Who should I nominate for AgGrad 30 Under 30?

AgGrad 30 Under 30 celebrates the young professionals making an impact in agriculture. We’re recognizing the movers and shakers across entrepreneurship, research and technology, agribusiness, advocacy, and production. You know talented people in the industry, but maybe you can’t quite land your finger on who you should nominate. Read on and see if anything jogs your memory.

They have a service first mindset.

Think of someone that gives back to the community and the industry. They value developing others. They aren’t afraid to humble themselves and no task is beneath them. You might find them with an apron around their neck and a ladle in their hand at the soup kitchen on a Saturday. They’re the ones giving up their evenings to listen to the tenth set of horse judging reasons for the local 4-H group practicing for competition. They might be active in their church, and by active I don’t mean rolling in late on Sunday morning for a seat in the back just to quickly sneak out.

Who do you know that’s the first to raise their hand when something needs to get done, even if it means shoving their own interest to the side?

They have something to say.

Think of the people who are on the stage at your state’s Farm Bureau Discussion Meet, who are tuned in to the issues in agriculture and aren’t afraid to share their voice on behalf of America’s farmers. The spotlight isn’t unfamiliar to them and they’ve probably been featured in their local newspaper, held a contributor spot in an industry publication, spoken on a farm broadcasting network, published thought-provoking research articles, or spoken on a TedX stage. But I promise you they’re not using their time in the spotlight to complain. They know the issues and they’re shaping solution-oriented conversations. They may even be the ones in DC behind the policy we’ll see in the next Farm Bill.

Who do you know that isn’t afraid to have a voice for the complex issues in agriculture?

This wouldn’t be the first time they’re recognized.

Think of someone who always strives to be the best. Back in college, perhaps they were elected for the Homecoming Court, they got the award for Outstanding Student in their degree program, or led their chapter of Alpha Gamma Rho or Sigma Alpha. Their seed company recognizes them for record yields and innovative practices every year. But these aren’t the people who just get lucky or barely make it by the skin of their teeth. They’re the ones who are showing up every day, putting in the effort, and truly earning the recognition.

Who do you know that always rises to the top when it’s time to hand out an award?

They don’t stay comfortable.

“The way it’s always been done” isn’t in their vocabulary. They’re probably not breaking the rules, but they definitely aren’t afraid to carve a new path and challenge the status quo. The unfamiliar doesn’t make them nervous, it actually fuels them. They’re the ones who are looking for opportunities to get out of their comfort zone, to experience different cultures, and to always be learning. They’re leading the way by implementing new tillage practices, experimenting with new cover crops, and finding new and better ways to produce. They’re flying halfway across the world to places with no running water, with language barriers, and with limited resources to share their agriculture expertise for the betterment of people everywhere. As much as they’d like to, they’re probably not binging Netflix on a Sunday afternoon. There’s work to be done and they know the sacrifices that are required for the sake of the desired outcome.

Who do you know that sees the bigger picture and isn’t afraid to be uncomfortable in order to reach it?

How do you nominate someone?

As you were reading, who came to mind? Did we describe you? Someone you work with? Someone you went to college with?

If anyone came to mind that you think should be recognized in AgGrad 30 Under 30, nominate them here. It’s a short form with just a few questions to help us get to know them better.

Any questions about AgGrad’s 30 Under 30 can be emailed to 30@aggrad.com. Questions about advertising or sponsorships? Email Tim Hammerich at tim@aggrad.com. And don’t forget to share about your nominations and spread the word about this program on social media using #AgGrad30!

Tim Hammerich

Tim is a strategic communications consultant, founder of AgGrad, and the host of the "Future of Agriculture" podcast. Originally from California, he is now based out of Boise, Idaho.