about the position, her role in conservation and how we all can support agriculture and forest lands.

What will you be doing in your new role with the Washington State Conservation Commission?
I'll be working to address the loss of working farm and forest lands across the state. This will include working on conservation transactions, assisting local and regional stakeholders in their efforts to retain working lands, and providing resources to assist with farmland transition. 

What is the biggest challenge with what you do? What skills/strengths has AgForestry given you that have helped to deal with these struggles?
One of the challenges of this work is that it is often complex and slow moving while development moves quickly. When it comes to a conservation transaction, aligning the various policies, program processes, and landowner goals can often feel like putting together a large complicated puzzle. My time in AgForestry has helped me refine my communication style and given me a tight network of natural resource professionals I can call on for additional expertise.

What do you find to be the biggest reward with the work you have done?
The biggest reward of this work is opening up landowners to the idea of conservation and then helping them through the process. Many folks don't know conservation is an option or how to go about it. I'm able to connect them to resources that allow them to envision a future where their land stays in production.

Read more of our conversation with Kate at agforestry.org
In the News...
Capital Press, July 2, 2020
Sarah McClure, Class 31, was featured in a special Women in Ag section of the Capital Press. Sarah shared her thoughts on the impact of AgForestry:

"Being a part of AgForestry as a participant, board member and alumni has taught me so much about myself and my potential as a leader and business person."

"Through AgForestry I gained knowledge about the history and potential of natural resource industries in Washington State. Plus, I have met many people who, just by being around them, I feel encouraged to find my better self, personally and professionally. What a great organization to help build leaders, young and old - feeling blessed by all I have learned."
We want to hear about you! Tell us what you've been up to since your AgForestry experience. Email us at leaders@agforestry.org.
Class Updates
Class 42 Update
Hannah Poush, Program Manager
Class 42 begins its hybrid virtual/in-person Forestry Seminar later this month. Class members will kick off a week of webinars with a ‘Forestry 101’ video created by their own classmates. Other webinar topics include Public Perceptions, Land Management and Forest Management Regulations. The class will also hear from stakeholders in the Skokomish River Valley.

The class will meet in Shelton on August 6-7. This will be their last in-person gathering until we resume seminars in September 2021. Recently retired Port Blakely President, Court Stanley, Class 21, will host a fireside discussion on Thursday. The class will then enjoy a day of forest and mill tours, hosted by Green Diamond Resource Company and Sierra Pacific Industries.

Thank you Green Diamond Resource Company for sponsoring this seminar and for working with us to maintain COVID-19 safety precautions!
Upcoming Events
Tips and Tricks to Hosting a Successful Online Meeting or Webinar
Wednesday, July 29th, noon - 1 p.m.
Free, registration required
Mark your calendar for more AgForestry-To-Go!
  • August 26: Legislative Update with Senator Warnick
  • Click here to register
  • September 23: Asian Giant Hornet Update, WSU Bee & Pollinator Facility
  • October 21: Agricultural Labor Issues
  • November 18: Organic Farming and Soil Health
  • December: 2021 Legislative Outlook
16th Annual Golf Tournament
Friday, July 24
Apple Tree Golf Resort, Yakima
Only one spot left to play!

The AgForestry Class liaisons have helped fuel a challenge between classes to see who can generate the most cart and hole sponsorships, which are an easy way to support the tournament without playing.

Cart Sponsors
Tim Scherer (Class 10) & Mary Kangas
Juli (Class 36) & Mark Tuson
Dave (Class 1) & Jan Roseleip
Lori (Class 21) & Patrick Blau
JUB Engineers/Ben (Class 23) & Susan Volk
Gary (Class 16) & Barbara Karnofski

Hole Sponsor
Rob (Class 12) & Cleta Mathison
Class 29 is over half way to its goal of $600.
Class 40 is currently in a donation dash! At last check, they’d raised almost $900!
Thank you to our June Donors
Andrea Mann (15)
Chery (38) & Allan Sullivan
Chris (28) & Lisa Lunde
Chris Van Well (18)
Craig Crider
Douglas County Assn. of
Wheat Growers
Expedia Group
Franklin County Cattlemen's Assn.
Gary (1) & Kayleen Bye
Georgie Leinweber (3)
Guy (25) & Ruth Gifford
Jack (1) & Geri DeWitt
Jake (31) & Suzanne Holling
Joel Wachs (35)
John (32) & Diana Ison
John (8) & Renell Nelson
Klaustermeyer Farms Inc
Labbeemint, Inc.
Leffel, Otis & Warwick, P.S.
Lori Stonecipher (34) & Steve Schuck
Michele Youngquist (17)
Mike (19) & Jean Youngquist
Rick (23) & Karen Dunning
Stu (13) & Sheree Trefry
Sustainable Forestry Initiative
Tristan (32) & Joelle Klesick
Washington Asparagus Commission
Wendy (23) & Chris Sammarco
Yakima Fruit & Cold Storage Co