This week KY Corn staff Laura Knoth and Kirstie Darnall accompanied the Waterways Council, Inc. President and CEO Michael Toohey and Senior Vice President Deb Calhoun in a visit with Executive Editor, Neil Budde and Reporter, James Bruggers of the Courier Journal.
Also present were Matt Ricketts, Vice President of Crounse Corporation and Mark Knoy, President and CEO of American Commercial Barge Line. All in attendance conveyed the significance of the inland waterways to their unique segment. The importance of funding to repair and modernize our current waterways features was communicated.
"WCI believes in a 3-pronged approach to educating its audiences about the critical importance of the waterways and its infrastructure. The first is lobbying. Second is grassroots activities. And the third is media relations. We have a great story to tell, so meeting with editorial boards and reporters is a priority," said Deb Calhoun, Senior Vice President, Waterways Council, Inc.
KY Corn discussed the importance of inland waterways to grain farmers. "The Ohio and Mississippi River are crucial to our farmers ability to reach a large portion of its market. Nearly one-third of our corn travels to the Gulf of Mexico. Everyone of those bushels pass through a series of locks along the way," said Laura Knoth, Executive Director, Kentucky Corn Growers Association. "Waterways are the safest, greenest and most efficient method of transportation of grain and other products important to our industry. We were excited to participate in this collaborative effort and portray these points to one of Kentucky's most important media outlets."
Most of the technical aspects of the discussion are linked in this document.