Midwest Promotes Jean Brokish to Deputy Director
It’s already May and spring is (finally) coming to the Midwest. It’s an exciting time, with flowers and birds and farm fields all bustling with activity and the promise of new beginnings. I’m excited about a new beginning for me as I begin my new role as Midwest Deputy Director with American Farmland Trust.
For nearly three years I’ve had the privilege of working with farmers in the Vermilion Watershed, supporting staff working in the Upper Macoupin Watershed, providing coordination for members of the Illinois Sustainable Ag Partnership, and sharing information on ecosystem markets with farmers and farm advisors. I’m grateful for the many ideas and inspiration gleaned from working together with farmers, AFT colleagues, and external partners and I look forward to continuing that work as Deputy Director.
This new role provides an agriculture career opportunity for me to support our growing staff. We currently have two open positions:
- The Midwest Program Manager will lead efforts to increase adoption of conservation cropping systems at local levels. This position is great for someone with agronomic and/or watershed experience, and a passion for working with stakeholders to improve water quality.
- The Midwest Program Associate is a new position focused on identifying opportunities to expand the use of small grains and perennial bioenergy crops. This position is wonderful for someone interested in building coalitions and working one-on-one with farmers.
The Deputy Director role also offers additional opportunities for me to connect with AFT’s members and partners, and I’m eager to apply new insights and ideas toward achieving our strategic goals. Some of the questions that come to mind are:
- How can we better use water quality and climate outcomes to prioritize programs?
- Where are the opportunities to increase adoption of conservation cropping systems?
- What tools and policies can help us protect farmland?
- And what partners and partnerships are needed?
If you’re looking for a new agriculture career opportunity with an amazing team, if you have new ideas for AFT’s programs, or if you just want to share what excites you about our work in the coming year, let’s talk! I’d love to connect and see what new beginnings we can create.