|This email often covers the latest in irrigated water news, opinions, and events, but at times it’s important to highlight the behind-the-scenes leaders who keep the Family Farm Alliance running strong. Two such leaders, Dan Errotabere and Bill Kennedy, have served the Alliance for decades and deserve a public acknowledgement for their great work as they retire from the board of directors.
Dan Errotabere farms diversified crops from pima cotton to wheat, tomatoes, pistachios and almonds in Riverdale, California. He is a third-generation farmer and along with his two brothers farm about 5,200 acres covering the counties of Fresno and Kings on the western regions of the San Joaquin Valley.
In 1985, Dan received his B.S. in Agribusiness from California State University, Fresno. He has held leadership positions at Westlands Water District, Fresno County Farm Bureau, Fresno Madera Farm Credit Association and San Luis Delta Mendota Water Authority. He is a past board member of the California Cotton Growers Association and the California Farm Bureau Federation. Dan is a Trustee of the Agricultural Foundation for California State University, Fresno. He is married to Susan, who has also been a key player in Alliance fundraising activities, and has two children.
Dan and a small group of Valley farmers came up with the “farmer-lobbyist” concept – a cornerstone program of the Family Farm Alliance – in the mid-1990’s.
“As farmers, we felt that our Federal legislators needed to hear our story directly when formulating policy that affect our ability to farm. In order to do that, we needed to go and see them directly in Washington, DC to share our story on policies that affect our livelihood. The Family Farm Alliance was formed to give farmers that voice in Washington.
Bill Kennedy and his family have ranched in Klamath County, Oregon and Glenn County, California for decades. Bill’s ranch operation incorporates natural resource production with wildlife habitat and includes irrigated pasture, small grains and forest products. He served as a board member of the Alliance from 1995 until earlier this month, and is a past president.
“The Family Farm Alliance is truly a family affair with some very smart, boots-on-the-ground individuals,” he says.
Bill graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in 1979 and earned a certificate in forest management from Oregon State University in 1999. He has been a board member of Alliance since 1995 and is a past president. Other interests include outdoor family activities, bicycle touring, wildlife viewing, skiing, and boating. Bill, and his wife Marilyn, have two daughters.
“It’s been a pleasure to be a part of this organization that knows the importance of getting D.C. staffers out of the beltway and onto our farms and ranches where they can see our natural resource production and the need for irrigation.”
Coming up next: Meet our two new board members, William Bourdeau (CALIFORNIA) and Davy Stix (NEVADA).