Sorghum Checkoff seeks applicants for Leadership Sorghum

The Sorghum Checkoff is currently accepting applications for Leadership Sorghum Class IV, a program designed to develop the next generation of sorghum leaders.

During the 15-month leadership program, class members will be exposed to various aspects of the sorghum industry in addition to personal development and networking opportunities. Class members will participate in both hands-on and classroom-style learning experiences to gain an understanding of how sorghum moves through the value chain, how checkoffs and stakeholder organizations interact on behalf of the industry and what the future holds for sorghum.

“Leadership Sorghum is a unique opportunity to develop strong leaders with a desire to learn and develop a passion for this industry,” said Florentino Lopez, Sorghum Checkoff executive director. “This program is a way to invest in the future of our industry by equipping growers with the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to become advocates for sorghum.”

Eligible applicants must be farmers actively engaged in sorghum production in the United States. Fifteen growers will be accepted into the program’s fourth class.

“It is so fulfilling to see our class members grow, learn and experience new things,” said Shelee Padgett, Leadership Sorghum program director. “Our goal is to equip them to be leaders and advocates for sorghum, taking their knowledge back to their communities and furthering the industry by becoming involved locally, in their state and nationally.”

Full consideration will be given to all applicants, regardless of age, gender, race or occupation. Every effort will be made to select a class, based on the applicant pool, which is representative of the entire sorghum industry, its diversity and rural community interests.

Applications for the program are available at and are due by 5 p.m. March 16. Following the application deadline, all applications and references will be reviewed by a selection committee. Finalists may be contacted via phone to arrange an interview. Class members and alternates will be notified of acceptance by May 1. More information on the class schedule and program criteria can be found at