Allmer earns CFB Service to Ag Award
It wasn’t ever Brian Allmer’s intention to get into farm broadcasting but, when times called for additional off-farm income to maintain the family dryland and cattle operation, he did. Utilizing his strong faith, he said it was a situation where a closed door, led to an opportunity. That move has turned into The Barn-Brian Allmer Radio Network and his dedication to the state’s agriculture news, garnered him the Colorado Farm Bureau Service to Agriculture Award.
There was a time Allmer said he would turn the television on and be frustrated by what he heard. This in the days Oprah Winfrey spent vilifying the safety of beef, Allmer thought with his 4-H and FFA background, he could be an advocate for the agriculture industry. After some time with KSIR, he struck out on his own to concentrate on highlighting youth in agriculture.
Since then, Allmer has been a fixture announcing events including the Colorado FFA Convention, the livestock shows at the Colorado State Fair, Colorado Farm Show, the cattle shows at the National Western Stock Show, the Briggsdale Classic Open Jackpot show (which he co-founded), various livestock shows, the Governors Ag Forum, the Colorado Agriculture Hall of Fame, as well as coverage of events important to the state’s agriculture industry.
He has interviewed and become friends with producers and leaders across the state and said he enjoys all of his interviews though one with Orion Samuelson comes to mind as particularly memorable.
Samuelson, who at the time was the president of the National Association of Farm Broadcasters, also sought off-farm employment to supplement his family’s dairy farm and became one of the best-known farm broadcasters in the country.
“Every interview is enjoyable to me because it gives me a chance to learn about their background and what led them to their field in the ag industry and learn more about whichever organization or event they represent,” he said.
In addition to live streaming events, Allmer’s daily reports — seven per day and two weekend shows — are heard across the state and are available to download online and posted to social media.
“What an opportunity we have in front of us now compared to when Evan (Slack) started,” he said.
Allmer is cognizant of those who came before him in farm broadcasting. On his wall is the framed, handwritten letter sent by the widow of a former KOA farm broadcaster, letting Allmer know that her late husband listened to him each morning and wanted him to know he was doing a good job.
With so much information at his fingertips, keeping on top of the information can be overwhelming, he said. A one-man band, Allmer knows the challenges of tracking the pulse of a fast-moving industry and the challenges facing the industry now.
When Allmer received the Colorado Farm Bureau Service to Agriculture award, he said he knew there were others — many of whom he interviews — who are more deserving. His wife, Connie, and his 87-year-old mother were there to see him accept the award and he said the room was filled with people he’s interviewed who have supported him and become his friends.
“I don’t do it for that reason,” he said. “We want to get the truth out about what we do in agriculture to the best of our ability. Getting the story out is our thanks.” ❖
— Gabel is an assistant editor and reporter for The Fence Post. She can be reached at email@example.com or (970) 392-4410.