Utica, NY (November 2023) – The Beef Checkoff-funded Trailblazers program is seeking applications for its next class of beef advocates. Trailblazers, developed by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), a contractor to the Beef Checkoff, takes advocacy to the next level by giving participants the tools and training they need to promote beef to new audiences while addressing and correcting myths.
“Over the past two years, the Trailblazers program has proven to be a dynamic and effective program for advocates seeking to develop their skillset, while building an inter-connected community of elite advocates from across the country,” said Chandler Mulvaney, director of grassroots advocacy and spokesperson development at NCBA. “If you are an advocate and seeking a chance to be empowered on your advocacy journey, apply today, and help safeguard the work of cattle farmers and ranchers.”
The Trailblazers program is looking for new spokespeople to participate in a year-long hands-on program designed to train, equip, and empower beef advocates. Selected candidates receive training to become expert communicators, excel in media interviews and understand how to build confidence in beef related practices when talking to consumers.
Each year, 10 new Trailblazers are selected to create a tight-knit community that works together to find solutions to social and practical issues impacting the beef community. Throughout the year, Trailblazers receive advanced in-person and virtual training from subject matter experts, learning how to effectively engage on various social media platforms, interact with the media, and enhance public speaking skills. Upon completion of the program, Trailblazers serve as industry spokespeople and inform beef advocates at the local and state levels on advocacy, media, and spokesperson best practices.
"My favorite part of being a Trailblazer has been the networking and relationship building with people who are as passionate about the cattle and beef communities as I am,” said Kacy Atkinson of Wyoming. “Not only will you develop a supportive group of friends and cheerleaders you will find invaluable, but the program will also connect you to people within the community who will serve as mentors and resources, willing to help you meet the goals you have for yourself and push you to grow to become an even better advocate.”
Applications will be accepted through December 8 and selected participants will be notified mid-January, upon completing the review process. Applicants must be 21 years of age, have completed their Masters of Beef Advocacy certification, and provide at least two references with their online application. To apply, visit the website and for more information, contact Chandler Mulvaney at [email protected].
About the Beef Checkoff:
The Beef Checkoff Program was established as part of the 1985 Farm Bill. The Checkoff assesses $1 per head on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle, in addition to a comparable assessment on imported beef and beef products. States may retain up to 50 cents of the dollar and forward the other 50 cents per head to the Cattlemen's Beef Promotion and Research Board, which administers the national checkoff program, subject to USDA approval.
The Checkoff-funded Trailblazers program was created in 2021 to support the efforts of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a contractor to the Beef Checkoff, in identifying, recruiting, empowering, and engaging with advocates in the beef community. The program provides a train-the-trainer model to support state beef councils and partner organizations in mobilizing a cadre of spokespeople who are equipped to have tough conversations and seek solutions in telling the beef story.