NAMA Fall Conference Sets Records in St. Louis

Written by NAMA on Thursday, October 17, 2019 , 12:22 pm

More than 220 agri-marketers converged on St. Louis, Mo., for the eighth annual NAMA Fall Conference, “HuSTLe.” It was a banner year for this signature NAMA event, shattering all goals and attendance records!

The week kicked off with a Gateway NAMA tour of some of the most inventive ag operations near St. Louis: Purina and Stumpy’s Spirits. The high-energy day capped off with an elegant sushi reception at The Ritz-Carlton sponsored by Brownfield Ag News.

The first main day of Conference kicked off with former Google executive Steve Lerch. He shared stellar examples of breeding a culture of innovation. “Move, change and invent quickly,” he urged the audience. He called on attendees to accept failure as part of the process and pursue bold gains.

  1. Neil Caskey shared a behind-the-scenes look at how the National Corn Growers Association took control of the national conversation after a misguided attack ad about corn aired during the Super Bowl.
  2. Attendees learned about the birth of True Food TV, YouTube’s most watched food education channel. Nicole Cotroneo Jolly shared practical tips for creating powerful video storytelling.
  3. Bestselling author of InstaBrain Sarah Weise delivered compelling insights into mapping and optimizing the customer experience.
  4. Four agency c-suite leaders took to the stage to reveal keys to success. The leadership powerhouse included Melissa Galazka, VP Account Service, Paradowski; Suzan Knese, Chief Operating Officer, Osborn Barr Paramore (OBP); Tina VonderHaar, President & CEO, Brighton Agency; and Alison Berry, Chief Operating Officer, HLK.

Other conference highlights:

NAMA’s Professional Development Awards of Excellence were also presented during the conference. These 2019 awards were sponsored by Farm Progress and honorees included:

Doug Reynolds, Corteva Agriscience

Hannah Thompson-Weeman, Animal Agriculture Alliance

Bob Brunker, J.L. Farmakis, Inc.

The conference ended on a high note with a spirited presentation by Dr. Jacqueline M. Applegate, President, Global Vegetable Seeds & Environmental Science, Crop Science division of Bayer. She said effective organizations have what she terms OPTICS: Openness, Purpose-Driven, Trust, Imagination, Customer-Centricity and Soft Skills.

Takeaway Conference Themes

  1. To foster innovation, leave room for failure and evolution.
  2. Move to market quickly and adjust strategy accordingly.
  3. Today’s customers respond to authenticity and transparency. Go to the source to learn.
  4. Accept that change is inevitable and empower junior team members.
  5. Find your purpose first and stay focused. 

Check out the photos on NAMA’s flickr.

New Video Highlights Member Benefits

Written by NAMA on Thursday, October 17, 2019 , 12:21 pm

Want to show a colleague what NAMA’s all about? A new video highlighting the benefits of joining NAMA premiered at the 2019 Fall Conference. Watch the video at Special thanks to Scenic Road for creating this video.

Fall Conference Session Recordings Available

Written by NAMA on Thursday, October 17, 2019 , 12:21 pm

Want to hear and see what you missed in St. Louis? The video recording of the Agency C-Suite Panel is available on NAMA’s YouTube channel. Visit to watch.

The audio recordings of three breakout sessions are available on the NAMA Member Portal. Click on 2019 Fall Conference Recordings.

Mark Your Calendars for NAMA/ARC Reception at NAFB

Written by NAMA on Thursday, October 17, 2019 , 12:21 pm

If you’re attending the NAFB Convention, be sure to stop by the NAMA/ARC reception on Wednesday, November 13 from 5-6 p.m. The reception takes place on the Garden Terrace of the Westin Crown Center Hotel. No registration is necessary. Feel free to bring your friends and colleagues!

NAMA Foundation News

Written by NAMA on Thursday, October 17, 2019 , 12:21 pm

At the Fall Conference, the NAMA Foundation hosted their annual Big Board Fundraiser. Attendees could buy squares featuring Student NAMA Schools and Foundation Board members. They were then eligible to win an Amazon Gift Card.

Congratulations to the 2019 Winners: Wendy Pinkerton, Zoetis; Marcy Miller, Rhea + Kaiser; Jenna Oesch, Bayer; and Andrea Slattery, VitaPlus.

The Board raised over $2600 to benefit Student NAMA.

Watch your email for the kick-off of the NAMA Foundation annual online auction.

Items available include media packages, meeting registrations and even a vacation home. Bidding will open next week.

Dates Set for Regional Best of NAMA Ceremonies

Written by NAMA on Thursday, October 17, 2019 , 12:21 pm

Have you entered your best work in the Best of NAMA competition? You’ll want to make sure you attend your Regional Banquet to see the winners. The dates and locations have been named for these ceremonies. Registration details will come soon. Keep checking back at

January 9 Region 2 Best of NAMA Event
Grand Street Café, Kansas City, MO

January 15 Region 3 Best of NAMA Event
Minneapolis/St. Paul

January 23 Region 4 Best of NAMA Event
Milwaukee Brewing Company, Milwaukee, WI

Waldoch Farms Hosts North Central NAMA

Written by NAMA on Thursday, October 17, 2019 , 12:20 pm

North Central NAMA hit the road to visit Waldoch Farm in Lino Lakes, MN for their September “Fall Fun” event. The farm offered activities for all ages and interests. Some hopped on the hayride or mingled through the corn maze. Others slid down the slide or sped away in the pedal carts. Attendees enjoyed tasting the farm’s famous kettle corn and connecting with peers.

In addition to the fun, they made time to learn from Waldoch Farm experts. They shared how they market the farm – both its fun events and unique products. Members also learned about the vital role of bees on the farm. A bee expert from the University of Minnesota joined the group for the evening, as well.

It was an evening of fall fun, thanks to Waldoch Farm.

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