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CCFB News» July 2022

Ag Lit BitOnto the Next Chapter

07/08/2022 @ 9:30 am | By Diane Merrion

All good books must come to an end, although many stay with you forever. My role at the Farm Bureau is also ending this month although the memories will remain forever. It’s been a wonderful journey started by Haley and Bob along with Jill and all my current and former peers.


Some ‘chapters’ of note along the way include:


  • Our amazing Ag in the Classroom Presenter Team! The face of our Ag Literacy efforts are the presenters that I have been fortunate to collaborate with. I so have appreciated your hard work, humor, and dedication. Nothing would have been possible without each of you who all brought something special to every classroom. Thank you to Jim, Kathy B., Joan, Linda D., Toni, Sheri, Kathy L., Diane, Wendy, Valerie, Sarah, Amy, Linda S., Mike, and Wayne. What a team!!


  • Farm Camp! I will always have a special memory of the crazy idea Jill Drover and I embarked upon called “Passport to the Farm Camp”. Another one of those projects we had to ask ourselves, are we crazy or should we go for it. We did and pulled in some willing volunteers along the way including our Camp Counselors extraordinaire Carole Scannell, Cathy Malloy, and Linda Dunn. It took an army to conduct the program for several years but provided many endless memories.


  • Being involved with the Chicago High School for Ag Sciences. What an honor. Having no prior knowledge of the school, I still remember my first visit there with Haley. While the animals surprised me, the experiences with the students will be what I cherish the most. They took the lead on teaching at farm camp, impressed heads of companies during Farm Shadows, and were willing volunteers for Farm Bureau events over the years. The students and their teachers formed a bond through the unique topic of agriculture that seemed second to none.


  • Summer Ag Institutes. I couldn’t wait to plan the agenda and introduce teachers to ag professionals in our industry. My excitement was shared by teachers who helped me every step of the way and showed such enthusiasm. They couldn’t wait to go back to their classrooms armed with new lessons and knowledge about ag. Exhausting, but unforgettable times.



  • Food Checkout Day will hold a special place as the outpouring of generosity that school after school showed through their food collections for our Ronald McDonald outreach efforts. It melted my heart. To all the teachers, counselors and principals that coordinated your school efforts, I will never forget you.


I thank the Board of Directors and my Ag Literacy Team and Chairs including Mike and Tim who never wavered in their support of me and all our outreach efforts. I also thank Kevin Daugherty for enduring my endless questions and requests, along with providing the best ag literacy educational content there is. Special thanks to my husband Dave and sons Brian,

Eric, and Joe for supporting my Farm Bureau life for many years.


It’s time for a new author and a new book, featuring Katrina who we welcome to the Farm Bureau. I can’t wait to read her stories and watch each new chapter unfold.

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