Jennifer Mengarelli (Rohrer) grew up on her parent's third generation dairy farm in Ridgefield, Washington, USA. At 18 years old, she was chosen to represent the Dairy Farmers of Washington as the Washington State Dairy ambassador or the Media Spokesperson. That experience sparked her desire to work in the media. After graduating from Washington State University, Mengarelli worked as a television news anchor at stations in Billings, MT and Spokane, WA. This experience increased her interest to work back towards her roots in agriculture, get out of the media and begin working in public relations, promoting farmers and ranchers at Northwest Farm Credit Services, an agricultural banking cooperative. At Northwest FCS she had the chance to highlight the stories of farming and ranching customers and help choose deserving scholarship students and rural grant applicants. Her most exciting philanthropic project, The Pink Tractor, helped raise thousands of dollars for local breast cancer awareness organizations in the northwest.
At Norwest FCS, she also met her husband, an Ag banker and farm kid himself, who grew up on a hop and diversified crop farm in the Yakima Valley. Riley and Jennifer met and married and now have their own small farm in Central Washington where they raise hay and beef. "After working in tv, I never imagined I’d ever be back in the country on a farm - but I'm here now and we love it, I can’t imagine raising a family any other way. Caring for land and livestock is a lot of work, especially with a baby, and not everyone would be willing to do the work it takes to keep our small farm going, but it makes us proud to know our daughter will be raised in the country, surrounded by animals and space to explore!”
Recently, Jennifer started her own marketing/public relations consulting business, Farm Girl Marketing. She works with farmers, ranchers and industry groups to help “ag-vocate” and helps them to tell their story, this includes working with the media, to help get their story out to consumers who have misconceptions about what they do for a living. “I’m so proud to be back working in agriculture with the hardest working and most selfless, men and women on the planet. If they don’t tell their story and let people know what is happening on their farms- the care they have for their animals and their crops, who will?”
We all agree that it is so important to tell the story of Agriculture and the Primary Industries. We salute your mission Jennifer! Keep up the great work in such an integral role in keeping the rural story on the radar of our urban friends!