The North Carolina SweetPotato Commission, Inc. announced that Michelle L. Grainger has joined the Commission as Executive Director. With over 20 years of management experience to draw from, Michelle most recently served as Managing Director of NC State University’s Executive Farm Management Program. In this role, her efforts were focused on participant recruitment, fundraising, marketing, and program curriculum management. In this most recent offering she found herself needing to create a waiting list due to participation demand and exceeding program capacity. One of Michelle’s passions is advocacy for agriculture and she leveraged this energy through her overall approach to marketing, promotion, and communications of the program, drawing upon numerous platforms including social media, field days, commodity association meetings, and personalized farm visits.
When asked about her new position, Michelle provided the following, “I am excited to join one of the state’s oldest and largest commodity groups and very much look forward to helping our members and their operations grow while providing value to our consumers and the state’s top industry. The sweetpotato farmers of NC are an impressive group and their level of expertise and knowledge of their product is best-in-class. The strong partnerships the NCSPC has built over the years across our state and country – much less internationally, can be attributed to the incredible leadership and vision of the pioneers of this industry which has been carried through to today. It is an honor to be selected as the next Executive Director and to have the opportunity to help lead this great organization. I can’t wait to get started!”
Of Michelle’s many accomplishments, one of the most recent and prestigious was to deliver a TEDx talk at the TedxCaryWomen event in December 2019, where she shared the importance of both agriculture and the farmer and makes the connection that without them, the US would not have the level of national security that it has been able to provide to its people.
“Michelle has extensive experience working with and for farmers”, said Board President, Brent Leggett. “We could not be more excited to add Michelle to our Executive Team as we continue to expand to meet the needs of our members and consumers alike. We are looking forward to many successes with Michelle at the helm.”