Guest blog post:
John Patterson, CLCS CISR
When I was growing up I lived in an area that depended on farming. I lived near strawberry farms, second only in scale to those in California. I was a bike ride away from Citrus groves where oranges were delicious when fresh off the tree. I walked past acres and acres of cattle pasture on my way to the bus stop each morning. These are all things that I look back on fondly, but didn’t truly appreciate or understand until I was older.
Today some of those orange groves are shopping centers and that cattle pasture is a subdivision. Due to economic change or harsh weather, some of these farmers couldn’t keep going. While agriculture is still important in area that I grew up, my home town which is set between two larger ones, has seen a decline in farming as the demand for developable land has taken hold. This is a real life example for me of not knowing what you’ve got until it’s gone. So the question is, what can I do about it now?
For many years now I have lived in the mountains of Western North Carolina. This is my home. The beauty and majesty I see each and every day fuels my soul. I got married here, I am raising my children here, and I will be glad to live out the rest of my days here. As a father I think about my boys growing up in an area that has a rich history in agriculture and I don’t want them to watch our local farms slowly turn into shopping centers and subdivisions like I did.
Agriculture in America has always been critically important. As an industry it is connected to some many things, from Jobs, to Health, to National Security. I am determined to do my part to help and support our local farming community. As an Insurance Agent, I want farmers to know what their options are and what these coverages can do for them so they can protect what they have worked so hard for. I am also determined to get to know our local farmers and take the time to build the relationships that let them know and trust that I care about their livelihood and I will be there for them today and years from now.
When you care about something, you take the steps needed to show it and to help where you can. Writing this blog will be one of those steps for me. I hope to address issues that impact farmers and their families and to demonstrate how agriculture impacts not only our nation, but the world.
I hope that you will follow along with me on this journey,
John M. Patterson
John Patterson is a dedicated farm agent with Stanberry Insurance serving Western North Carolina. He and his wife Amanda live in Jackson County and have two boys, Liam & Ian. The rest on John’s family is largely spread across Western North Carolina from Asheville to Murphy. John grew up in central Florida in a region that to this day has large production numbers in Citrus, Cattle, & Strawberries. He also has 10 plus years of experience in large scale food & beverage operations where fresh and quality Produce, Meat, & Dairy products were critical to the success of the meals his team prepared for thousands of people.
John is a member of the United Methodist Church as well as Rotary International. He is an Ambassador for the Haywood County Chamber of Commerce and the Vice Chair for the Young Professionals of Haywood County organization. John has completed the Leadership Haywood class as well as the Homegrown Leadership program from the NC Rural Center. He also works with the Wesley Foundation at WCU which is a youth ministry for University Students and with local animal shelters fostering and often adopting dogs in need of a home.
As an Independent Agent, John works with multiple Insurance Companies to find the best solutions for his clients in agriculture from Crop Insurance products to all the coverages needed for your entire farming operation.
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