Soileau receives international award

Richard Bogren  |  10/18/2018 1:52:52 PM

(10/18/18) MANHATTAN, Kan. — The International Association of Programs for Agricultural Leaders recently recognized Bobby Soileau at their annual meeting in Manhattan, Kansas. Soileau, who directs the Agricultural Leadership Development Program for the LSU AgCenter, is the recipient of the 2018 Outstanding International Leadership Program Director award.

“I am honored by the recognition from my peers,” Soileau said. “I value the insight from so many talented directors of leadership programs in the U.S., Canada and other countries.”

The award was presented by Jim Mazurkiewicz, director of the Texas Agricultural Lifetime Leadership Program, and Joe Waldrum, executive secretary of IAPAL.

“Dr. Soileau received this honor for his commitment to programming excellence, superior communication skills and dedication to training emerging rural leaders in Louisiana,” Waldrum said. “He is highly respected by his IAPAL peers in his work with leaders and leadership development. We are delighted and proud to acknowledge publicly his talent and impact with this prestigious award.”

Soileau began working for Ag Leadership in 2005 under the tutelage of Mike Futrell, former Agricultural Leadership Development Program director. He is currently leading his sixth class as the program leader.

Ag Leadership is a two-year program for individuals in agriculture. The curriculum consists of a series of classroom and travel seminars that require approximately 45 training days. Since the first class began in 1988, it has produced 419 graduates.

“Ag Leadership is successful because of the quality participants from all aspects of Louisiana agriculture. We strive to help class members become better informed spokes people in all aspects of agriculture, forestry, natural resources and agribusiness,” Soileau said.

Participants pay a small portion of the costs for their study and travel. The bulk of the program funding is underwritten by endowments in the LSU Foundation, including the Chalkley Family Endowment, the H. Rouse Caffey Endowment, the Robert R. Soileau Scholarship Endowment and the Ag Leaders of Louisiana Endowment.

The Outstanding International Leadership Director Award was initiated by Bill and Polly Pope in 1999. Pope began the Texas Agricultural Lifetime Leadership Program in the late 1980s at Texas A&M University. IAPAL is a consortium of leadership programs in the United States, Canada and several other countries. Most IAPAL member programs have a two-year curriculum designed for future agricultural and rural leaders.

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Joe Waldrum, executive secretary of the International Association of Programs for Agricultural Leaders, presents the 2018 Outstanding International Leadership Program Director award to Bobby Soileau, who directs the Agricultural Leadership Development Program for the LSU AgCenter. Photo provided.

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Previous winners of the International Association of Programs for Agricultural Leaders Outstanding International Leadership Program Director award include: top row from left, Edmond Bonjour (Oklahoma), Joe Waldrum (Arkansas), Jim Mazurkiewicz (Texas), Rob Black (Ontario, Canada), and seated, from left, Beth Archer (Indiana), Bobby Soileau (Louisiana), Marie Hvidsten (North Dakota), Cindy Garretson-Weibel (Wyoming). Photo provided.

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