LANSING — Michigan Farm Bureau welcomes Audrey Sebolt as its new associate horticulture and industry relations specialist. Starting Monday, May 20, Sebolt is responsible for addressing issues affecting the horticulture industry while developing alliances with horticulture-associated organizations.
She will also help coordinate the Farm Bureau’s collaborative efforts with commodity executives in the agriculture industry.
“Audrey has tremendous industry and research experience that will benefit our organization,” said Ernie Birchmeier, manager of the Center for Commodity Farm and Industry Relations for the Michigan Farm Bureau. “Her knowledge will prove valuable when challenged with critical issues our specialty crop growers deal with daily.”
Sebolt spent the last 20 years as a research and project assistant at Michigan State University where she worked on two separate USDA Specialty Crop Research Initiative grants. One of those grants — the RosBREED project — focused on disease resistance while maintaining high horticulture quality in multiple fruit varieties. The project is a critical component to enhancing the state and national fruit industry.
Furthermore, Sebolt was responsible for developing educational materials, facilitating collaboration across multiple disciplines and project teams, and managing logistics for yearly stakeholder field days and international collaborator meetings. She also managed monthly communication between research team leaders and provided scientific, managerial and budget support to the research projects.
Sebolt grew up on her family’s farm in Oceana County where they produced fruit and asparagus. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Michigan State University in Crop and Soil Sciences.