Veteran Farmers Project

Returning veterans and rural America can keep each other strong.

The Veteran Farmers Project offers:

  • Training conducted by expert speakers on topics in agriculture and finance
  • Individual Consultations with professionals for financial and production advice
  • HelpLine for phone and email inquiries, resources, and support

In the last 10 years, almost a million of our military’s servicemen and servicewomen have come from rural communities. As these veterans return home, they bring with them an opportunity to employ their passion, discipline, and sense of service to revitalize America’s small farms and rural communities.

America’s farmers and rural communities are aging, and few new farmers are getting started. By returning to their farming roots, veterans can carry on the proud tradition of small American family farms.

The Veteran Farmers Project provides veterans with the business and agriculture education that can help them become successful farmers. By creating sound farm businesses that tap into high value markets, returning veterans can reintegrate gracefully and fruitfully into America’s rural communities.

Farm Training for Veterans

In a 90-minute webinar held Nov 16, 2012, veterans from across the country found out about resources for starting to farm. Two farmers provided virtual farm tours and answered questions about starting their farms.

If you have a high-speed internet connection, you can see the webinar recording here.

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If you have a dialup connection or need to view the webinar offline, contact Farmer Veteran Coalition for a CD copy of the recording. Send an email to or call 530.756.1395.

Video only portions for Garret Dwyer (Marine veteran, cattle operation) and Common Good Farm (direct markets, diversified vegetables, poultry, livestock) are available. See the videos here. (They are a higher quality than through the webinar).

The webinar includes:

  • Welcome – Kathie Starkweather, CFRA and Graham Christensen, Nebraska Farmers Union
  • Remarks – Nebraska State Senator Annette Dubas
  • Farmer Veteran Coalition – Michael O’Gorman
  • Nebraska AgrAbility – Sharry Neilsen, University of Nebraska Extension
  • Farm Service Agency Loan Programs – Paul Guenther, Nebraska Farm Service Agency
  • Crop Insurance Basics – Wyatt Fraas, Center for Rural Affairs
  • Financing, Land & Information Resources – Wyatt Fraas, Center for Rural Affairs
  • Common Good Farm Tour & Questions – Evrett Lunquist and Ruth Chantry
  • Garrett Dwyer Farm Tour & Questions – Garrett Dwyer
  • Evaluation – Kathie Starkweather, Center for Rural Affairs



Get personalized professional assistance and counseling on farm production, business, financing, and more:

  • Production and marketing
  • Farm business development
  • Loan applications
  • Farm financial advising
  • State and federal financing and loan options
  • Land access strategies
  • Linking programs
  • Programs for disabled farmers

Contact the Veteran Farmers Project or for guidance in finding the programs, information, and organizations that can help new veteran farmers succeed.

  • USDA Farm programs: Traci Bruckner, Center for Rural Affairs, 402-687-2100,

Partner Organization Contact Information

The Veteran Farmers Project is supported by the USDA Risk Management Agency.