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MADISON

Farm Bureau leaders became lobbyists for a day while meeting with Wisconsin's congressional delegation in Washington, D.C. on April 13 and 14. The issues discussed were trade, immigration, wolves, food labeling and the farm economy.

Graduates of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation's Institute leadership course were joined on Capitol Hill by the Wisconsin Farm Bureau's Board of Directors. The April 11-15 trip marked the completion of the Institute, a yearlong leadership training program available to Farm Bureau members.

'Being aware of political changes and how they can or will affect my farm and life are important to me. The Institute has helped me to think outside of the box when talking with my representatives. I was able to share with them exactly how their decision will impact me,' said Janet Clark, a dairy farmer and Fond du Lac County Farm Bureau member.

While in Washington, Farm Bureau members met officials from the American Farm Bureau Federation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture where they discussed issues pertaining to wetland conservation, telecommunication and broadband expansion, food safety, and national preparedness for animal disease.

A visit to the New Zealand Embassy included a conversation on trade and the global agricultural economy.

In addition to meeting with Senators Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin and their representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives, Farm Bureau members also received a tour of the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives' chambers thanks to House Speaker Paul Ryan.

Members of the ninth Leadership Institute Class who attended the D.C. trip are: Hannah Barthels, Milton; Amanda Carlson, Hartland; Janet Clark, Rosendale; Jayne Dalton, Endeavor; Erin Daluge, Janesville; Will Litzer, Marathon; Kelsi Mayer, Monroe; Bill Mueller, Wausau; Sarah Sacker, Browntown; Taylor Schuetz, Brooklyn; Kim VandenAvond, Luxemburg; Brad Weber, Marshfield; and Randy Wokatsch, Marathon.

For more information about the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation's Institute, visit www.wfbf.com and search 'Institute.'

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