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Perham dairy farmers honored as East Otter Tail County emerging leaders

Dave and Jen Schwantes operate a 90-cow dairy farm outside of Perham. Along with their cows, they raise corn, alfalfa, sorghum and barley on 300 acres for feed.

People smiling for a photo.
Dave and Jen Schwantes of Perham are the 2022 East Otter Tail County representatives for the Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program.
Contributed / University of Minnesota Extension

Dave and Jen Schwantes are East Otter Tail County's representatives in the 2022 Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program.

The couple operates a 90-cow dairy farm outside of Perham. Along with their cows, they raise corn, alfalfa, sorghum and barley on 300 acres for feed.

They, along with individuals from 16 other counties in northwestern and west central Minnesota, are being honored for their participation in the emerging leadership program and for their commitment to leadership in their community.

While meeting in Detroit Lakes, Thief River Falls and Mahnomen, the Schwanteses have networked with leaders from across the region and gained insight on personal leadership styles, communication, rural issues and facilitating effective meetings, according to a University of Minnesota Extension news release. The group members set goals for how they will lead and follow in their work and community roles.

The theme for the Class of 2022, “Be,” has served as a reminder that it isn't what we accomplish, but rather how we will be in our relationships and in our leadership roles.

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University of Minnesota Extension coordinates the Emerging Leadership Program and provides
educational content. Local partners include the Northwest Minnesota Foundation, Red River Valley
Development Association and many regional donors.

The Perham couple will be honored for their commitment to leadership and their community during a recognition event on March 26, which will be broadcast on Facebook Live at 6:30 p.m. The public is invited to join the event online at facebook.com/groups/RRVELP/ .

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