2013 Holiday Letter

Dear Friends,

 

As 2012 draws to a close, the Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC) asks everyone to take time to remember those who have served, are still serving, and those who are deployed. This year we also give thanks to the growing number of military veterans that continue to serve their country by growing our food.

 

Army Captain Jamie Critelli served many overseas deployments, including Iraq, before returning home in 2006 to start Floral Beauty Nursery in New York State. His poinsettias, seen above, will adorn many homes this Christmas season. Jamie is currently a candidate for our Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund.

 

Marine veteran Jon Olson was medically discharged after numerous combat tours, including Iraq. He returned to the Olson-Davis family farm in Pecan Gap, Texas, to bring back a family legacy of pecan production dating back to the 1800’s. As a grantee in the Farmer Fellowship Fund, Jon will begin to grow his pecan business. For the second year in a row our Fellowship Fund will distribute more than $100,000 in small grants to Farmer Veterans, many of whom have overcome their wounds of war through farming.

 

This past July, FVC held the first-ever national gathering for women veterans in agriculture. Our conference, “Empowering Women Veterans: Business, Agriculture & Well-Being”, was funded by the USDA Risk Management Agency, and was very well received by the women veterans who attended. We celebrate our growing number of women veterans and look forward to more women veteran specific programming in 2013.

 

The Farmer Veteran Coalition prides itself in how much we do with how little. Not only has our staff grown, but we will be opening new chapters and offices in other parts of the country. In 2013 we are also launching our new website and online forum, as well as a used farm equipment donation program.

 

During the first five years FVC worked to make farming a visible opportunity for veterans. Our focus going forward is helping and guiding those who have chosen agriculture, to successfully launch their businesses.

 

If you are able to help us, it is between now and the end of the year that we are in most need of your support. Having funds to start the New Year will allow FVC to grow our projects, maintain our staff and help those who have given so much, as they find a new way to continue serving.

 

Sincerely,

 

The FVC Staff

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    Our own Michele Pfannenstiel, President FVC Maine, made a visit to Dick Royer's Farm last week. While there she was able to snap a few pictures of him and his wife.  Earlier in the month we were able to connect him with with Chet Bennetts, Director of Farm Development, to assist in business planning for his farm.

     

    "I just received the one page business plan from Chet. He told me he was sending it to me what I thought was a form or a sheet of paper to fill out turns out to be a 90+ page workbook and a cd! Wow I am so glad to have found you guys! I finally think I maybe on the right path to getting my farm on a good footing. Thank you so so much for your help..." 

    - Dick Royer

     

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  • Mar 18th, 2014
  • object(WP_Post)#374 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(2320) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "9" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2014-03-02 08:13:45" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2014-03-02 14:13:45" ["post_content"]=> string(34748) " The Farmer Veteran Coalition cordially invites all women veterans, active duty, and women farming with veterans to participate in the Empowering Women Veterans Conference. This event will focus on equipping women veterans with the business and farming tools they need to begin and achieve their entrepreneurial goals. Over 100 women will be brought together from around the country to make new friends and form community. Register today! Join us for this unique opportunity by registering here: Conference Registration" ["post_title"]=> string(80) "You are Invited to the Southern California Empowering Women Veterans Conference!" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(70) "you-are-invited-to-the-2nd-annual-empowering-women-veterans-conference" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2014-05-02 22:38:50" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2014-05-03 03:38:50" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(32) "http://www.farmvetco.org/?p=2320" ["menu_order"]=> int(0) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "5" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } NULL
  • Mar 2nd, 2014
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    Frederick “Fred” John Fleming, whose namesake includes both sets of great-grandfathers, is now entering the latest chapter in his lucrative agribusiness career: the hand-off to the next generation. Fred is ready to train and assist someone in taking over his 32-year old seed company, Reardan Seed Co., Inc. located in the state of Washington. The succession will not be following lineage lines.

     

    The two Fleming adult children, now in successful professions other than farming (healthcare and education), are not interested in any of the four agribusinesses Fred and his wife, Vicki, manage: the Lazy Y J Farms (est. 1888); Shepherd’s Grain; the Reardan Seed Co., Inc.; and their latest start-up, Rhizoterra, Inc., a soil preparation company.

     

    Fred, always a forward-thinker, is a step-ahead of the farming crisis: a third of US farmers are older than 65 and retiring. His plan of action is to reach out now and make an investment with an individual who is interested in agriculture. Fred has already proven successful at integrating a non-family member into the management of the Lazy Y L Farms business. Now the Fleming’s are reaching out to Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC) in their search for a hard-working individual to manage and, eventually, over time own Reardon Seed.

     

    Why FVC? Fred says it best: “I’m a veteran, as were both my parents, and I know that a veteran will have the necessary drive to work hard.” A hardworking individual isn’t all Fred is looking for because the right fit for Reardan Seed also includes a background and strong interest in agriculture, not necessarily farming, but perhaps experience in life sciences or agronomy.

     

    If you’re interested in making a lifelong commitment to building an already successful ag-related business and have fun doing it, then you want to talk to Fred. He can be reached at: fredjf2@aol.com.

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  • Feb 28th, 2014