New Leader Academy

Our vision is to be the resource of trained leaders who will serve all aspects of agriculture and rural communities for Farmers Union and beyond.


Now Accepting Applications!

The future of American agriculture and rural communities lies in the hands of those involved. As our hometowns and the face of family farming change, we need to ensure that those involved in decision-making understand and appreciate the role our communities play in the American economy and our society as a whole.

Our New Leader Academy is centered on the need for strong leaders in agriculture and our rural communities. Join us in this exciting year-long journey that will positively impact your life, livelihood and community for years to come.

Program Details

Four weekend in person events and two online events will be held over the course of the year, with the highlight of the program being a trip to Washington, D.C. for the annual National Farmers Union Legislative Fly-In. Each session will focus on a new area that is instrumental in leadership and personal development. Those areas include but are not limited to: the Farmers Union toolbox, rural empowerment, communication skills, cooperative principles, and local, state and federal government.

Key Dates

Session 1: MFU Lobby Day

Held in St. Paul in late winter/early spring, date TBD


Spring Session: April 7-9, 2024

Held in the Twin Cities area

Summer Session: July 11-13, 2024

Held in Southeast Minnesota

NFU Fly-In

NFU Legislative Fly-In, Washington D.C.

MFU State Convention: November 22-24, 2024

Program participants will finish their year in the NLA at the annual State Convention held in Minneapolis


Online sessions will be available throughout the year

Program Cost

Program participants must purchase a three-year MFU Membership package.

Lodging and meal costs are covered by MFU. A fun activity or free time will be included in each session. Come and network with those who have similar interests and want to make a difference in their communities.

Application Guidelines

  • There is no maximum age for participation; however participants must be 21 years or older to apply and be selected.
  • Applicants should be interested in pursuing leadership roles within Minnesota Farmers Union.
  • Spouses are encouraged to participate but must apply separately.
  • Babies and children may not attend any New Leader Academy activities.

Interested or have questions? Contact MFU Education Director Winona Anderson for more information. 

Farmers Union Welcomes Everyone

If you aren’t an active farmer but still care deeply about food security, renewable energy, trade issues, health care, land use, the environment and myriad other issues, you will find that Minnesota Farmers Union is a place where you have a voice. Help preserve family farms and rural communities by joining MFU as a consumer member.