Blog for Rural America

The Center for Rural Affairs, a private, non-profit organization, is working to strengthen small businesses, family farms and ranches, and rural communities. Permission to reprint items from this web log is hereby granted, on the condition that clear credit is given to the original source of the material. If the blog provides information for a story, please let us know by sending an email to

Friday, February 03, 2006

Rural Action Network Update

National Rural Action Network Update

Issuing a ChallengeBuilding a network through people like you will take hard work and commitment; building rural leaders will be a critical component

by Kathie Starkweather, Center for Rural Affairs,

Thanks to all of you who called or sent notes about the creation of the National Rural Action Network! We appreciate the show of support, and it helps bring home the idea that there is a need for this type of effort.

Organizing a rural constituency to speak out for what Rural America wants and needs in terms of public policy is going to take a lot of work and commitment – but it will be good and worthwhile work.

We need fair opportunities for Rural America, and the comments we received support that need. Here are a few excerpts from notes and phone calls:

“I want to applaud the Center for working on the creation of the Network. I think it is a good way to move.”

“Our voice needs to be heard.”

“This IS an idea whose time has come. A national rural action network with good advisors could really shape and help empower folks across the U.S.”

A “Leadership Development for the National Rural Action Network” training session was held in Fargo, North Dakota, in conjunction with the annual Marketplace for Entrepreneurs. Developing leaders within the Network is a critical component of its success. Helping these leaders build the capacity to do the types of things that will be required to have a successful Network is the focus of this training.

This is just the beginning, and I would like to ask something of those of you who are reading this article. Within the next month, will you speak to three other people in your community about the National Rural Action Network?

Ask those three people how important it is to ensure their community has a future. Hand them a copy of this newsletter and ask them to be engaged.

Let me know, will you, if you took up this challenge? I’d like to hear how it went and who you spoke with. We’re building this network through people like you; we need to start now!

Kathie Starkweather,

post a question or comment here or contact John Crabtree,

Center for Rural Affairs
Values. Worth. Action.


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