Committees

2022 Ag Communicators Network Committees

ACN COMMITTEE DESCRIPTIONS OVERVIEW

ACN Committee work is active, engaged and moves the organization to meet our long term goals of growth and professional development for the ag media industry.  If you're an active member of ACN and you're interested in serving on one of these committees, email Gina Key at gkey@asginfo.net.  

 

ADVISORY COMMITTEE // By Nomination Only
This committee is chaired by the ACN president-elect and includes the current president, up to five past presidents (as much or as little as each individual wants to stay involved) and an affiliate member appointed by the chair and current president. They are a think tank for the organization. They work closely with the board of directors and other committees, because the Advisory Committee’s strategic direction and “advice” can cross all areas of the organization. They are typically responsible for working with staff to lead the strategic planning process and provide initial thought and direction on cross-committee initiatives.

FINANCIAL // By Nomination Only
This committee is chaired by the president-elect and is charged with working with the ACN executive director to ensure proper fiscal responsibility for ACN and the Professional Improvement Foundation. He/she reviews the annual review/audit of ACN and reviews other reports on the financial health of the organization. This chair has electronic access to all ACN financial reports.

NOMINATING // By Nomination Only
The Nominating Committee consists of the current president (chair) and the immediate past president. This committee makes member recommendations to the board – with the assistance of staff and other advisers – for president-elect and other new board positions.

AG MEDIA SUMMIT STEERING COMMITTEE // By Nomination Only
There are two ACN representatives on the AMS Steering Committee each year – we typically designate the past president and current president. Every other year, one of these also serves as the AMS Steering Committee chair (off years are led by a Livestock Publications Council representative). The years that we hold the Steering Committee chair position we also hold the AMS Program Committee chair position. That AMS Program Committee chair then typically serves as the second ACN representative, which means there are three ACN members on those years (chair + two additional representatives). The AMS Steering Committee chair is responsible for leading two face-to-face meetings per year, in the fall at the site of the following year’s event or a central location; and in the spring, prior to the National Agri Marketing Association conference. The chair works closely with staff to determine agenda, lead voting procedures as needed, work through policies and fee review, and offer recommendations on program ideas. The chair typically organizes a community service or philanthropy project that members can participate in during Ag Media Summit. The chair also is the keeper of the AMS Steering Committee Guidelines and should update regularly with meeting minutes and other materials.

Ag Media Summit INFOEXPO
The committee’s purpose it to recruit companies to participate in the Ag Media Summit trade show. The chair coordinates with those responsible for recruiting sponsors. They maintain lists, reach out to companies several times via email and phone, and are invited to attend AMS Steering Committee meetings.

Ag Media Summit PROGRAM
Every other year, when an ACN representative is the AMS Steering Committee chair, ACN is responsible for providing an AMS Program Committee chair. This person is responsible for coordinating the professional development sessions at Ag Media Summit including helping recruit members to serve on the committee. Work starts in the fall of the previous year, and he/she works closely with staff and the AMS Steering Committee to identify needs. The chair coordinates 2-3 conference calls with the full committee, delegates session assignments to members to identify topics and speakers (including tackling a couple himself/herself), follows up with individual committee members as needed and presents progress to the AMS Steering Committee on a regular basis. After topics are identified and speakers are confirmed, responsibilities and additional logistics are handed off to staff, which typically happens in February. The chair also typically serves on the AMS Steering Committee as one of two ACN representatives.

 AWARDS - DESIGN
The chair guides the organization’s Design Awards program including reviewing and updating categories and guidelines, ensuring the quality and consistency of the program, addressing concerns. He/she works closely with the awards program manager to accomplish these goals. He/she should also help publicize the awards program and encourage members to participate. The committee will create the script and presentation for the ceremony at Ag Media Summit. The chair typically serves as presenter for the awards at the ACN awards program during Ag Media Summit. The chair may also be tasked with other duties as they relate to design professional development for members, including recommendations for professional development sessions at Ag Media Summit and other meetings.

AWARDS - PHOTOGRAPHY 
The chair guides the organization’s Photography Awards program including reviewing and updating categories and guidelines, ensuring the quality and consistency of the program, addressing concerns. He/she works closely with the awards program manager to accomplish these goals. He/she should also help publicize the awards program and encourage members to participate. The committee will create the script and presentation for the ceremony at Ag Media Summit. The chair typically serves as presenter for the awards at the ACN awards program during Ag Media Summit. 

AWARDS - WRITING 
The chair guides the organization’s Writing Awards program including reviewing and updating categories and guidelines, ensuring the quality and consistency of the program, addressing concerns. He/she works closely with the awards program manager to accomplish these goals. He/she should also help publicize the awards program and encourage members to participate. The committee will create the script and presentation for the ceremony at Ag Media Summit. The chair typically serves as presenter for the awards at the ACN awards program during Ag Media Summit. 

 AWARDS - DIGITAL & SOCIAL MEDIA
The chair guides the organization’s Digital & Social Media Awards program including reviewing and updating categories and guidelines, ensuring the quality and consistency of the program, addressing concerns. He/she works closely with the awards program manager to accomplish these goals. He/she should also help publicize the awards program and encourage members to participate. The committee will create the script and presentation for the ceremony at Ag Media Summit. The chair typically serves as presenter for the awards at the ACN awards program during Ag Media Summit. 

AWARDS - MARCOMM 

The chair guides the organization’s MarComm Awards program including reviewing and updating categories and guidelines, ensuring the quality and consistency of the program, and addressing concerns. He/she works closely with the awards program manager to accomplish these goals. He/she should also help publicize the awards program and encourage members to participate. The committee will create the script and presentation for the ceremony at Ag Media Summit. The chair typically serves as presenter for the awards at the ACN awards program during Ag Media Summit.

ACN MEMBER SERVICES
The Member Services Committee is responsible for developing professional development ideas and programs outside of the annual Ag Media Summit. This can involve activities such as regional meetings and webinars. The chair works closely with other committees to ensure the professional development needs of members are met.

COMMUNICATIONS/BYLINE/PODCAST
The committee works closely with staff to coordinate editorial material for the newsletter. Specifically, with content for the professional development and social media sections, and member profiles and other features. 

ETHICS
The Ethics Committee determines what ethical issues affect members and brings these issues to the board’s attention. They are responsible for managing the Code of Ethics and any necessary updates. They handle member complaints according to the existing policies and guidelines document. The chair represents ACN to the industry, which may include participation in conference panel discussions and searching for additional speaking opportunities.

MEMBERSHIP
To recruit/retain/renew current and potential members of the ACN. This committee will also be responsible for providing direction and feedback on member services and how well they market the association.

FUTURE AG COMMUNICATORS
This committee’s purpose is to encourage and promote undergraduate interest in the field of ag journalism and communications, specifically working with advisers of Ag Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT) chapters across the country. The chair assists in reviewing curriculum as requested and may participate in the annual ACT conference. The committee is responsible for the application process and selection of the ACN/ACT Past Presidents Scholarship and James Evans Scholarship recipients. This includes working with staff to update the application form, making recommendations on funding, and interviewing finalists at Ag Media Summit to choose the James Evans Scholarship recipient. The committee also organizes the annual ACN Internship program, including the selection process for the host magazine (Editorial) and company/association (Marcomm), and application process for the interns.

INTERNATIONAL
This committee serves as a liaison between ACN and the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ), of which every member of ACN belongs to. The committee chair typically serves a 3-year term to provide continuity between ACN and IFAJ, and should be a working journalist. He/she is a member of the IFAJ Executive Committee and as such attends the biannual IFAJ Executive Committee meetings, held in January and during the IFAJ Congress. The chair (or committee members if chair delegates) should communicate IFAJ news to members, increase interest in the organization and its programs, and encourage members to attend the IFAJ Congress and participate in its programs. This committee is also responsible for developing contacts and fostering relationships with journalists in countries that are not necessarily part of IFAJ.

LEGACY
This committee is responsible for the nomination process and selection of the ACN Distinguished Service Award, ACN Lifetime Achievement Award, and ACN Fellows. This committee oversees the ACN archives held at the University of Illinois and other duties related to the history of ACN. The chair serves on the ACN100 Committee. This committee may also develop new programs to recognize both current and retired members.

PARTNER ADVISORY COMMITTEE
This committee recommends to the board regarding issues affecting partner members and includes the two ACN board members representing partner members. The chair and committee members may also be tasked with other duties related to partner member professional development, including recommendations for professional development sessions at Ag Media Summit and other meetings.

SPONSORSHIP
This committee works closely with staff to solicit sponsors for the organization to support ongoing programs and build relationships with Partner members.

 

Advisory
Christy Couch LeeChair
Julie Deering
Mike Wilson
Elaine Shein
Kurt Lawton

Financial
Mindy Ward

Nominating
Christy Couch Lee, Chair
Gil Gullickson
Julie Deering

Partner Advisory
Pam Caraway, Chair
Mary Jane Buerkle
Kristin Grantham
Des Keller
Alicia Kiedrowski
Stephanie Pruitt
Cynthia Clanton
Debra Davis
Joy Crosby
Marlee Moore
Samantha Carpenter
Shannon Linderoth

AAEA 100
Holly Martin, Chair
Kenna Rathai, Chair
Jim Patrico
Paul Queck
Den Gardner

 

Member Services
Julie Deering, Co-chair
Jennifer Shike, Co-chair

Communications/Byline
Ben PotterChair
Dee Goerge
Bill Brozak
Kenna Rathai

Ethics
Greg Horstmeier

Special Interest Groups
Matt Wilde

Membership
Jennifer Kiel, Co-chair
Jessie Bland, Co-chair
Joy Crosby
Julie Deering
Shauna Hermel
PJ Griekspoor
Kelly Schwalbe
Betsy Freese
Jamie Creamer
Ryan Tipps
Rachel Lium
Cece Utendorf
DeAnna Thomas

Future Ag Communicators
Laurie BedordChair
JoAnn Alumbaugh
Mary Jane Buerkle
Warren Clark
Sarah Hill
Courtney Leeper
Audrey Schmitz
Elaine Shein
Karen Simon
Brandon Souza

Sponsorship
Jessie ScottChair

Kelly Schwalbe
Karen McMahon

International
Elaine Shein, Chair
Karen Simon
Steve Werblow

JoAnn Alumbaugh
Carey Brown
Chris Clayton
Warren Clark

Gregg Hillyer
Greg Lamp
Kenna Rathai
Amy Roady
Owen Roberts
Sarah Mikesell
Katie Knapp
Mindy Ward
Amy Roady
Jill Loehr
Jamie Johansen

Legacy
Larry DreilingChair

Awards
Joy Carter Crosby, Chair

Photography Awards
Kerri Reynolds, Chair

Christine McClintic
Martha Mintz
Lorne McClinton
Steve Werblow
Jim Patrico
Gil Gullickson

Design Awards
Amy Gohman, Chair
Ryan Ebert
Lisa Lynd

MarComm Awards
Pam Caraway, Chair
Mary Jane Buerkle
Kristin Grantham
Des Keller
Alicia Kiedrowski
Pam Molitor
Stephanie Pruitt
Cynthia Clanton
Debra Davis
Joy Crosby
Marlee Moore
Samantha Carpenter
Shannon Linderoth

Writing Awards
Bill Spiegel, Chair
Des Keller
Holly Spangler
Claire Vath
Laurie Bedord

Digital & Social Media Awards
Josh Flint, Chair
Pam Smith
Pam Caraway
Bill Spiegel
JoAnn Alumbaugh

For a list of committee descriptions, click here.