New Opportunities And New Challenges
The year 2011 will go down as a challenging one for Farm Bureau – both for our farmers and for our insurance company. From the tornadoes and hail storms in the spring to the drought during the summer on to Hurricane Irene’s appearance in the fall, both industries – agriculture and insurance – took a hit.
Our farmers epitomize resilience and determination—as does the insurance company they chartered in 1953. Dr. Seuss expresses their spirit in a whimsical way: “I learned there are troubles of more than one kind. Some come from ahead, others come from behind. But I’ve bought a big bat. I’m all ready, you see. Now my troubles are going to have trouble with me.”
The tornadoes and hail came from behind with little warning and Irene attacked from ahead, as forecast on television and radio.
But we’re Farm Bureau. Like all strong families, we pull together when catastrophe strikes.
Although farm income will be hurt, most of those farmers who provide our food and fiber will persevere. For that, they deserve our gratitude and respect.
Agriculture will recover, as will North Carolina Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company. Farm Bureau comprises a team of winners: visionary management led by a board whose focus is on our policyholders, a dedicated home office staff, and a professional, caring force of almost 850 agents across our state. I express my appreciation to all of our agents and employees for their many extra efforts in meeting the needs of our members in the aftermath of the 2011 storms.
But, we certainly are not alone. Many people in our state are suffering during this holiday season from the aftermath of natural disasters or from the foreclosures and joblessness resulting from the nation’s struggling economy. Some are hungry; many have lost homes; others require medical attention. Numbers and percentages become very personal when they are describing you or members of your family and friends.
This year, above all else, I encourage Farm Bureau members to make an extra effort to help those in need. There are a number of worthwhile organizations to which we can give with confidence, knowing our contributions will reach those who lack the necessities of life. Let’s remember that while we offer thanks during Thanksgiving for our blessings, the Christmas season is all about giving.
As the New Year approaches, Farm Bureau will move forward. We will move forward with vision, with preparation and with steadfast faith. The year 2012 is a new one with new opportunities, and yes, new challenges.