American Agri-Women

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American Agri-Women is the nation’s largest coalition of farm, ranch and agribusiness women with more than 50 state, commodity and agribusiness affiliate organizations, united to communicate with one another and with other consumers to promote agriculture. AAW members... advocating for agriculture since 1974.

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American Agri-Women Fly-In to Washington, DC!


Women in agriculture from throughout the U.S. recently gathered in Washington, D.C., for the 36th Annual American Agri-Women (AAW) Fly-In to D.C. and the 27th Annual Symposium. After a two-year absence due to COVID restrictions, the group met with elected officials and policymakers to discuss critical issues, including environmental social and governance (ESG), trade and supply chain, land use, taxation, energy and mining, and the 2023 farm bill recommendations.
This year’s 27th annual Symposium, by the AAW Past Presidents Council, “Energy: Rebirth, Renew, Refuel,” featured panelists on renewable energy Kathy Bergren, National Corn Growers Association, Paul Winters, Clean Fuels Alliance America, and Hillary Leach, John Deere Electric Equipment. The Symposium moderator was Jeff Nalley, Agri-Pulse.
Also on the itinerary was the presentation of the coveted AAW Champion of Agriculture Award. This honor recognizes a member of congress who has displayed exemplary courage in presenting and supporting legislation promoting American agriculture, rural American lifestyles, and the U.S. Constitution. The 2022 recipient is California 1st District Congressman Doug LaMalfa.
Advocating for agriculture, the AAW Fly-In was an opportunity for AAW members to engage in a roundtable format with leaders from the USDA and EPA that interact and regulate farming and ranching. Members also met with their congressional representatives and senators to discuss how laws and regulations impact agricultural operations and businesses. The unsustainable cost of fuel and energy down the supply chain was included in these discussions, along with labor shortages and regulatory overreach.
American Petroleum Institute (API) hosted the group where members met with Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Amanda Eversole.
A highlight of the 2022 AAW Fly-In was the Special Event arranged by Mitzi Perdue and Ruth Jensen at the National Press Club. Members participated in discussions with national security experts on the Russia-Ukraine War: A Looming Food Supply Crisis and other significant threats facing the food supply around the world.
“These high fuel costs hit rural areas even harder because people often drive farther for work, healthcare, groceries, and other services. Yet, these are the same people our country and much of the world rely on to produce food, fiber, and renewable fuels,” stated Heather Hampton-Knodle, AAW president. “Our meetings are also an important way we educate legislators and policymakers.”


                                              Enjoy a few photos here


AAW President’s Message

Freedom in Action!

July in rural America. Does it get any better? One of our family traditions is to celebrate our Independence with fireworks, potluck and taking a break with neighbors. Enjoying the parades and festivities – including frog jumping, cardboard boat races, and ‘cornholes’ – in our rural communities reminds me of the pictures created by Norman Rockwell that illustrated the “four freedoms” cited by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt to inspire his fellow countrymen as they went to fight in World War II: freedom of speech, freedom to worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear.

AAW exercised our freedom to speak at our AAW Fly-In in Washington, D.C. in early June.  It was WONDERFUL to gather with fellow AAW members from around the country.  As we said at orientation, it was our time to play a role in restoring ‘representative’ government following a few years of COVID limitations.  Fly-In Chair Ruth Jensen defied the odds in planning the in-person event which included extensive meetings with key USEPA and USDA officials.  The Symposium on Energy planned by our past presidents and led by Karolyn Zurn was excellent.

Our special conversation with experts in issues related to global food supplies and security issues planned by past president Mitzi Perdue was enlightening.  And it was inspiring for our members to meet Congressman Doug LaMalfa, who was nominated as our 2022 Champion of Agriculture by members Rose Tryon-VanCott and Debbie Bacigalupi.  A highlight for the entire event was the AAW Foundation sponsorship allowing us to have Agri-Pulse broadcaster Jeff Nalley moderate the Symposium.  Jeff’s presence added depth and breadth to everyone’s experience and his interviews with AAW leaders continue to play on radio stations across the country and over the internet.

In the few short weeks since Fly-In, we have issued press releases (  on energy policy, our Champion of Agriculture and the need for the U.S. Geological Survey to list uranium, potash and phosphorous as critical minerals as well as a shout out for House passage of the Ocean Reform Shipping Act which was part of our supply chain priorities we shared at Fly-In.

Our Issue Leads for Climate and Carbon – Meital Stavinsky and Energy – Deb Whalen assisted in developing our final comments to the Securities Exchange Commission in opposition to the agency’s proposed changes on Climate Disclosures for public companies that could have severely negative trickle-down impacts on family farms.

Our Leadership Development Committee has put countless hours and days into developing a leadership program proposal.  They presented to the Executive Committee and are making further additions to the concept syllabus that your AAW Board of Directors will review in July.

Our membership committee continues to work on process improvements for serving members and managing data.  Meanwhile our VP of Education, Jacquie Compston, with assistance from Minnesota Agri-Women President Deb Whalen is representing AAW at the National Ag in the Classroom conference in upstate New York.

One more special opportunity for members will be coming soon, tentatively July 27th – Global Food and Energy Supply Conversation – delivered live in a zoom format so members can ask questions.

And there’s more to come…like Convention in November.  “The Mountains are calling” us all to Montana where we can renew friendships, hone our skills, dive deeper into policy and learn about regional agriculture.  You can register now at

These results have been accomplished while members are still leading their ‘day jobs,’ other service work, and well-rounded lives with family and/or friends.   Like our family, in June alone, many had already had their 4-H and county fairs, state FFA Convention, Bible School and were well into summer sports.  And a personal highlight, Wall Street Journal asked me to present the ‘realities of farming’ as part of a panel at the Global Food Forum June 27-28 in Chicago. (

All this activity in the context of current global events makes me appreciate our freedom more than ever.  My hope for each of our AAW members, who are already incredible people, is that we can experience freedom from anything that might be holding us back – be it regulations and uncertainty in the marketplace or things closer to home like insecurity, pride or fear of failure.  As we each evolve, we all become a stronger, more effective voice for agriculture together.

Thank you All
For ALL you do!


Heather Hampton+Knodle, President
American Agri-Women


AAW President was interviewed by Agribusiness Today.

Click here to view:

January, 2022 Agribusiness Today Interview with Heather Hampton-Knodle

Each year in November, American Agri-Women hosts a National Convention to bring members and affiliate members together for leadership and professional development sessions, speakers, and to host our annual business meeting.

Mark your calendar for the 48th Annual AAW Convention

November 2 – 6, 2022


Do you hear them? The Mountains are Calling, the mountains in Bozeman, Montana, to be specific. Join Montana Agri-Women as they host the American Agri-Women National Convention on November 2-6, 2022.
Montanans like to say our state is easy to get to, hard to leave. Travel is effortless because most major airlines fly into Bozeman, Mont., at relatively inexpensive fares. Traveling continues with ease as the host hotel, The Best Western GranTree Inn, offers a complimentary shuttle from the airport and a favorite spot for locals and visitors: Bozeman’s quaint yet vibrant Main Street located downtown, Bozeman. This option is perfect for attendees who wish to enjoy Bozeman’s unique foodie experience and niche shopping opportunities.
The convention will showcase the beauty of Montana and what it means to be in Montana agriculture. Before the usual AAW business meetings, Montana Agri-Women plan to start convention with style at the “Meat & Greet.” Notice the “meat” may look like an error, but it is the correct reference to the kick-off event. Attendees will be right in the middle of Beef Country, and what better way to welcome AAW members and guests than with some tasty beef treats. This “ladies’ night in” will also offer many unique vendors specific to fashion with a networking style show.
No convention is complete without tours, and Montana Agri-Women created a diverse educational tour during convention and post-convention. Both tours will give participants a glimpse of the western way of life, from barley to beef and everything in between. The post-tour allows learning a little about American royalty – The Copper King and underground tours in Butte, Mont. The post-tour concludes with an evening and an overnight stay at a Montana favorite, Fairmont Hot Springs.
The convention is packed with speakers between the tours, including a panel specific to reaching urban audiences and telling our unique agricultural story. Other speakers include experts on Montana natural resources, grizzly bears, and a featured inspirational speaker. Follow Montana Agri-Women’s social media for future speaker spotlights. During the AAW business meeting, tours are available for guests and spouses, including the Agricultural Science department and farm, through Montana State University and the Museum of the Rockies.
Arrangements for this convention would not be possible without the generous support of our Granite Peak partners, Alltech and Northwest Farm Credit. Alltech helps farmers and ranchers feed the world, raise healthy plants and animals, and protect the environment through nutrition and scientific innovation. Northwest Farm Credit works to improve the lives of customers and employees, the communities where they work and raise families, and the Northwest agriculture, food, and fiber industries that perform a vital role in the United States and around the world.
We hope you answer the call and meet us in Bozeman this fall.
Contacts: Meghan Foran,
Kellie Kittelmann,
Katie Yost,









AAW has partnered with Nepris

AAW has partnered with Nepris, to connect industry professionals with K-16 classrooms, so that students see the relevance of what they are learning in school. Nepris connects educators with a vast network of industry professionals to engage students in their learning, expose them to diverse career role models, and prepare them for their future.

Bridging the Gap

AAW Members can offer an “Industry Chat” on a topic of their choosing from their desktop to classrooms around the region. Multiple classrooms can listen in and ask questions.Professionals can view and respond to teacher requests for a speaker on a specific topic. Under this scenario, the industry professional will virtually speak about the topic requested by the teacher with one classroom at a time chosen by the teacher.

Getting on Board

There are benefits to both AAW and teachers beyond the convenience of virtually connecting with classrooms. Through the Nepris platform, AAW members can help build their industry brand, eliminate travel or logistical costs incurred from visiting schools, and the platform allows them to find speakers for their classroom that would have been unlikely to travel to speak to a class. In a time of increased focus on testing and accountability, virtual guest speakers provide schools with the ability to provide real-world connections without disrupting learning in other classes. All classrooms benefit from the expert perspective and real-world experience that industry professionals bring to the classroom. The possibilities are endless.

Signing up for Nepris is easy:

1) Go to

2) Sign up for a free account

3) Browse the platform and set up an industry chat

We are a force for truth, a reasoned, non-partisan voice for the agricultural community to the public.