Farmer Gets Eye-opening Experience at TEPAP Producer Program

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For Evan Kamenik, running a diversified farming operation is nothing new. His family produces cattle and raises corn, soybeans and hay on a 4,000-acre farm in Ashland, OH. They also do custom farming and drainage tile installation, as well as operating a mulch business. But The Executive Program for Agricultural Producers (TEPAP)  opened his eyes to the diversity of American—and international—agriculture and the people who work so hard to bring in the products of the fields, vineyards and orchards across this great land.

“In the first session, I met a guy from Australia who runs a mining operation and a date farmer,” Evan says. “It was really amazing to see people from all over the world who do what I do. I’ve already learned so much.”

Evan is one of two producers attending TEPAP on a scholarship from Pinion. One area of the program that has had immediate impact on Evan’s family and their farm is in-depth financial analysis of their diversified operation. The TEPAP program teaches management accounting principles.

“Dick Wittman’s presentations were eye-opening for me because I was able to take information back home to the farm and improve processes right away,” Evan says.

Evan says applying what he learned to his family’s farming operation will be critical to their future success. Like his counterpart TEPAP scholarship recipient Hunter Current, Evan also benefitted greatly from the DISC exercise, a personality profiling exercise, which alerted him to the fact that he is a “Director” type when it comes to communication and management. He says he’s excited about putting more strengths-based management in place.

“I’m already considering sending someone else from our operation to the next TEPAP in two years,” he said. “Plus, the food is great—almost too good.”

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