by jamesc 11/18/2016 11:35:30 AM --
NORFOLK, NE – An Elgin woman has been recognized for her contributions to agriculture. Anne Meis was honored as the AG-ceptional Woman of the Year at the 8th Annual AG-ceptional Women’s Conference Friday at the Lifelong Learning Center at Northeast Community College here.
The announcement was revealed publicly during a video tribute that was played during the opening session of the conference. The video was sponsored by Farm Credit Services of America and produced by the Northeast Agriculture Department and Media Production Group.
Meis, along with her husband, Jim, brother and sister-in-law, Joe and Pam Meis, and parents, Jim and Shirley Meis, own and operate a large, corn, soybean, alfalfa and feeder cattle operation southeast of Elgin.
“Anne has been honored for her efforts to expand opportunities for the next generation of farmers and ranchers as well as emboldening communities, especially youth, with the resources they need to thrive,” said Corinne Morris, dean of agriculture, math and science at Northeast Community College and conference director. “She is dedicated to her career as an agriculture advocate; fosters professional partnerships between agriculture associations and farmers; and supports her family in every way necessary to sustain a strong bond. Anne’s passion for agriculture and the welfare of human life is incomparable.”
Meis was nominated by Julia Schwartz, agriculture instructor and FFA advisor at Elgin Public Schools.
“Precision agriculture and sustainability have become a lead factor that makes Meis Farms a cut above the rest in the Elgin area,” Schawartz wrote. “Anne and her family have embraced these methods of crop and cattle production. She and her husband understand all too well the need to sustain the land in which they grow food, and hope to pass down (that knowledge) to future generations of the family.”
Meis’ children, Justine, Jon and Marie, all play important roles on the farm, assist when they are needed and have been taught the tools of precision agriculture. Justine and Marie have worked with and have studied the use of crop soil moisture probes that are used in the Meis’ fields. Jon, now a freshman at Northeast Community College, also has a small “track packing” operation where he has a special piece of machinery that packs soil into irrigation wheel well tracks to prevent erosion and make tracks virtually nonexistent.
Anne Meis serves or has served with a number of organizations including Cedar Creek 4-H Club; Elgin FFA; St. Boniface Catholic Church; Elgin Centennial Committee; Nebraska Farm Bureau and as a member of the Nebraska Soybean Board. She was also a participant in Nebraska LEAD 33 – a two-year leadership development program for Nebraskans involved in agriculture.
Meis is very active in FFA where she has served as a sponsor of the local FFA Chapter’s District X Career Development event that is held every year at Northeast Community College, the District X Livestock Judging Contest in Neligh and the State FFA Convention.
In accepting the award, Meis gave credit to conference attendees and her family.
“Every one of you are amazing women. I also offer this (award) to my family. That’s where this all starts. Those of you work in family farm operations know it’s a challenge, but it’s rewarding.”
Meis said the AG-ceptional Woman’s Conference has given value to what she does in her life.
“I have heard other women at the conference doing things and I thought, ‘Wow! I do that too.’ I want to say to every woman out there, what you do has value and is important. Stand up tall and proud. Together you are all part of the ag industry and agricultural community and we all hold value.”
“She is an inspirational mom and devoted wife. She loves life on the farm and she advocates for agriculture in so many ways – volunteering, leading youth groups, serving on boards and traveling the world,” Schwartz said. “I feel certain that you will be just as impressed with Mrs. Anne Meis and her inspiring passion for the future of agriculture as I am.”
In the past, AG-ceptional Woman honorees did not learn they were selected for the recognition until the video was played during the conference’s opening session. With Meis’ involvement in the conference each year, organizers had to find another way to surprise her.
Meis learned of her selection as the 2016 AG-ceptional Woman of the Year at an Elgin FFA Chapter meeting this past summer. Her daughter, Marie, president of the Elgin FFA Chapter, handed her a note with the announcement following a presentation Meis gave as a guest speaker on her travels with the Nebraska Soybean Board.
Anne Meis, Elgin, speaks during the AG-ceptional Women’s Conference Friday at Northeast Community College as her husband, Jim, stands by. Meis was named 2016 AG-ceptional Woman of the Year at the conference.