One of my favorite parts of this job is visiting you, hearing your stories, and being able to share them. However, planning stories for our 50th anniversary has had me thinking for three years.
The biggest questions on my mind were: How can we celebrate, remember, and commemorate 50 years of an organization that does so much? How do we write about our past, present, and future at the same time? What stories do we need to capture for our archives? Who could I interview?
For the newsletter, we have decided we will feature directors who focus on an area of work.
Starting with this issue, we’ll showcase stories on community, farming, lending services, and policy, while taking a look at how the work was started, how it has evolved into the present, and see what is in store for the future.
However, this is just part of our history. I would love to collect stories from you to share on our blog and to keep for the next 50 years. What work have you been interested in over the years? Did you work at the Center? Did you participate in one of our projects?
Tell us your Center story. Contact me at email@example.com or 402.687.2100 ext. 1025.
In this issue
Celebrating 50 years in rural America: community remains focus after decades of work - The Center was started in 1973 in Walthill, Nebraska, by rural Nebraskans concerned about the loss of economic opportunity in agriculture and the decline of rural communities.
- Center looks at food truck permitting, inspection process - With up to 625 political subdivisions developing unique rules and regulations for mobile food units in Nebraska, consistency is needed across the inspection and permitting process.
- Beginning rancher gains experience from solar grazing partnership - Iowa has seen a rapid increase in solar project development the past two years, and solar farms pose a considerable opportunity for multipurpose agricultural uses in rural spaces.
- Vanilla creates business opportunity in Nebraska - Fouad Mhadji Issa says Nebraska vanilla will be the next big thing. Like beef. Or sweet corn. Koponi Vanilla, his business in Grand Island, Nebraska, sells gourmet beans, paste, and extract. Fouad is working hard to make Koponi a premium product sought after by chefs and home bakers nationwide.
- Conservation fellowship offers chance to gain knowledge, insights, and relationships - An inquisitive mind is the first step to learning something new. For Katie Bettin, that curiosity has guided her throughout her pursuit of urban farming. With the knowledge she’s acquired, she hopes to one day see a solid foundation built for local food production and systems.
- Beginning organic farmers left to choose between crop insurance, smart planting - Travis Scheffler, a beginning farmer in Lonsdale, Minnesota, routinely finds himself in a quandary. He has to choose between planting in the way he knows is best for his operation and his crop insurance coverage because of final planting dates set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency (RMA).
- From the desk of the executive director: 50 years of meaningful rural impact - During the summer of 1973, a group of rural Nebraskans saw how their communities were changing. They were concerned about the future of the places they called home, about access to economic opportunity, and about environmental stewardship. These residents decided to fight for a better future rather than be passive spectators to a changing economic landscape and shifting federal policies. From this, the Center for Rural Affairs was created.
- Thank you to our 2022 donors!