By discussing ways to balance agricultural water needs with maintaining vibrant communities, a Sonoma County woman earned top honors in the annual Young Farmers and Ranchers Discussion Meet at the California Farm Bureau Federation Annual Meeting in Reno.
Andrea Krout, who raises cattle in Petaluma and works as a district director for a Sonoma County supervisor, discussed the importance of continued improvements in irrigation technology, use of aboveground storage and of water reuse programs as ways to address the state’s water problems.
“Being in Young Farmers and Ranchers is something that is definitely important to me, as well as being involved in policy that affects our businesses and day-to-day operations,” Krout said.
A total of 15 contestants entered the Discussion Meet, in which participants are evaluated on their ability to express their ideas and opinions. Brie Witt of San Joaquin County was judged first runner-up in the contest; Amber Simmons of San Luis Obispo County and Alysha Stehly of San Diego County were the other finalists.
As the contest winner, Krout earned a $5,000 cash prize sponsored by Chevrolet, Farm Credit, Rabobank, Southern California Edison and State Compensation Insurance Fund. As first runner-up, Witt received $1,000. The other two finalists each earned $500.
Krout will represent California in the national Discussion Meet to be held next month at the American Farm Bureau Federation Annual Convention in Orlando, Fla.
The California Farm Bureau Federation works to protect family farms and ranches on behalf of more than 53,000 members statewide and as part of a nationwide network of more than 6.2 million Farm Bureau members.
Permission to use is granted by the California Farm Bureau Federation.