Amber Smith the program director of Women in Ranching for the Western Landowners Alliance. Women in Ranching provides transformational space for women to support human synergy around re-envisioning what is possible in agriculture. Amber has been ranching in rural communities for 14 years with her husband and two young children. They currently steward 53,000 acres known as Antelope Springs Ranch in eastern Montana. Amber’s passion is rooted in building a future where rural families thrive, and all people are empowered and supported in pursuing work that aligns with their personal goals and deeply connects them to their community. Her time studying in the Middle East, and six years as Activity Director for a rural nursing home, helped her develop a unique passion for creating spaces of dignity, joy and acceptance.
Highlights of this episode include:
1. Her origins and the management strategy utilized on their operation
2. The bottlenecks of distribution and slaughterhouse access and why efficiency and high productivity create the “externalities” of social and ecological injustice.
3. Why transformation needs allies, strategy, and how intergenerational transmissions can actually hinder the process.
4. Why dynamics in a social fabric can stop progress, and why a sense of belonging and connection to self, community and the land is paramount for regeneration.
5. Why authenticity and openness about the human journey is critical for emotional development, wisdom and systems thinking.