Written by: Sarah Novak | June 8, 2023
The American Feed Industry Association is thrilled to welcome aboard our new manager of membership and engagement, Kim Atkins! Kim is passionate about membership and is excited to work with AFIA members and provide top-notch member service. Learn more about Kim below.
Atkins: My passion for working at the intersection of agriculture and policy began at an early age. I grew up on a barley, wheat and canola farm in Northern Montana. Throughout most of my childhood, my father served on the boards of various commodity groups. Watching him serve in these positions piqued my interest in the work that associations do on behalf of their membership – providing advocacy and a voice on critical policy issues. When I was nine years old, my family took our first trip to Washington, D.C., and from then on, I became obsessed with the idea of eventually living and working in the D.C. area.
I attended the University of Montana and during my summers I interned in Washington, D.C. After graduating with a degree in political science, I moved to D.C. to look for my first full-time job. I started working for the U.S. Grains Council, where I stayed for many years and served in a variety of positions for the organization. My passion for working in agriculture continued to grow, and I loved the ability to work on behalf of an entire industry, representing members who worked each day to feed a growing world. This love for working with agriculture associations led me to the American Feed Industry Association. I’m really enjoying learning about the diverse products and interests of our membership!
Atkins: I love working in an industry that does such critical work – feeding a growing world. With global demand for demand for meat, milk and eggs on the rise, the work that our members are doing in the animal feed industry is vital to meeting this consumer demand. In my previous position, I worked with corn, sorghum and barley producers as well as many companies in the animal feed industry. Despite having spent almost two decades in the feed grain industry, I’m excited to learn about the important and innovative ways that the animal food industry is working to improve animal health and do so in ways that continue to decrease the environmental impact of production.
Atkins: While I have never held a position solely focused on membership , many of my previous roles had stakeholder outreach as a key function of the job description and that was truly the common thread that I enjoyed most about the positions. I love working with members to increase engagement and make sure that they see value from their membership. The AFIA has so many incredible resources that are available to its members, and I look forward to increasing member involvement with our staff and programs. I am looking forward to serving in a role that allows me to connect our membership with the tools and resources that can help to strengthen and grow their businesses.
Atkins: When I’m not at the office, you can find me spending time with my friends and family (and my sweet pup Scout). I love spending time outdoors, hiking and running!
Please give Kim a warm welcome in the comments below and catch her at upcoming AFIA events!