Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Women in Ag Leadership Conference
Meet Dr. Dianne Bystrom - Speaker
Dr. Dianne Bystrom, director of the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics at Iowa State University, will be holding a session titled “Making a Difference Through Public Service” as part of the Women in Ag Leadership Conference on Nov. 28.
Dr. Bystrom’s presentation will focus on how women can impact public policy by serving on boards or by running for elected office.
“This conference will help channel women into what they can do,” which may not necessarily mean running for elected office, but instead, involving themselves with boards and commissions, Bystrom said.
When it comes to considering political topics that tend to be affiliated with men and women, agriculture has consistently remained a gender-neutral subject. Similarly, men hold no stereotypical advantage over women with voters as it relates to their ability to represent agricultural issues.
“[Agriculture] is not a male or female issue, according to the latest survey research,” Bystrom said.
Over the past four decades, women have increased their presence in both legislative positions and governorships throughout the United States. However, nearly two thirds of American voters believe it is more difficult for women to be elected to office than men.
“Women are more likely to be elected to office than men, but just so few of them run,” Bystrom said. “It's really about turning their interest into action.”
In addition to encouraging women to pursue leadership positions on boards and through public office, Bystrom hopes to stress to attendees the importance of voting in an election.
Those who are interested in attending the Women in Ag Leadership Conference on Nov. 28 can register here.