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27-29 August 2007 at the Holiday Inn in Riverton, WY

Speaker Biographies

Brown ~ Cunningham ~ Ehmke ~ Gomez ~ Green ~ Heald ~ Hewlett ~ Hiller ~ Jensen ~ Kedelty ~ Kurki ~ Malcolm ~ Minthorn-Good Luck ~ Mount ~ Peterson ~ Salatin ~ Sharp ~ Taylor ~ Teegerstrom ~ Tranel ~ Weeks ~ Weigel ~ Zimmerer
Photo of Joel Salatin

Joel Salatin
         Joel is a fulltime third generation alternative farmer in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley. The farm services more than 1,000 families, 4 retail outlets, and 30 restaurants through on-farm sales and metropolitan buying clubs with salad bar beef, pastured poultry, eggmobile eggs, pigaerator port, forage-based rabbits, pastured turkey and forestry products through relationship marketing.
         A well-known farmer and writer, his family farm, Polyface Inc. ("the Farm of Many Faces"), has been featured in Smithsonian Magazine, National Geographic, and Gourmet. Profiled on the Lives of the 21st Century series with Peter Jennings on ABC World News, his after-broadcast chat room fielded more hits than any other segment to date. As a writer, he has authored five books, four of them how-to types: Pastured Poultry Profits: Net $25,000 in 6 months on 20 Acres, Salad Bar Beef, You Can Farm: The Entrepreneur's Guide to Start and Succeed in a Farming Enterprise, and Family Friendly Farming: A Multi-Generational Home-Based Business Testament. His most recent release, Holy Cows and Hog Heaven: The Food Buyer's Guide to Farm Friendly Food, is an attempt to bring producers and patrons together in mutual understanding and appreciation.

Photo of Jolene Brown

Jolene Brown
Jolene Brown from West Branch, IA is a premiere professional speaker who brings humor, hope and helpful ideas for those who want to celebrate and learn skills for the human and sometimes humorous side of their world. Jolene will share insights into how humor can improve health, understand important issues and create positive relationships. She will also share how intentional behaviors can build support reach our goals while recognizing behavior differences between those who sustain and those who achieve. Jolene has made numerous guest appearances for television and radio broadcasts, and her work has been featured in several major publications. She is an honored recipient of the highest earned designation of professional speaking achievement from the National Speakers Association. She'll have you laughing while you learn!

Photo of Ron Cunningham

Ron Cunningham
Ron Cunningham is a University of Wyoming Extension Educator based in Fremont County and the Wind River Area. With responsibilities in agriculture, small acreage, horticulture, 4-H and the County Extension Chair, he has been employed with UW CES for 30 years. Ronís family includes his wife Kathy, three children, Amanda, Scotti, and Robert, and three grandsons. He enjoys his family, his work, snowmobiling, camping and working around the yard.

Photo of Cole Ehmke

Cole Ehmke
Cole Ehmke is an Extension Specialist with University of Wyoming Extension and is based in the department of Agricultural and Applied Economics in Laramie. His work covers agricultural entrepreneurship and personal financial resource management topics. Current projects include developing Passing It On: An Estate Planning Resource Guide for Wyomingís Farmers and Ranchers, available at, the 2007 Consumer Issues Conference (September 27 in Laramie),, and work with small acreage management, He grew up on a value-added grains farm in western Kansas and was a Fulbright Scholar to the University of Sydney, Australia, where he received his MS degree, and Bethany College where he received his BA. Prior to joining the University of Wyoming was at Purdue University.

Edmond Gomez
          Edmond Gomez directs New Mexico State University's Rural Agricultural Improvement and Public Affairs Project (RAIPAP), based in Alcalde, which is a part of NMSUís Cooperative Extension Service. RAIPAP provides training and assistance for minority producers in northern New Mexico. Project efforts help connect ranchers with state and federal programs, teach proper range management and monitoring, and help develop business plans for individuals interested in starting or expanding businesses. Gomezís background included degrees in agricultural biology and education and work experience as a rancher, adult education instructor with the Jicarilla Apache Department of Education and Extension Agent on the Jicarilla Reservation.

Milt Green
Milton Green has been with the University of Wyoming Extension since October 1978. He started his Extension career in Crook County, Wyoming as an Agricultural Extension Agent. In 1983 he moved to Goshen County as the assistant agriculture agent and 4-H/Youth agent. In 1986 he served as the Assistant State 4-H Leader while attending graduate school. He completed his MEd. in 1988 with a degree in Adult, Continuing and Community Education. He returned to Goshen County until 1995 at which time he accepted a position at Utah State University in Community/Economic Development. In 1997 he returned to Wyoming as the Project Director for the Extension Indian Reservation Program on the Wind River Indian Reservation where he remained until 2005. Currently he serves as the Area Extension Educator for Converse, Natrona and Niobrara counties as the Community Development Educator focusing on leadership development, personal financial resource management and rural microbusiness development.

Photo of Tom Heald

Tom Heald
Tom Heald is a Senior University Extension Educator of the University of Wyoming, serving Converse, Niobrara and Natrona Counties. He and his family live in Casper. Tom works primarily with small acre landowners on a variety of subjects but has focused his work to encompass hardy native and adapted plant species for rural areas. He also serves as the coordinator of the Backyards and Barnyards Magazine, a national award-winning magazine specializing in educating Wyoming small acre land owners about sustainable land practices. Tom is also involved in media productions to include TV and radio segments on gardening in Wyoming and helped establish another TV program on the natural resources of Wyoming.
Photo of John Hewlett John Hewlett
          John Hewlett is a Farm/ranch Management Specialist at the University of Wyoming, Coordinator of the regional WIRE program, and member of the RightRisk team and the Western Farm Management Extension Committee. He grew up in Washington State, where he worked eight years (four as foreman) on a large stocker-cattle/crop operation. John holds a BS degree in Agricultural Business from Montana State University and a M.S. degree in Agricultural Economics from Oregon State University. He came to the University of Wyoming, Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics in 1987. Since then he has been involved in a number of state and regional extension programs, receiving four Western Agricultural Economics Association awards for outstanding extension programs, two UW Cooperative Extension awards for creative excellence, the Jim DeBree Award for Excellence in Cooperative Extension, and one American Agricultural Economics Association award for professional excellence. John's current extension interests include integrated strategic management, risk management, enterprise budgeting, financial analysis, agricultural record keeping, and applications of technology in agricultural.

Photo of Joe Hiller

Joe Hiller
          Joe Hiller (Lakota) is the Assistant Dean for Native American Programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), Assistant Director of Arizona Cooperative Extension for Native American Programs, and Chair of the Watershed Resources Program in the CALS School of Natural Resources. Hiller directs and encourages CALS collaborations with Indian Country in Arizona by conducting extensive outreach activities with the stateís Tribes and Nations. He administers Arizona's Extension Federally-Recognized Tribal Extension Program (FRTEP), part of a national effort designed to more effectively deliver the university to reservation-based American Indians. In addition Joe serves on several national-level consultative panels and boards which interact with Tribes and the US government, states and counties. His academic expertise includes watershed management, water policy, rangeland ecology, agriculture and natural resources policy, and Indian Country issues with emphasis on land, water and natural resources. Hiller began his university career in Wyoming and had several field assignments and administrative posts both there and in Alaska. He served as the University of Wyoming's first Extension water specialist in the Department of Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management and was a natural resources policy advisor to the governor of Wyoming before moving to Arizona in 2000.

Photo of Tammie Jensen

Tammie Jensen
Tammie Jensen is a University of Wyoming Extension Educator, based in Niobrara County, Wyoming. Tammie also works in Natrona and Converse counties with responsibilities for Profitable and Sustainable Agriculture and to 4-H and Youth Development. She has been a certified True Colors instructor for two years and has found this program to be very beneficial in her professional and personal life, especially as she works with youth and volunteers. Tammie is very active in the 4-H youth program, highlighting Youth Quality Assurance Trainings and working with youth through the 4-H judging programs very rewarding for herself and those she teaches. She is also highly involved in Beef Quality Assurance trainings with livestock producers. Tammie has worked for the Wyoming Cooperative Extension Service for twenty-seven years. She and her husband Casey have a daughter Amber who is 9 years old and Caseyís two older children, Cortney, 25, and Cooper, 21.

(photo unavailable)

Leslie Kedelty
Leslie Kedelty is the Industry Services Manager for the Wyoming Division of Travel & Tourism (WTT) managing the In-State Development Program. She is currently working on developing training opportunities with the intent of creating a more visitor friendly Wyoming. The programs include a 1) Customer Service Program, 2) Destination Marketing Specialist Certification Program and a 3) Certified Tourism Community Program in conjunction with the Wyoming Rural Development Council. She also oversees the Turnout and Signage grant program for WTT that provided funding for 75 projects totaling $208,405 for the 2007 fiscal year. She is actively involved in tribal tourism development and served as a founding member and former President of the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association and was appointed to the Arizona Office of Tourism Tribal Tourism Advisory Committee. She also developed hospitality and tourism training materials for the Navajo Nation and the Ancient Ways Learning Center serving the Eight Northern Pueblos of New Mexico. Leslie represented the tribes of New Mexico and the Navajo Nation at premier travel trade shows such as ITB in Berlin, BIT in Milan, and World Travel Market in London during her tenure with the New Mexico Tourism Department and the Navajo Nation Tourism Development Department. Ms. Kedelty has fourteen years of experience in the hospitality and tourism industry.

Al Kurki
Al Kurki is currently a sustainable agriculture and energy program specialist with the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT). Since late 1994, he has served as the Western SARE Professional Development Programís Associate Coordinator. He currently designs and coordinates major program evaluation efforts for Western SARE. Al also works for NCATís national sustainable agriculture information service Ė ATTRA. His main area of responsibility with ATTRA is farm energy issues. Al has worked on sustainable agriculture issues for over 23 years. He has an academic and professional background in community organizing, project management and agency administration. He has a Master's degree in Public Administration (with an emphasis on program evaluation) from Montana State University.


Alex Malcolm
        Alex Malcolm is an extension educator with the Fremont County Extension office in Riverton. His responsibilities include agriculture and 4-H/youth.


Katherine Minthorn-Good Luck
Katherine Minthorn-Good Luck, a member of the Umatilla Tribe, represents the Northwest Region for the Intertribal Agriculture Council and is highly qualified to ensure northwest Tribes are informed of USDA program availability. Hired in 2000, she has continually kept Tribes updated on new programs as they are implemented, ascertaining if USDA is considering the Tribes equally. Katherine has increased Tribal participation in IACís Market Access Program, developed a PowerPoint presentation used by IAC outreach staff on Farm Bill Programs presented to over 28 Tribes and has facilitated regional Farm Bill hearings with 14 Tribes in attendance. Katherine was first hired by the IAC in 1996 as a Farm Advocate and served in this capacity until 1999. While a Farm Advocate she was trained by FLAG to assist Indian Farmers & Ranchers in foreclosure and facilitated the National Indian Irrigation Summit in Reno, Nevada. Katherineís main focus in this position was to assist farmers and ranchers in applying for USDA funding. Katherine serves as a State Committee member for the USDA Farm Service Agency, appointed first by the Clinton Administration and reappointed by the Bush Administration, and raises and races quarter horses.

Photo of Dallas Mount

Dallas Mount
Dallas Mount is a University of Wyoming Cooperative Extension Educator, serving the South East Area of Wyoming.  He and his family reside in Wheatland.  Dallas works primarily with livestock producers and small farms and ranches on sustainable land management practices including grazing management, livestock nutrition, and alternative production systems.  Dallas has been actively involved with the Small Acre Issue Team and is a creator of the High Plains Ranch Practicum, an eight day, six month school for ranchers.

Photo of Eric Peterson

Eric Peterson
          Eric Peterson has been an University of Wyoming Extension Educator in Sublette County since 1979. His University of Wyoming degrees are in Wildlife Conservation and Management and Adult Education. His recent work emphasis has been in Sustainable Management of Rangeland Resource, more particularly in Rangeland Monitoring.  Peterson has authored and distributes literature and an instructional documentary DVDís on the topic of Implementing Cooperative Permittee Monitoring programs.  The materials are in use throughout the West.

Photo of Rod Sharp

Rod Sharp
Rod Sharp is an agricultural and business management economist with Colorado State University Extension and the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics. He is responsible for educational efforts on the topics and issues of farm and ranch management. His professional interests are in farm and family financial management, business and enterprise analysis, risk management, and feasibility analysis of alternative enterprises. He chaired a multi-state effort to study entrepreneurial agriculture and forestry enterprises in the west. He is co-coordinator of the award winning Agricultural and Business Management Team at Colorado State University. Other projects include Risk and Resilience in Agriculture, RightRisk, New Gates Through Old Fences, Standardized Performance Analysis for Sheep and Cattle Producers, and Value Added Toolbox for Agricultural Producers. Rod was raised on a cattle and sheep ranch in northeastern Colorado. He earned Bachelorís degree in Agricultural Business and a Masterís degree in Agricultural Economics from Colorado State University.

Bill Taylor
Bill Taylor is a Community Development Extension Educator located in Newcastle, Wyoming. He has been trained in integrated management, facilitation, mediation, business management and counseling, conflict management, strategic planning and personal financial management. He presently serves as Weston County Cooperative Extension Coordinator, provides oversight to the county 4-H program, directs the county Master Gardener program, and provides programming for three counties and the Wyoming Honor Conservation Camp in personal financial management. He is coordinator of the Wyoming Black Hills Leadership Institute and is involved in a team project developing commercial CD-ROM-based courses for family business management teams. Bill received his Bachelor of Science degree from Montana State University in Agricultural and Industrial Arts Education in 1970 and his Master of Science degree in Agricultural Education in 1985 from Montana State. He taught vocational agriculture, industrial arts, and career awareness in middle and secondary schools in North Dakota and Montana for over sixteen years.

Photo of Trent Teegerstrom

Trent Teegerstrom
Trent Teegerstrom is a Research Specialist at the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Arizona. His main areas of interest focus around production economics for all commodities with special interest in topics concerning agricultural labor, farm/ranch finance, new technology adoption and risk management.

Photo of Jeffrey Tranel

Jeffrey Tranel
Jeff Tranel is an agricultural and business management economist with Colorado State University Extension and the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics. He serves as co-coordinator of the award winning Agricultural and Business Management Team. Jeffís professional interests include risks faced by farm and ranch families, accounting and record keeping, income taxes, and human resource management. He participates in many state, regional, and national projects including RightRisk, Risk and Resilience in Agriculture, Rural Family Ventures, and Ag Help Wanted. Jeff has consulted with the Byelorussian Agricultural Academy in its efforts to develop farm management curriculum for residential instruction and outreach. He has been recognized with numerous individual and team awards during his career. Jeff was raised on a commercial and purebred cattle ranch in south central Wyoming and northwestern Colorado. He earned Bachelorís and Masterís degrees from the University of Wyoming.

(photo unavailable) Kassel Weeks
Kassel Weeks (Eastern Shoshone) is Interim Chair of the newly formed Wind River Indian Reservation Conservation District. Kasselís work position is with the Wind River Environmental Quality Commission as Brownfield Public Relations. The Brownfield program is designed for cleaning up the environment after business owner leaves without cleaning the land of hazardous materials. The program is involved in educating the Tribal and non-Tribal community in maintaining a healthy and sound environment in which to live. Before working with Brownfield Kassel served in the US Navy aboard the USS Cochrane (awarded the Presidential Unit Citation for combat duty and support operations during the Vietnam war) and worked with the Bureau of Indian Affairs Forestry, the Wind River Environmental Quality Commission, and has been elected to the Eastern Shoshone Business Council.
Photo of Randy Weigel

Randy Weigel
Dr. Randy Weigel is a professor and extension specialist in the Family & Consumer Sciences department at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, Wyoming. He has been at UW since 1987 as faculty and administrator in the Cooperative Extension Service. He has a BS degree in psychology from Colorado State University, a MS degree in human development and family life from Kansas State University, and PhD in professional studies from Iowa State University.

Photo of Patrick Zimmerer

Patrick Zimmerer
The Zimmerer family farm was established in 1926, near Huntley, WY. Four generations of the Zimmerer family have worked the soil, grown crops and kept the family farm in operation. The farm has seen sugar beets, beans, alfalfa, corn and a cattle feedlot operation. With such agricultural diversity, a vineyard operation wasn't too out of the ordinary - even in Wyoming!

Brown ~ Cunningham ~ Ehmke ~ Gomez ~ Green ~ Heald ~ Hewlett ~ Hiller ~ Jensen ~ Kedelty ~ Kurki ~ Malcolm ~ Minthorn-Good Luck ~ Mount ~ Peterson ~ Salatin ~ Sharp ~ Taylor ~ Teegerstrom ~ Tranel ~ Weeks ~ Weigel ~ Zimmerer

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