FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 20, 2021

ARLINGTON, VA–The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture and NASDA Foundation welcomes 20 students from Minorities in Agriculture and Related Sciences (MANRRS) as a part of the Agriculture Policy Summit to the 2022 Winter Policy Conference. The students represent 13 different universities across the nation.

NASDA CEO, Ted McKinney, said this experience will allow MANRRS students to be advocates for the future of agriculture policy and within their own state departments of agriculture.

“The Agriculture Policy Summit gives minority college students an opportunity to learn about agricultural policy and careers in public service as well as opportunities in the federal and industry sectors of agriculture,” McKinney said.  “If we invest in building foundations for students to be successful in the workforce, specifically within agricultural policy, we will ensure the future of agriculture will continue to be resilient.”

MANRRS COO, Ebony Webber is excited to be continuing this partnership for the third year in a row.

“MANRRS students contribute to the Agriculture Policy Summit through the opportunity to be advocates for the future of agriculture policy and industry relations,” Webber said. “Our diverse group of students are eager to witness how policies are drafted and build career connections.”

The following students were selected:

Akua Adu-Gyamfi, Auburn University
Lucy Asare-Baag, Tuskegee University
Ryan Bake, Utah State University
Kayla Braggs, Florida A&M University
Lawren Caldwell, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
Amanda Coleman, Virginia Tech
Brian Cornish, Auburn University
Tayler Curry, Tuskegee University
Crenel Francis, Purdue University
Maya Horvath, University of Kentucky
Tahirah Jones, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
Cathy Keeler, Tuskegee University
Irene Lewis, The Ohio State University
Tanner Marlow, Mississippi State University
Xavier Miranda, Purdue University
Khya Nelson, Florida A&M University
DeAnthony Price, Alabama A&M
Alexander Robinson, Purdue University
Justin Walker, Tennessee State University
Emmanuel Wallace, Tennessee State University

The purpose of the Agriculture Policy Summit is to expose MANRRS students to agricultural policy and opportunities at state departments of agriculture as it relates to the food and agriculture industries. The students will travel to Washington, D.C. from Feb. 13 – 16, 2022 to connect with industry leaders and learn about organizations and federal agencies that influence and administer agricultural policy.

This experience would not be made possible without generous contributions from sponsors. To become a sponsor of the Agriculture Policy Summit interested persons can visit this link or contact Maria Martinez, Foundation Coordinator, Programs and Grants.


The NASDA Foundation is the only educational and research organization that directly serves the nation’s state departments of agriculture. NASDA Foundation’s mission is to advance agriculture to shape a changing world. The NASDA Foundation works with states to connect farmers to new markets, inspire change across the supply chain, and preserve the environment, while maintaining agricultural viability. To learn more about NASDA Foundation, please visit

NASDA is a nonpartisan, nonprofit association which represents the elected and appointed commissioners, secretaries and directors of the departments of agriculture in all fifty states and four U.S. territories. NASDA grows and enhances American agriculture through policy, partnerships and public engagement. To learn more about NASDA, please visit

MANRRS is a non-profit organization registered in the state of Michigan. MANRRS is a national society that welcomes membership of people of all racial and ethnic group participation in agricultural and related science careers. MANRRS attempts to provide networks to support professional development of minorities. It is a springboard for their entry into and advancement in careers where they otherwise could be lost in the sheer number and established connections of mainstream participants. For more information visit the national website

Contact Information

Maria Martinez
Coordinator, Programs & Grants
Sarah Grace Fowler
Associate Director, Communications