“Most of my encouragement comes from the amazing people I have met in Agriculture. We are a very diverse group with a wealth of experiences; there is so much we can learn from each other. I’m encouraged by the triumphs and successes of my peers.” -Melissa Laurent,
You might have a preconceived notion of what agriculture is, who you think the faces of agriculture are and what they do on a daily basis. But one thing I have learned in agriculture is there is a vast array of people with passions that make up the industry that grow and produce food, feed, fiber, fuel and flowers across the globe. Agriculture in social media has connected me to people I would have never known otherwise and Melissa Laurent is one of those women in agriculture. Melissa teaches me about Brahman cattle, a breed not common in the northern parts I come from but a breed of cattle that can tolerate the heat where Melissa resides in Texas. Every Wednesday I see her Facebook photo that says “Happy Hump Day” on it with a photo of her humpy cows. And I love them! In addition, Melissa shares her passion for agriculture and on issues important to her. She is an “agvocate” that takes a stand.
Melissa, originally from Baytown, TX and now resides in Winnsboro, TX with her husband of 24 years, Jim who she fondly calls “The Chickenman”. Their daughter Mandy-Jo Laurent is 22 years old and working towards earning her Master’s degree at Texas Tech University in Muscle Biology.
Get to know Melissa Laurent, in her words as a woman in agriculture.
What is your role in agriculture today? We have a small herd of registered Brahman cattle and we haul show cattle to shows in TX, OK & LA. I’m an active Agvocate for agriculture and beef, both online and in my community and beyond.
How has agriculture shaped your life? It has allowed me to live my dream in the country even though I grew up in the city.
What excites you about your community? I love working with youth and have actively participated in the National Beef Ambassador Program and out Texas Beef Leaders of Tomorrow for many years. I love the energy and passion that young people bring to our beef community and I enjoy working with them and helping equip them to be the future of Agriculture.
When was the last time you tried something for the first time? Well I try new recipes out all the time, my husband and I both love to cook. But I will be speaking to a group of my peers about using social media to promote agriculture and their farm/ranch for the first time later this month-YIKES! I’m more comfortable speaking with youth.
What do you do to encourage others? Who/what serves as a source of encouragement for you? I am a big card sender and letter writer. I love to send words of encouragement, thanks and appreciation to those I come in contact with. Sometimes just a quick note of how proud you are of someone can give them just the boost they need to take it to the next level. Most of my encouragement comes from the amazing people I have met in Agriculture. We are a very diverse group with a wealth of experiences; there is so much we can learn from each other. I’m encouraged by the triumphs and successes of my peers.
Which children’s book best describes your childhood/life? Probably The City Mouse and the County Mouse from Aesop’s Fables.
What is your favorite home-cooked meal? A medium Strip Steak off the grill with a loaded baked potato and a fresh garden salad. For dessert fresh blackberry cobbler with a scoop of Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla Ice cream.
If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor? Hmmm… that is a tough one, but if I could only choose one it would probably be Rachel Williams Cutrer of Ranch House Designs. I could learn so much about design and marketing and Brahman cattle from Rachel.
If you had the opportunity to get a message across to a large group of people, what would your message be? That across this country farmers and ranchers and their families are working hard every day to bring a great product to your table and we are constantly looking for ways to do an even better job of providing safe, wholesome and nutritious food for both our family and yours.
What makes you smile? Now that is an easy one…Long-earred Humpy calves no doubt!
Stay connected with Melissa Laurent on her blog, Facebook page (with cute pictures of Brahmans), Twitter and all of her Brahman cattle on Pinterest.
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Follow along with these other 30 Days Bloggers including my friend Holly Spangler who corralled us all to do this in the first place who writes today about 5 Things I Didn’t Know When I Married A Farmer.
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Carolyn Morley says
I’ve known Melissa Laurent for 20 years and she is the “real deal”. She’s enthusiastic and energetic about anything she undertakes. She’s honest and forthright and she loves her Humpy friends! She’s not afraid of much of anything and will heed the call of her animals or her human friends no matter the hour. She and her “Chickenman” have also raised a beautiful and accomplished daughter. Great article about a wonderful woman in a tough business! Hats off to Mel!