Local women expand their farm enterprise

Discussion-based workshops bring women together to learn from experts

Front (left to right): Jamie Myers, Farm Credit, Ellen Christner, Donna Von Bokel, Karen Cherry, Pam Schallhorn, University of Illinois Extension, Kimberly May. Back: Tina Zimmerman, Jennifer Franklin, Amy Hernandez, Carol Rovey, Megan Curtin, Vicki Zook, Nina Branum. (Courtesy of University of Illinois Extension)

TAYLORVILLE, Ill. — Annie’s Project, held at the Christian County Extension office in Taylorville, was a six-part course offered by University of Illinois Extension. The program empowers women in agriculture and offered farm enterprise education through discussion-based workshops that brought women together to learn from experts in production, financial management, human resources, marketing, and the legal field.

The six-session course covered: personality assessment, working with government agencies (FSA and NRCS), business planning for farms, basic financial documents for farms, crop insurance basics, marketing basics for selling crops and livestock, leasing farmland, estate planning (wills and trusts). The program also offered plenty of time for questions, sharing, reacting, and connecting with presenters and fellow participants.

Graduates included: Nina Branum, Regina Bunning, Karen Cherry, Ellen Christner, Megan Curtin, Jennifer Franklin, Amy Hernandez, Kimberly May, Carol Rovey, Stacey Shanks, Donna Von Bokel, Vicki Zook and Tina Zimmerman.

Each graduate received a certificate of achievement showing completion of Annie’s Project Level I. Participants also received a padfolio, pen, flash drive with program resources and handouts to accompany each session.

Presenters included: Ruth Hambleton, Founder, Annie’s Project; Peggy Hampton, Extension 4-H and Youth educator; Pam Schallhorn, Extension Community & Economic Development educator; Jamie Myers, Farm Credit; Nancy Handegan, Owner/Attorney, Handegan Law; Bennett Consulting, Matt Bennett; Matthew Slightom, Wealth Management Group CNB Bank & Trust; and Jennifer Dammerman, Risk Management Agency.

Farm Credit Illinois, Christian County Farm Bureau, First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust, and West Sand & Trucking, LLC sponsored Annie’s Project locally. For more information about this program, please contact the Christian County Extension office at: 217-287-7246 or email Andrew Holsinger, Extension horticulture educator, at

University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment. If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in this program, please contact our office. Universidad de Illinois ofrece igualdad de oportunidades en programas y empleo. Si usted necesita un ajuste razonable para participar en este programa, por favor póngase en contacto con nuestra oficina.

— University of Illinois Extension

For more news from Illinois, click here.

Spread the Word

Browse More Clips

Show Comments

Not a Member?

It's free! Register now to comment on and sign-up to receive daily updates on all the latest ag news in your neck of the woods!

Register Now

© 2015 Morning Ag Clips, LLC. All Rights Reserved.