Tester’s next jobs workshop includes some of Montana’s biggest names in agriculture

Senator’s March 26 workshop in Bozeman to expand job opportunities in farming, ranching

(U.S. SENATE) – Senator Jon Tester’s next Small Business Opportunity Workshop, aimed at creating Montana jobs in farming and ranching, will feature some of the state’s biggest names in agriculture.

The March 26 event at Montana State University in Bozeman will include panel discussions such as “The Next Generation of Farming” and “Selling to your Neighbor—Local and Regional Marketing.”  Smaller group sessions and other discussions will focus on access to capital, current livestock and farming issues, boosting production, risk management, and conservation.

Montana participants scheduled to take part in Tester’s workshop include:

  • Ron de Yong, Walt Anseth, and Nancy Matheson, Montana Department of Agriculture
  • Christian McKay, Montana Department of Livestock
  • Chuck Munson, Montana Department of Justice
  • Lola Raska, Montana Grain Growers
  • Chad Doheny, Montana Farmers Union
  • Brett DeBruycker, Montana Cattlemen’s Association former President
  • Mark Peterson, Agriculture Research Service
  • Paul Hubbard, Missoula County Community Food Agriculture Coalition
  • Dave Pitts, Patti Soares, and Bruce Nelson, Farm Service Agency
  • Herb Karst, Farm Credit Service
  • Dave Prather, Montana Western Growers Cooperative
  • Thomas Bass, Gary Brester, Perry Miller, Jeff Mosely, John Peterson, and Bruce Maxwell with Montana State University

U.S. Deputy Agriculture Secretary Kathleen Merrigan will deliver the workshop’s keynote address, and discuss economic opportunities in farming and ranching, as well as accessing capital and foreign markets.  Merrigan is a former teacher and manager of the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food effort, which highlights the connection between farmers and consumers and supports local food systems to boost economic opportunities in rural America.

“My jobs workshops have seen tremendous success because they’re about more than talk—they give new tools to Montana’s small businesses,” said Tester, a third generation family farmer and small business owner.  “Now we’re going to aim those resources at Montana’s number one industry—the farmers and ranchers who are the backbone of our state’s economy.  Working together, we’re going to keep pushing to create jobs and put more Montanans to work.”

Tester’s Bozeman workshop will take place in Montana State University’s Strand Student Union Building in Bozeman on Saturday, March 26, from 8 a.m to 1:30 p.m.  The event is free and open to the public.  Montanans are encouraged to RSVP at tester.senate.gov/workshop.

Tester’s Small Business Opportunity Workshop builds on the success of his previous jobs workshops in Great Falls, Bozeman, Kalispell, Billings and Missoula over the past two years.  More than one thousand Montana small business owners and entrepreneurs have attended Tester’s workshops.