American Farmers & Ranchers’ annual meeting will be Feb. 16-18 in Norman, Oklahoma

A full slate of state and national agricultural leaders will address members attending the annual meeting of the American Farmers & Ranchers on Feb. 16 to 18, at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Norman, Oklahoma.

Roger Johnson, president of the National Farmers Union, will lead a panel discussion on national policy Feb. 17. Other members of the panel include Chandler Goule, CEO of the National Association of Wheat Growers, and Kellie Bray, senior director of government affairs, CropLife America.

“Our members are looking forward to hearing from these outstanding leaders,” Terry Detrick, AFR president said.

Other convention speakers include Scott Biggs, state director of the USDA Farm Service Agency; Zack Clark, NFU government relations; R.J. Gray, president and CEO of Oklahoma Agricultural Cooperative Council; Harvey Schroeder, executive director of Oklahoma Cotton Council; and Joe Neal Hampton, executive director of Oklahoma Grain and Feed Association and Oklahoma Wheat Growers.

A special advocacy session featuring the Peterson Farm Brothers is set for Saturday morning. The Peterson brothers are famous for their parody music videos where they educate others about the agricultural industry.

“We are extremely excited to have the Peterson Farm Brothers entertain and educate our members,” Detrick said. “This is a great opportunity for our youth to learn how they can advocate for agriculture.”

A strong component of every AFR convention is the business session and this year delegates are expected to address the ongoing state budget crisis, the rural economy, the new farm bill and feral hog control.

Delegates will elect state board of directors for the southwest district 2, southeast district 4 and northwest district 1 positions. They will also vote on the vice president’s office.

A unique feature at this convention will be the AFR Women’s Council blood drive beginning Saturday morning at 9 a.m.

“Blood donations have been a strong focus during this past year and we hope to continue helping save lives through blood donations in 2018,” Detrick said.

The Concharty Mt. Boys Quartet will close out the convention Sunday morning with a series of inspirational gospel tunes as part of the annual worship and memorial service.