Trisha Wagner has served as the Jackson County Agriculture Educator since 2008. Trisha’s primary areas of programming for the needs of her clientele are: farm risk management, soils and nutrient management and sustainable food systems.
Trisha has been active in the nutrient management, dairy and FARM teams statewide and served in leadership roles for these teams. She has authored several factsheets, bulletins, and presentations. Her translation of the skid steer safety training DVD into Spanish has extended the reach of Extension to Hispanic audiences. She has enabled Spanish-speaking clientele to attend programs in dairy reproduction, risk management and the Wisconsin Farm and Industry short course through her translations.
Trisha has contributed to the University knowledge base through her cooperation in a number of on-farm research projects in integrated pest management, nutrient management, and dairy management.
Jackson County is very diverse agriculturally; the dairy industry has the largest economic impact (445.5 million in sales). In addition to livestock, Jackson County has a large fruit and berry industry and leads the state in production of Christmas trees. Trisha has dedicated a large portion of her programming efforts to local dairy and livestock industry issues and the farming operations that support the diverse and vital industry in Jackson County. Her educational programs have also addressed the growing problems of food insecurity in Wisconsin and specifically in Jackson County.
Trisha offers a Bookkeepers Bootcamp and software workshops to help participants use current computer software to keep their farm financial records. In a natural progression, she then offered programs to help use the information obtained in statements to make farm business decisions. Trisha extends this programming to regional and national audiences.
She has done extensive programming in farm succession; with Wisconsin’s aging farm managers are interested in nurturing the next generation of farmers while providing for their own retirement. Workshops followed by small group and individual consultations provided an effective way of addressing many issues associated with farm succession. Trisha conducted a farm transfer impact study of 16 Jackson County family farms who participated in her succession programs and 13 had started their farm transfer process using the tools provided by her programming.