Buzzwords: We all know them. We all use them. Whether you’re a business owner “pivoting” during these “unprecedented times,” a “grassroots” candidate seeking an endorsement in our “battleground state,” or a farmer providing a “sustainable, safe and local food supply,” we’re inundated daily with buzzwords.
“Advocacy” is a buzzword Georgia Farm Bureau (GFB) often uses. You may grow tired of hearing it, but we won’t stop promoting it. GFB has been preaching advocacy since our organization was founded in 1937.
When that group of 50 farmers gathered on the Bartow County courthouse steps, they adopted GFB’s core mission of being a united voice for Georgia farmers in the legislative arenas of Atlanta and Washington, D.C. This is a charge we continue nearly 85 years later.
GFB President Tom McCall understands the importance of advocacy, not only as the leader of Georgia’s largest general ag organization, but as a past elected official. Since his election in December 2020, Mr. McCall has been an ardent supporter of our advocacy efforts and has worked to promote them as he has met with GFB members statewide.
Thanks to years of careful vetting and consideration by our members, the GFB Board of Directors and former GFB President Gerald Long, President McCall has been able to help implement one of GFB’s largest developments in the past 85 years: the creation of the GFB Impact Fund, our new political action committee (PAC).
The GFB Impact Fund will help us as the demographics of our state continue to shift, and it becomes more important to support elected officials who support farmers and believe in the future of Georgia agriculture.
Many of you who attended the Advocacy in Action session at the 2021 GFB Convention are already using the skills you acquired to advocate in your districts and statewide. If you haven’t started engaging with your elected officials, it’s never too late.
We are in the middle of the legislative session and “right to farm” continues to be GFB’s top priority as the GFB Board of Directors named it our spotlight issue for 2022. As the 40-day legislative calendar winds down, we need our grassroots network of advocates to help move it across the finish line.
I hope you’ve read President McCall’s column. In it, he champions our members for their dedication to their farms and encourages you to join GFB in advocating for agriculture and support the GFB Impact Fund. If you are unsure where to start, reach out to President McCall or the GFB Public Policy Department to join our advocacy programs.
With 236 state legislators, GFB’s work is never done, however, the advocacy activities our GFB members conduct in every legislative district makes you our greatest strength under the Gold Dome and in D.C.
Katie Duvall is the Advocacy & Policy Development Coordinator in the GFB Public Policy Department. She may be reached email@example.com 478.474.0679, ext. 5217.