Farm Bureau president urges unity, strength in agriculture
» December 5, 2005 «
California Farm Bureau President Bill Pauli
In his final address as president of the California Farm Bureau Federation, Bill Pauli urged members of California's largest farming organization to continue building momentum through leadership.
Pauli ends his eight-year term as CFBF president on Wednesday, the final day of the group's 87th Annual Meeting in Monterey.
"As I think about where our organization is today and how our organization has grown and matured, I think we are well positioned to meet the challenges that we face relating to regulations and government, and the impact that it has on our ability to meet our bottom line," Pauli said.
In his report to delegates, Pauli urged that Farm Bureau leaders encourage unity and strength.
"As a general farm organization, our membership is very diverse," he said. "We represent 350 different commodities that include timber and nurseries. We have organic and conventional farmers. We have many regional differences on air and water. We have some counties that are very rural and others counties that are rapidly urbanizing. The challenge for us at the state level is to always find a balanced approach. Unity is important and we need to continue to work in that vein."
Some challenging issues farmers will face in the coming year, Pauli said, will include upcoming Farm Bill discussions and Endangered Species Act modernization in Congress, World Trade Organization talks, and labor issues, including pending immigration-reform legislation.
"In the end, our future as family farmers and citizens of our great state comes down to several basics: It is about accountability, it is about sensibility and it is about education and common sense," Pauli said. "All of this comes down to leadership, looking forward with a perspective of the past and a vision and a passion for the future."
Pauli grows winegrapes and pears in Potter Valley. He first elected Farm Bureau president in 1997, and has served the maximum four terms in office.
The California Farm Bureau Federation works to protect family farms and ranches on behalf of more than 88,000 members.
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