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JOINT EFFORT BOOSTS APS' BENEFITS


Editor's Note:
The American Agricultural Editors' Association, Livestock Publications Council and former APA: The Association of Leading Ag Media Companies have worked together to make the 2002 Agricultural Publications Summit a success. The following is an update from each of the contributing organizations.

APA/ABM AGRI COUNCIL


Chuck Roth, Chairman

APA joins AAEA and LPC in welcoming you to the largest annual gathering of agricultural media in the world. We are pleased to be one of the organizers of this networking and professional development conference.

Agriculture and the organizations serving farmers, ranchers and marketers are experiencing an era of rapid change. APA is experiencing change too.

Beginning with this meeting, APA officially becomes the Agri Council of the Association of American Business Media (the ABM Agri Council). ABM will offer ag media companies benefits that were not available when APA was a small, stand-alone association. The additional resources will help us offer even stronger support for future APS conferences.

Meanwhile, the ABM Agri Council remains committed to the growth and development of the Agricultural Publications Summit as the premier summer event in our industry. It serves as an annual gathering for people and professionals interested in agriculture. It offers an opportunity for old friends to gather and for new friends to meet. Also, it provides professional development leading to better communications with farmers and ranchers.

AMERICAN AGRICULTURAL EDITORS' ASSOCIATION

Willie Vogt, President

We are constantly on the lookout for ways to do our jobs better, whether that's through help from peers, new technology or more education. The Agricultural Publications Summit has grown into the leading event for professional improvement for our industry. We welcome members to this year's event and know they'll get plenty out of the 2002 program.

In an industry that faces the changes we're seeing these days, an event of the size and caliber of APS remains important. Farmers and ranchers still count on the editors of AAEA and LPC to provide the latest information to help guide them through difficult times. We can only do that if we're up-to-speed on new ways to communicate, better ways to write and systems that offer our readers better access to the content we provide.

A cursory look at the program for this year's Reno event shows that we'll have dozens of sessions you can use to boost your writing knowledge, improve your computer skills and even enhance your design acumen. Of course, we're not saying that an editor who sits in on a design seminar is going to win any arguments with an art director in the near future, but at least you'll both be speaking the same language.

As president of AAEA this year, I've watched our industry contract. I've seen publishers make hard choices as the advertising market restructures. And I believe ag journalists need the tools offered at APS to survive in this business. But it's how we move forward from this event that will count.

This is a vital industry that has been dealing with change since the first tractor company mergers of the early 1900s. We're used to upheaval, since in the past 10 years farmers have undergone more change than perhaps any other industry, even technology. APS offers attendees important information that becomes more vital as our industry continues its change.

In the manufacturing business, the key to success these days is continuous improvement. Every process and system is under review at all times. The same is true at the publications with members in AAEA and LPC. We're looking for better ways to compete, to inform readers and maintain our publications. It is at these peer-group events that we learn more about how to keep this industry healthy and alive.

This year, perhaps like no other, there's an element of chance in this business. It's fitting that we come to the "Biggest Little City in the World" to recharge our batteries for the months ahead. We hope those attending this year's Summit find it as valuable as in the past, and we look forward to continued success.

LIVESTOCK PUBLICATIONS COUNCIL

Lea Weinheimer, President

The continued success of the Agricultural Publications Summit is a feather in the hat for the endless roster of volunteers from the three joint organizations. This group of busy volunteers is headed up by the APS steering committee. The steering committee is challenged each year with absorbing ideas from members, as well as cultivating their own and turning them into what we enjoy as the Summit. This year is no exception; the steering committee has once again rolled up its sleeves and put together an excellent forum of speakers and activities.

The Livestock Publications Council members have reaped the benefits from the successful APS' over the last three years. The joint meeting has allowed participants to enjoy educational and entertaining programs conducted by some of the industry's top leaders. Plus, we've been able to bring in renowned figures as keynote speakers, further enhancing the value of the event. The LPC membership has also enjoyed the camaraderie established among joint organizations' members. Fellowship is an important aspect of this gathering and each year the participating groups draw closer together.

This year LPC members are looking forward to the participation of the Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT) chapters from across the country. These young individuals are an impressive group and we are fortunate that they are going to be a part of this year's Summit. Please take the time to meet and visit with them. They are the future of this industry.

LPC has had a good year. Our latest LPC roster totaled more than 200 members - an all-time high. LPC Executive Director Diane Johnson continues to help generate new ideas for the organization and exerts a great effort in carrying out projects. We strive to be a progressive group with a strong commitment to membership services and professional development. AM


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