Kiley Allan is an undergraduate student in Agriculture and Life Sciences Education – Communication and Animal Science. She grew up on a small farrow-to-finish and cow/calf operation in Le Mars, IA. In high school, she stayed active in 4-H, FFA, band, orchestra, choir, large group and individual speech, and Thespians. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Women in Ag Program hired Kiley as a student intern, and she is also a member of the 2022 Women in Ag Leadership Conference Advisory Committee. Kiley enjoys her time on campus, as she participates in Block and Bridle, Collegiate Cattlemen, and Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow. During her free time, she enjoys listening to music with her friends, showing pigs and cattle with her family, and serving as a volunteer for the Iowa FFA Association.
Krista Downing is a co-owner of Triple Downing Cattle LLC in Linden, Iowa and works off the farm as the Program Coordinator for Guthrie County ISU Extension & Outreach. In her cattle company role, she assists in the day-to-day decisions and operations of the company. In her Extension role, Krista assists in bringing various educational opportunities and resources to the members of Guthrie County through hands on educational learning opportunities.
Krista earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Education: Communications in 2017 from Iowa State University and is a passionate advocate for the agriculture industry. She resides in Guthrie County where she spends her time on the family farm working with her cattle and assisting her family farming operation with spring and fall field work.
Ann Johanns serves Iowa State University Extension and Outreach as an Extension Program Specialist. In this role, Ann coordinates the extensive library of materials available on the Ag Decision Maker website, conducts research on emerging agricultural issues, and supports educational efforts across the state with the farm management team. She has a passion for sharing unbiased data and resources with agricultural producers, landowners, and agribusiness professionals to help them make more informed decisions.
A graduate of Iowa State University with a B.S. in Agricultural Business and M.S. in Agricultural Education. Ann grew up helping anywhere she could on her parent’s farm in Southwest Iowa. She now lives in rural Mitchell County with her husband, Joe, and three active sons on their crop and livestock farm.
Dr. Sara Lira
Dr. Lira is a research scientist at Corteva Agriscience in Johnston, IA. She received a B.S. in ecology, an M.S. in Genetics, and a Ph.D in Plant Breeding from Iowa State University. Dr. Lira spent ten years as a corn breeder at Corteva but has recently turned her focus to breeding for emerging climate-positive cropping systems. Her work has lately emphasized the development of cropping systems, including annual and perennial cover crops and double crops for the Midwest.
Melissa O’Rourke is an Attorney and Farm & Agribusiness Management Specialist for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. Melissa has practiced extensively in the fields of business and estate planning, human resources, immigration and agricultural commercial litigation. She works with numerous farm families and agribusinesses to facilitate planning and management. Melissa’s particular areas of interest include farm estate and succession planning, agricultural human resource legal and management issues, farmland leasing and tenure arrangements, facilitating women in agriculture programming, and working with beginning and transitioning farmers. She is a sought-after presenter throughout the region on agricultural legal issues. Melissa’s work with Iowa State University combines her background in education, agriculture and law as she informs and advises members of the farm and agribusiness community on an expansive array of business planning and legal topics.
Alexandra Osborn is an undergraduate student in Agricultural and Rural Policy Studies and Agronomy. She is from Wellington, Missouri where her family operates a corn and soybean century farm. Alexandra was very active in FFA, participating in public speaking, chapter and district office, career development events, as well as national and state conventions. The Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Women in Ag Program hired Alexandra as a student intern, and she is also a member of the 2022 Women in Ag Leadership Conference Advisory Committee. Alexandra is active on campus as she serves as the secretary to the Agriculture Policy Club executive board, is a member of the American Seed Trade Association, and also assists in the development of marketing strategy for the Agricultural and Rural Policy Studies undergraduate major. In her free time, Alexandra enjoys spending time with family and friends and spending time on the farm.
Lisa Scarbrough is a Communications Specialist with Iowa State University Department of Economics and Extension and Outreach. Lisa co-leads a Women in Agriculture program. She produces videos, designs marketing materials, coordinates promotion, manages websites, creates program impact reports and publishes an online newsletter. Lisa works with Extension professionals across the state to promote educational courses, workshops and conferences for women. She leads the Women Impacting Agriculture recognition program. Lisa earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Studies with a minor in Journalism from the University of Iowa.
Madeline Schultz is the Women in Agriculture Program Manager with Iowa State University Department of Economics and Extension and Outreach. She designs educational programs, increases connections among women, builds the professional capacity of educators, and stewards program funding in order to improve the lives of women and their families and enhance agricultural sustainability. Madeline coordinates farm management courses for women as well as an annual leadership conference. She serves on the national board of directors for Annie’s Project – Education for Farm Women. Madeline received the 2019 USDA Research, Education, and Economics Undersecretary’s Award in recognition of her team’s innovative courses, conferences, videos and tours impacting the lives of women in agriculture who are key stakeholders in the production of safe food. Madeline earned a Master of Science degree in business administration from Iowa State University.
Rylee is an undergraduate student majoring in Agricultural Studies-Multidisciplinary Option. Her emphasis areas are in Animal Science, Agriculture Business, and Communications. She is also minoring in Animal Science and General Business. Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Women in Ag Program hired Rylee as a student assistant, and she is also a member of the 2022 Women in Ag Leadership Conference Advisory Committee. Rylee grew up in Guthrie Center, where she was active in 4-H and FFA. Outside of school, she also maintains a cow/calf operation with her younger brother. On campus, Rylee is involved with the Farm Operations Club and Collegiate Cattlemen. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family, reading, and working on the farm.
Alexis Stevens serves Iowa State University Extension and Outreach as a Farm Management Specialist in West Central Iowa. In this role, Alexis provides research-based information on farm business management, grain marketing, land leasing, government programs, succession and transition, and Women in Ag programs. She has a passion for helping people succeed in business as well as sharing agriculture’s story with the world. She is a certified Farm Succession Coordinator as well as a recent graduate of The Agribusiness Association of Iowa’s leadership academy.
Alexis is an Army veteran where she used her experience in agriculture to ensure a safe food supply for troops in the Middle East and improved agricultural practices in Kuwait. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland with a B.S. in Psychology and a Master of Business Administration. She grew up in Iowa and returned 17 years ago to manage her family’s cattle and row crop farm in Greene County. She now lives in Jefferson with her husband, Chad, and 10 children.
Jingyi Tong is a third-year Ph.D. student from the Department of Economics. Her major fields of interest are agricultural, environmental, and labor economics, specifying farm and land management, conservation practices, carbon market, crop and dairy insurance, and gender gap. Jingyi serves as a research assistant in the Women Farmland Ownership project which aims at enhancing conservation, access, and generational transition of Iowa farmland through women landowners. She is also a member of the 2022 Women in Ag Leadership Conference Advisory Committee.
Jingyi graduated from China Agricultural University with B.A. in Economics and minors in Mathematics and International Study. She also got M.S. in Agricultural and Applied Economics from the University of Wisconsin Madison. She is quite interested in agriculture diversity and is proactively helping to promote informational and educational programs for Iowa women landowners.