The Lanoues advanced to the AFBF competition after capturing top honors at the Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers and Ranchers (YF&R) Excellence in Agriculture Competition in November. This contest is designed as an opportunity for young farmers and ranchers who may not farm 100 percent of the time to earn recognition while actively contributing to agriculture and building their leadership skills through their involvement in Farm Bureau and their community.
“We are humbled and overjoyed with this honor,” said the Lanoues. “Thank you to all that have assisted us and to all of the sponsors.”
“It has been such a privilege to meet the other national competitors and to experience their positive energy to promote agriculture and share our stories with consumers,” said Ruth.
“I am so proud of the personal growth that I have seen in Ruth through our involvement in the YF&R program. YF&R has given her an opportunity to grow into a confident and respected leader and spokesperson for agriculture,” said Paul. “We encourage others to grow both individually and as couples through Farm Bureau’s YF&R program.”
As the winner of the contest, the Lanoues receive the choice of a 2015 Chevrolet Silverado or 2015 GMC Sierra and a paid registration to the 2015 AFBF FUSION Conference in Nashville, Tennessee.
Paul is a farm business management instructor, and Ruth is a registered nurse. The Lanoues are involved in Ruth’s family farm where they raise crops and cattle. They have five children.
They competed against 32 state winners. Runner-ups in the contest were from South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.
In other AFBF YF&R results, Pat Bakeberg of Waverly in Wright County competed in the Achievement Award Contest, and Joel Mathiowetz of Morgan in Redwood County represented Minnesota against 37 other state winners in the Discussion Meet contest.
Nearly 60 Farm Bureau members from Minnesota are among the 4,500 Farm Bureau members representing each state and Puerto Rico at the AFBF Annual Meeting. The meeting also features workshops and seminars, as well as, the national resolutions session which set policies for the upcoming year.