2018 State Women's Leadership Committee members are, seated from left, Chairman Debbie Roberts of Fayette County; Vice Chair Jo Ann Laney, Russell County; Secretary Kathy Gordon, Montgomery County; and Women's Leadership Division Director Kim Ramsey. Back row from left are committee members Nell Miller, Blount County; Lydia Haynes, Cullman County; Delle Bean, Calhoun County; Debbie Freeland, Mobile County; and Ann Whatley, Lee County. Not pictured is Mary Helen Benford, Chambers County.
The purpose of the Alabama Farmers Federation Women's Leadership Division at both the state and county level is to provide an opportunity for women to actively participate in the policymaking and policy execution activities. Recognizing those activities particularly suited to the talents of women, Federation women are encouraged to play a major role in the overall organization.
The Women's Leadership program is organizationally structured as an "arm of the board" and acts as a liaison between the board and the membership in helping implement policies and programs of the organization.
All projects and programs of the women have administrative requirements equal to all other Farmers Federation programs including the approval of the Board whether at the county or state level.
Functions of the Women's Leadership Programs
- The Alabama Farmers Federation is a family organization where men and women work together to develop and implement the policies set forth by the members; therefore, the functions of the Women's Leadership program are:
- To stimulate the interest and enthusiasm of Farmers Federation women in the organization and its programs thereby materially assisting with developing and carrying out policies.
- To plan projects and activities that will provide opportunities for women to participate and become involved in the organization.
- To provide information and education whereby Farmers Federation women can attain knowledge to help solve the problems of farmers through their organization.
- To surface and develop the "women-power" potential for the Farmers Federation, especially trying to involve the younger female population.
- To provide one of the channels of communication to the respective board of directors from the membership, thereby giving the "women's point of view."
Activities of the Women's Leadership Division
- The Women's Leadership Division hosts an Annual Conference to educate participants about timely agricultural issues and programs.
- The state and county Women's Leadership Committees work closely with the Alabama Ag in The Classroom Steering Committee to host and help educate teachers about agriculture each year.
- The Women's Leadership Division hosts annual Sewing, Quilting and Cooking Contests to promote Alabama commodity divisions.
- The Women's Leadership Division participates in the Annual Alabama Farmers Federation State Meeting and National American Farm Bureau Federation meeting each year as voting delegates and as members of the Southern Region Caucus.
- The Women's Leadership Division works closely with the Ronald McDonald Houses in Alabama by promoting Food Check-Out Week and the Pop Tab Program.
First-place winners in the Women’s Leadership Division contests at the 2016 Commodity Conference in Mobile are, front row from left, Baby Quilts, Anne Yancey Barrett of DeKalb County; Hand-Stitched Quilts, Ruby Nuss of St. Clair County; Tablescapes, Nyla Nealy of Choctaw County; and Table Runners, Elizabeth Usery of Geneva County. Back row, Machine-Stitched Quilts, Melanie Harville of St. Clair County; and Youth Table Runners, Victoria Balakitsis of Tuscaloosa County.
Why Should YOU Be A Member Of The Alabama Farmers Federation Women's Leadership Committee?
The Alabama Farmers Federation brings together women for a common cause. The more women we have involved, the more we can accomplish for agriculture and the issues affecting it as a whole. By becoming a member of the Alabama Farmers Federation and Women's Leadership Committee, you have an opportunity to network with other women from an agricultural background, enjoy many member benefits and work with committees on the county and state levels.