Eligibility and Cost


Each year up to thirty highly motivated men and women with demonstrated leadership potential are selected from five geographic districts across Nebraska.

Applicants will be actively involved in farming, ranching or business closely related to agriculture. The main source of income must come from these occupations. Men or women are equally encouraged to participate in the Nebraska LEAD Program.

To be eligible for this program the applicant must be able to justify placement in either of the following two categories that relate to the applicant's normal occupational endeavors:

  • Category I: In normal occupational endeavors, applicant must derive a majority income as an owner, operator, employee, officer or director of a farming/ranching operation or major division of a corporation which is a direct result of the production of agricultural commodities (crops and livestock, etc.)
  • Category II: In normal occupational endeavors, applicant must devote a majority of time and derive a majority of income from the business of buying from, selling to, providing education, and/or service to farmers, ranchers and persons or organizations engaged in production agriculture.

Participants must:

  • Complete a written application by June 15 of the year they wish to participate
  • Interview with a district screening committee
  • If selected, sign documentation outlining their commitment to attend seminars
  • Pay an annual participant fee (see below)

If you are considering application, we encourage you to read the "Selection Criteria" on our website.


Each Fellow is required to pay a relatively small participant fee. This fee represents about 17% of the estimated total value of what they receive during their participation in the program. The estimated value of the program is $15,000 while participant fees are $1,250 each of the two years ($2,500 total). Fellows are also required to provide their own transportation to and from seminar locations; carpooling is common.

Some Fellows personally pay their own participant fees while others fund-raise with their employer, local businesses or friends/family to help cover their cost.