NIAA accepting nominations

Nominations for Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders program due November 15

The National Institute for Animal Agriculture (NIAA) is now accepting nominations for the second cohort of the Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders program. Nominations are due Wednesday, November 15, by 11:59 p.m.

The 16-month leadership program blends in-person and virtual working sessions to focus on key areas of leadership development. Members of the program work together on applied-learning and small-group capstone projects, which incorporate topics identified by the cohort members. “The NIAA Leadership Cohort is beyond what I imagined and has been a challenging and rewarding experience,” said Madison Simmons Hopcia, Upstate Niagara Cooperative, Inc. and inaugural cohort participant. “ NIAA’s cohort is one of the few that lets you plan your experiences and is geared towards what you are interested in growing in and highly recommend participating if you are looking to grow in your profession and in your understanding of agriculture.”

The United Soybean Board serves as the founding sponsor of the Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders program, with additional financial support provided by Farm Credit, NIAA and its members and partners. Participant investment for the leadership program is $2,500. With sponsor and participant investments, the leadership program provides an estimated $10,000 in training and resources and NIAA membership during the length of the program.

In 2021, NIAA launched the program to provide emerging leaders a new opportunity to gain next-level leadership and professional development training specifically focused on the animal agriculture segment of the industry. Since then, the program has represented a wide range of agricultural sectors. The program empowers professionals in the early to midpoint of their careers to build on previous leadership development experiences and collaborate with peers across the industry to advance animal agriculture’s role in today’s food system.

The selection process begins with an application or nomination from a sponsoring organization. More information about how to nominate an individual for the program or become an applicant is available at



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