About Us

Our Mission is three-fold

How We Impact

Scholarships

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Annual Conference

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Annie’s Project

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Meet our Executive Board

DONETTE SPANN

PRESIDENT

BIO

Donette has been with the Arkansas Beef Council for almost 20 years. Nineteen of those years as Promotions Director and most recently as Administrator. In this position, she manages the promotion and education of beef to consumers, the retail and foodservice industry and health care industry under the direction of the producer-driven beef checkoff program. She grew up on a cow/calf farm in southwest Missouri in the tiny town of Niangua and attended Missouri State University and majored in Animal Science.

EVETTE BROWNING

1ST VICE PRESIDENT

BIO

Evette moved to Little Rock from Los Angeles, California. She began her career in agriculture at the Arkansas Forestry Commission in 2002. Since then, she has served in many roles to include Executive Assistant to the Director, Outreach Coordinator, Minority and Women-Owned Business Officer, Business Travel Custodian, Title IV of Civil Rights Act of 1964 Coordinator, Grievance Officer, Business Continuity Planner, Webmaster, Alternate Website Manager, Grant Review Team Leader, etc. Passionate about helping others, the role of Outreach Coordinator fits her and is dear to her heart which led to her induction into the Communication’s Group Women in Industry in 2020. She is on the Board of Directors for Arkansas Land & Farm Development Corporation and the Arkansas Land & Community Development Corporation. She also is on the Sustainable Forestry & Land Retention’s Policy and Communications Committees and is active on the Arkansas State Employees Grievance Appeals Panel. In her spare time, Evette loves to shop, participate in volunteer work, spend time with family, and travel. Evette is married to Robert with one grown son, Isiah.

LINDSEY HOLTZCLAW

2ND VICE PRESIDENT

BIO

Lindsey lives in Madison County with her husband, Jes, and son, John Monroe. She says her passion for agriculture started by growing up on her grandparents’ farm in central Arkansas, but later grew thanks to her involvement with FFA. Lindsey is a graduate of Arkansas Tech University and now serves as Communications Specialist for Farm Credit of Western Arkansas. She says her favorite responsibility in her role is telling the stories of western Arkansas’ farmers and ranchers. Lindsey is also an active Farm Bureau member and serves on her church’s worship team.    

BARBIE JOHNSON

TREASURER

BIO

Barbie is an active partner on her family’s row crop farm in Desha County. She and her husband Lee along with their children Gena, Ashlee and Jake take great pride their farm is recognized as an Arkansas Century Farm. When not on the farm, she enjoys working as a Master Gardener of Drew County as well as Area 12 Special Olympics Director. Through ARWIA, she has learned of conservation practices that they have implemented on their family farm.

JANE BRYANT

SECRETARY

BIO

Jane and her husband Raymond “retired” back to the farm 20 years ago and are currently in the process of remodeling the house Raymond was born in. Today, the Bryants rent their row-crop farm in Jefferson County. They have made several improvements to their farm, including leveling, laying underground pipe, and building a reservoir to store drainage water for reuse. Jane stays busy keeping up with her four grown children, seven grandchildren and by being involved in the Altheimer Methodist Church and the Altheimer community.

Meet our Area Representatives

PAM BILLINGSLEY

NORTHEAST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Pam has a degree from Arkansas State University in agriculture and currently lives on a farm in Sharp County. Her passion for conservation is clear when looking at her 30-year career. Pam serves on the Envirothon Board and enjoys teaching children about conservation. She also sits on the Soil and Water Conservation Society Board and Sharp County Farm Bureau Board, is a certified Annie’s Project Facilitator and in her spare time, enjoys gardening, fishing, hunting and cooking.

MONICA GRIFFIN

NORTHEAST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Monica lives in Pulaski County with her husband Tyler and sons Barrett and Owen. They own Cave Creek Farms where they raise beef cattle, goats and honey bees. Monica was an agriculture education teacher for 9 years before becoming a feed dealer for Umbarger & Sons Feed. Monica enjoys sharing with people about opportunities in agriculture, FFA and how to be wise consumers of agriculture products.

MELISSA FAULKNER

NORTHWEST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Melissa and her husband Brett live on a 55 acre farm in Casa with an additional 70 acres for their hay production. Melissa enjoys life living on the farm and assisting her husband with daily tasks. They are also members of the Arkansas Cattleman’s Association. In her spare time she loves working with her flowers and plants with hopes of one day owning her own greenhouse.

MICHELLE BUFKIN

NORTHWEST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Michelle is the Membership Director and manages communications for the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association. Her favorite part of her role is being able to tell the stories of cattle producers across the state through the ACB magazine and social media. Michelle lives in Roland, just west of Little Rock. Her family has a purebred cattle operation back home in Alabama and sells freezer beef.

JENNIFER GRIFFIN

SOUTHEAST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Jennifer is the District Conservationist for the Natural Resources Conservation Service. She has a degree from The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff where she majored in agriculture business with a minor in agronomy. Jennifer’s hobbies include sharing/speaking about the many opportunities in agriculture, spending time with family, cooking and traveling.

JENNIFER HILL

SOUTHEAST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Jennifer is the 5th generation of her family to live on their family farm in Portland, Arkansas. Jennifer and her husband have been married 30 years and are exceptionally proud that their two sons and one grandson are the 6th and 7th generations to live and work on the farm. Jennifer is president of her family farm and also works as a Registered Nurse in the Outpatient Surgery Department at Chicot Memorial Medical Center.

CALEIGH WATLINGTON

SOUTHWEST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Caleigh is a recent graduate of Southern Arkansas University where she received a B.S. in Agribusiness and a M.B.A. in Supply Chain Management. She works for Farm Credit of Western Arkansas as a Loan Officer in their Magnolia Branch. Caleigh grew up on a beef cattle and poultry operation in Lincoln, AR and says her experiences in 4-H and FFA led her to a career in agriculture. She currently lives in Buckner, AR where her and her husband, Coe, have a small commercial cattle herd.

MADISON TRAVIS

SOUTHWEST AREA REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Madison is a graduate of Southern Arkansas University where she received a B.S in Agriculture Business and a M.B.A with Agriculture emphasis. Madison and her husband, Michael, live in Jonesboro, AR where she serves as a Crop Insurance Servicing Agent for Rabo AgriFinance. Madison’s time spent in her local FFA chapter began her love for agriculture, allowing her to see the impact that it has on the world.

DEEDEE ALSTON

BOARD MEMBER AT LARGE

BIO

Deedee lives in Polk County with her husband Luke.  Together they are the 4th generation owners of her family farm and the 5th generation to own his family’s Century farm. With a long history of agriculture in both families from timber to cattle to crops to agritourism, they are both strong advocates of agriculture and the rural way of life. Deedee has an MBA from University of Arkansas Little Rock, is a Master Gardner, serves on the Arkansas Agritourism Board of Directors and is a licensed realtor who loves working to help her clients learn about the production possibilities of farm land.

ASHLYN USSERY

COLLEGIATE REPRESENTATIVE

BIO

Ashlyn is a recent graduate of the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville where she received her M.S. in Agricultural Communications. She works as the Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator for the Northeast Rice Research and Extension Center in Jonesboro. Ashlyn grew up in central Arkansas and says that her involvement with 4-H is what lead her to a career in agriculture. In her spare time, Ashlyn enjoys being outdoors with Tilly, her mini Australian Shepard, as well as spending time with family and friends.

AWIA Membership Program

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