Our last seminar in the Northern Neck area of Virginia marked the start of our second year in VALOR. We had the pleasure of spending time on a few impressive crop operations and in the beautiful Chesapeake Bay.
When you reach the half way point there is a sense of relief. You know what to expect and what is expected of you. We know what we need to do by heart at this point. Prep for the seminar includes looking over the schedule and being prepared to introduce our host and lead discussion. The more challenging task however seems to be packing the proper attire. (Business casual and business dress aren’t my normal work clothes.) During seminar our most important responsibility is to learn. We put our work and families on a slight hold and engage in the experiences around us.
Oh the experiences we have had! Just on the last seminar I pulled up a crab pot, met the mayor of Tangier Island, went on every level of a huge commercial fishing boat, and learned about the natto bean.
Right now I am sitting on a plane to Florida with the rest of the VALOR fellows. And yes, we are about half way there. We are looking forward to broadening our knowledge of agriculture and leadership outside of Virginia. Our schedule includes citrus and vegetable production, wildlife preserves, cattle ranches, and the US Sugar Corporation; all of which I expect will be very different from Virginia agriculture.
Come January, we will be in flight again. This time to Vietnam for our international trip. We will see agriculture very different from what we know but I expect we will see that leadership is universal.
As we journey into it second year we are excited for what awaits us ahead and thankful for the opportunities that we have been given!