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Editor's Note: The American Agricultural Editors’ Association, Livestock Publications Council and APA: The Association of Leading Ag Media Companies have joined together to make the 2001 Agricultural Publications Summit possible. The following is general information on the APS and facts from each of the contributing organizations.

American Agricultural Editors’ Association
Larry Dreiling, President

American Agricultural Editors’ Association (AAEA) members who serve on the Agricultural Publications Summit (APS) steering committee worked hard to make the approaching APS in Grand Rapids, Mich., a "grand time" for all. Many thanks to program chair Jennifer Morrill and her committee for the fantastic guest speaker and workshop agenda. Space in the InfoExpo exhibit hall, once again, has sold out with the hard work of chair Betsy Freese and her committee. At InfoExpo, editors can learn what’s new in the industry, and agri-marketers can learn what’s top-of-mind for ag editors and writers these days.

The Livestock Publications Council (LPC), American Agricultural Editors’ Association (AAEA) and APA: The Association of Leading Ag Media Companies have come together with a commonality of purpose. There are no boundaries between us when our steering committee gets together. There is only one thing in mind and that is producing the best possible program for all our members. It is a marvelous thing to see, and I know it’s going to produce something terrific for everyone to learn from and enjoy when all three groups get together for a "grand time" in Grand Rapids.

About the American Agricultural Editors’ Association:

Founded in 1921, AAEA serves as a forum for an open exchange of ideas among colleagues in an environment that fosters professional excellence. AAEA provides opportunities for professional development and networking for its membership of agricultural editors, writers and photojournalists. From the annual APS, to regional workshops, to a monthly newsletter, AAEA provides ag communications professionals the tools to hone their skills. Awards programs recognize excellence in writing and photography and provide constructive feedback for improvement. Writers and photographers of all ages and experience levels find common ground in AAEA. Affiliate members include representatives of agri-businesses, public relations firms and commodity organizations.

AAEA Officers

Larry Dreiling, President
Willie Vogt, Vice President & President-Elect
Karen McMahon, Immediate Past President
Dan Crummett (’03)
Gil Gullickson (’01)
Debby Hartke (‘03)
Des Keller (’01)
Greg Lamp (’02)
Amy McDonald (’01)
JoAnn Wilcox (’02)
Executive Secretary/Treasurer
Den Gardner, 120 W. Main St., P.O. Box 156, New Prague, MN 56071; 952/758-6502;

Livestock Publications Council
Greg Henderson, President

The success of the APS has exceeded everyone’s expectations. The joint efforts of the LPC, AAEA and APA created a premier event for ag journalists from both the livestock and crop industries. Members from all organizations benefit from outstanding professional development seminars and lively social activities that promote networking between members.

The concept for a joint meeting was founded on the idea that the whole could be greater than the sum of its parts (AAEA and LPC). Both organizations were holding annual conferences and both were soliciting sponsorship money, often from the same companies. The joint efforts of the groups have secured additional sponsorship money, provided for improved professional development sessions and provided members with additional benefits. As a joint meeting, the APS eliminated a meeting, which aided individuals who were members of both LPC and AAEA.

Several members of all three groups worked on the development of the APS at least three years before the initial Summit was held in Denver in 1999. Common ground was found in the desire of those leaders to serve their members. And serving their members, they determined, meant providing the best professional improvement sessions possible, while holding costs to a minimum. Both AAEA and LPC have members who are self-employed, so registration costs and hotel expenses were a major consideration. Additional sponsorship money through the APS has helped achieve that goal.

About the Livestock Publications Council:

LPC is an international organization serving the livestock communications industry. Founded in 1974, this nonprofit organization provides a forum through which members can obtain information on how to improve their overall effectiveness and value to both readers and advertisers. LPC also functions as an information exchange by allowing members to discuss common problems with peers and arrive at workable solutions. Writing contests and critiques, awards programs, and seminars and workshops all contribute to members’ professional development and networking opportunities. Membership, which is by publication or publishing company, is open to all interested publication personnel.

LPC Officers
Greg Henderson, President
Lea Weinheimer, First Vice President
Wes Ishmael, Secretary/Treasurer
Jim Jennings, Immediate Past President

Lisa Bryant (’03)
Rick Cozzitorto (’01)
Lynn Gordon (’01)
Eric Grant (’01)
Kyle Haley (’02)
Shauna Hermel (’03)
Sharla Ishmael (’02)
Jerilyn Johnson (’03)
Lori Maude (’02)
Clifford Mitchell (‘01)
Joe Roybal (’03)

Executive Director
Diane E. Johnson, 910 Currie St., Fort Worth, TX 76107; 817/336-1130;

APA: The Association of Leading Ag Media Companies
Ron Sorensen, President

The primary reason APA is involved in APS is that one of our goals as an organization is to promote the value of print media along with all the other services we provide. We view APS as an opportunity to reinforce the value of this tremendous communications tool.

The APS also gives us an opportunity to connect with agri-business professionals who often don’t get intimately involved in media-related efforts. It gives agri-marketers a chance to meet with editors of various publications.

We’re very happy with the way the event has taken off in three years. Long term, we see this becoming an extremely important event not only in communications, but also in the whole of agriculture for what it represents-a chance to be around those who are communicating with people in every facet of agriculture in a daily, weekly or monthly format.

We’ve had a tendency within APA and AAEA to have the editorial and business sides highly segmented. But there are also some reasons and events where the two sides need to work together, and APS is one of those. The remarkable thing is that so many of us who compete so aggressively with each other are able to get along for at least a few hours and accomplish some good things.

About APA:

APA has evolved over the years from being a clearinghouse of general information to promoting the value of the information our member companies provide to the ag industry. The services we provide have changed also, from paper publications only, to publishing on the Internet and producing industry shows and conferences.

When APA was founded some 80-plus years ago, its primary role was to allow publications to deal jointly with production- and circulation- related matters. Most publications at that time served small areas - a state or part of a state - and didn’t compete with each other. As time went on, APA began to promote the value of print media and created the "power of print" campaign. It also became involved in other activities, including sponsoring a VIP breakfast for ag leaders at the FFA meeting each year and conducting ag trends research. AM

APA Member Representatives:
Agribusiness Division of PRIMEDIA Intertec, Ron Sorensen, Publisher
American Christmas Tree Journal,Don Evashenko, Publisher
CPM Magazine, Barry Brown, Publisher
Doane Agricultural Services, Bill Schuermann, VP/Group Publisher
Farm Journal Corporation, Andy Weber, President/CEO
Farm Progress Companies,Chuck Roth, Group President
High Plains Journal, Duane Ross, Publisher
Hoard’s Dairyman
, Gary L. Vorpahl, Director of Marketing
Iowa Farmer Today, Steve DeWitt, VP/Publisher
Lee Agri-Media, Greg Moore, Group Publisher
Lee Publications, Bruce Button, General Manager
Meister Publishing, Gary Fitzgerald, President
Progressive Farmer, Ed Dickinson, Publisher
Successful Farming, Jim Cornick, Publisher
Vance Publishing, Bill Newham, VP/Publishing Director, Food Systems Group

Associate Members
Farm Business Communications, Palmer Anderson, Managing Director of Publications
Market ID, John Montandon, President, Multi-Ag Media

Executive Director
Steve Drake, PO Box 410260, St. Louis, MO 63141; 314/576-7957;

2001 APS Steering Committee
Karen McMahon, Chairman
Tom Davis
Larry Dreiling
Greg Henderson
Steve May
Willie Vogt
Lea Weinheimer

Debby Hartke is a writer and communications consultant based in St. Louis, Mo.

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