Melissa Ploeckelman is the outreach specialist for the National Children’s Center for Rural Agriculture Health and Safety and the National Farm Medicine Center and is a member of the Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Heath communication team. Ploeckelman is well-known to the Wisconsin agricultural community. She comes from the Colby School District, where she was the agriculture instructor, FFA advisor and Youth Apprenticeship coordinator for six years. Ploeckelman grew up on her family’s dairy farm in Wisconsin. While the farm was sold in 2019, her family still raises a variety of animals from pigs to goats, and chickens to alpacas. They also have a large garden and enjoy cooking maple syrup. Ploeckelman graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in 2010 with a degree in agricultural education. While attending college she served as the 2006-2007 State FFA Parliamentarian, was named 2008 Marathon County Fairest of the Fairs, and selected the 2009 State Fairest of the Fairs. She now enjoys her job focusing on rural and agricultural safety and health. Ploeckelman is passionate to share her story as a means to keep farmers and their families safe!