The Agricultural Leadership Foundation of Hawai‘i (ALFH) will soon open recruitment for its new class of leadership training. Applicants statewide are sought for the 16 month Agricultural Leadership Program (ALP) that provides leadership training for people committed to strengthening agriculture in Hawai‘i. Recruitment information and application forms will be posted on ALFH’s website in December of 2017. The application deadline will be January 29, 2018.
“Hawai‘i agriculture faces many challenges, but none as threatening as our inability to organize into a cohesive force and single voice. If you are a farmer, rancher, landscaper, or agricultural business person, the best investment you will ever make is the time you spend as a student in the Agricultural Leadership Program,” said Mark Cummings, Business Analyst and Staff Agronomist at Hawaiian Earth Products, ALP graduate, and past board President of ALFH.
The ALP will commence in May 2018 and conclude in November 2019. It is composed of a series of seven seminars and a two-week national trip. The four-day seminars are held around the State (see tentative schedule on application). The core curriculum includes training in group process and facilitation, expertly led by Donna Ching, retired Extension Specialist of the University of Hawai‘i. Educational field trips to farms, ranches, aquaculture and ag-forestry businesses, nurseries, watershed protection areas, cultural projects and other rural community endeavors are also essential to the program. The national trip includes one week in Washington, D.C. to study national and international issues, and one week in another state (of the class’ choice) to be exposed to agricultural and rural community systems.
“My time in the Ag Leadership Program has certainly opened my eyes to the diversity of agriculture in Hawai‘i, along with its many challenges and opportunities. I feel much more connected to agriculture in this state now, and have a sense that I can realistically make a positive difference in shaping some of its direction,” said Bradley Kai Fox, ALP graduate and aquaponics specialist at Mari’s Gardens.
“This program combines strong leadership content with exposure to organizations, agricultural operations and community networks, helping participants develop their path toward becoming the innovative problem-solvers and leaders that are critically needed in Hawai‘i today” said Pauline Sato, Program Director.