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IFAJ-Alltech young leader award winners announced

Ten young agricultural journalists from around the world have won IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism awards to attend the 2011 IFAJ Congress in Canada. The winners are:

  • Austria – Markus Habisch (writer, Styrian farmers association)
  • Canada – Lisa Guenther (freelance journalist and web writer)
  • Germany – Christian Mühlhausen (photojournalist)
  • Ireland – Sabrina Sweeney (broadcaster, BBC Northern Ireland)
  • Netherlands – Sjoerd Hofstee (dairy industry journalist)
  • Slovakia – Kristýna Šmehýlová (staff reporter, Roľnícke noviny agricultural magazine)
  • South Africa – Lloyd Phillips (reporter, Farmers’ Weekly)
  • Sweden – Anna Nilsson (city editor, Barometern daily newspaper)
  • Switzerland – Michael Wahls (writer, Swiss Farmers Agricultural Information Service)
  • USA – Holly Spangler (columnist, Prairie Farmer)

The IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism awards recognize the leadership potential of young members from countries belonging to IFAJ. Recipients each receive 1,000 Euros to support their participation at an IFAJ Congress.

As well, for the first time, winners will participate in a special two-day boot camp designed to enhance their professional development skills, exchange ideas and gain a more global perspective on agricultural communications challenges around the world. Instructors will include  top agricultural journalists and communicators, and will work with participants on developing print and broadcast stories for the IFAJ 2011 congress website,

“What a great time to be involved in agricultural communications,” says IFAJ President Mike Wilson. “Thanks to our close partnership with Alltech, the young leaders program is helping the next generation of agricultural journalists learn to take the reins of the profession we all enjoy and respect.”

Judges for this year’s competition were Karen Simon (USA) and Klaus Strotmann (Germany). Contest coordinator was IFAJ Secretary General Owen Roberts.

“I was gratified to see the number of young agricultural journalists who are working hard to hone their craft and who are passionate about agriculture,” said contest judge Simon. “The quality of the applications bodes well for the future of ag communications, for individual countries’ guilds and for the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists.”

The IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism awards are now in their sixth year. Growing from two journalists in year one, the awards now support 10 young journalists, thanks to a commitment from Alltech.

“Communication is the future of agriculture,” says Alltech founder Dr. Pearse Lyons. “We must develop the talents of our young communicators and the talents of our young leaders who will tell agriculture’s story in 21st century.  This is the goal of the IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Agricultural Journalism award and I couldn’t be happier for the winners.”

About IFAJ.  IFAJ is a non-political, professional association for agricultural journalists. IFAJ supports and encourages the practice of agricultural journalism in countries embracing freedom of the press.

About Alltech.  Alltech is a global animal health and nutrition company with 31 years’ experience in developing natural products that are scientifically proven to enhance animal health and performance.

Alltech Europe and Asia
Christina Lombard
Tel:+353 1 802 6259

North America-Corporate
Susanna Elliott
Tel: +1 859 887 5144

North America-Ag/Trade
Allie Hembree
Tel: +1 859 887 3326

Latin America
Maria Sol Orts
Tel: +54 2322 499 563

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