Rural America Fund announces steering committee, gives a voice to struggling Michigan farmers

Committee will highlight how rural Michiganders have been left behind

WATCH: Campaign releases new video highlighting economic pain across rural Michigan

LANSING, Mich. – To give a greater voice to Michigan’s struggling agricultural community, Rural America 2020, a campaign dedicated to highlighting the negative impacts of President Trump’s policies in rural America, today announced members of its Michigan steering committee. The group, comprised of farmers, agri-business professionals and rural residents from across the state, will work to shed a light on how rural Michigan is being left behind and is worse off due to four years of the current administration’s policies and costly trade wars. In conjunction with the steering committee announcement, the campaign also released a new video that highlights the negative impact of Trump administration policies on rural Michigan.

“The Michigan steering committee will serve as an alternative voice to misinformation and serve as an advocate for policies that make a difference for the future of our rural communities,” said Tim Boring, Michigan steering committee member. “Michigan is the second most agriculturally diverse state in the nation and our producers, processors and consumers have a unique set of needs that must be part of our national policy agenda.”

Members of the Michigan steering committee come from across the state and represent a diverse knowledge of the industry. Members include:

  • Tim Boring is a sixth-generation cash crop farmer in mid-Michigan. He previously served as the vice president of the Michigan Agri-Business Association where he worked to develop strategies and approaches to address cropping system rotations, new market potentials, crop quality standards, water quality challenges, and continuing education opportunities.  He also served as the research director with the Michigan Soybean Promotion Committee. Boring has a masters and doctorate degrees in Crop and Soil Science from Michigan State University.
  • Cheryl Kobernik is the owner of North Star Organics cherry farm in Frankfort. She previously chaired the USDA’s Farm Service Agency State Committee in Michigan from 2010-2017. Kobernik is the clinical consultant of the NW Michigan Community Mental Health Authority.
  • Howard Wetters owns a milk hauling business, which services small dairy farms throughout Michigan’s Thumb region. Wetters owns and manages a centennial farm and trucking business in Kawkawlin. He also represented the Bay City area in the Michigan House of Representatives from 1993-1998.
  • Christine White has worked in the agriculture community since 1978. She previously served as deputy director of policy for the Michigan Department of Agriculture during the Granholm administration and as the State Executive Director of the Farm Service Agency from 2009-2017.

Each steering committee member knows firsthand how the lack of a comprehensive rural policy agenda have hurt families, farms and the communities they call home. Additional steering committees in critical 2020 states will be announced in the coming weeks.

Rural America Fund 2020 advocates for policies that benefit agriculture and rural America. The organization is fighting to ensure that in 2020 the economic devastation brought to rural America is not ignored. In Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and other states Rural America Fund 2020 is working to highlight the empty promises and misguided policies that have left farmers and ranchers hurting. Learn more by visiting

For media interviews with Rural America Fund Michigan steering committee members contact Gabby Abel at