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Illinois Agri-Food Alliance Awarded Grant

For Immediate Release


Nora Nolden, Communications Consultant

[email protected] or (651) 245-6804




Compeer Financial Awards MORE for Agriculture Grant to Illinois 

Agri-Food Alliance

The $50K grant will fund Agnitor initiative 


Bloomington, Ill., (March 21, 2023)  Compeer Financial’s Fund for Rural America has awarded $50,000 to the Illinois Agri-Food Alliance through their MORE for Agriculture Grant.

This grant, now in its fifth year, supports innovative programs that encompass four qualities:

Mission: Aligns with the mission of Compeer Financial, enriches agriculture and rural communities

Opportunity: Provides a new opportunity for clients or future clients, fills a known void in agricultural and rural markets, is a new and innovative project

Replication: Can be replicated by others to serve different geographic areas, with the ability for future collaboration

Evolution: Evolves over time to create a better future for agriculture and rural America

Support for the Illinois Agri-Food Alliance will go toward The Agnitor, a platform that connects Illinois students to agri-food careers. Illinois Agri-Food Alliance worked with a cross-sector collaborative of agri-food stakeholders to develop Agnitor with Pathful, a digital college and career readiness system. The platform will focus on engaging high school students in virtual chats to explore agriculture, food and natural resources careers. The goal is to increase awareness and interest in the industries and explore career opportunities across Illinois. The branded platform will launch in 2023. 

“More than 90% of agriculture and food sector jobs are not on a farm,” said Tyler Strom, managing director of the Illinois Agri-Food Alliance. “Through Agnitor, we hope to showcase to students that no matter their passion or career trajectory, all paths can lead to a valuable and sustainable career in agriculture, food and natural resources.”

The Compeer Financial Fund for Rural America Trustees asked Compeer team members to identify programs and projects they believe create MORE for agriculture. In all, nearly $900,000 has been awarded to 20 organizations since 2019.

 “Compeer Financial is committed to supporting the growth and success of agriculture in Illinois and beyond,” said Melissa Roth, team leader of human resources at Compeer Financial. “By fostering connections between students and industry professionals through Agnitor, we can help today’s generation gain a stronger understanding and appreciation for our agri-food system and spark a lasting interest in the many different jobs and careers the industry has to offer.”

For more information, visit

About the Fund for Rural America

The Compeer Financial Fund for Rural America is the corporate giving program of Compeer Financial, structured to support Compeer Financial’s mission to enrich agriculture and rural America. Compeer Financial’s Board of Directors has dedicated one percent of annual net earnings to support the Fund’s focus areas of education, youth engagement, rural development and community enrichment, agricultural advocacy and development, and cooperative initiatives. The Fund is managed by a Board of Trustees, made up of team members from Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin and members of the Compeer Financial Board of Directors. More information about opportunities available through the Fund can be found at

About Compeer Financial

Compeer Financial is a member-owned Farm Credit cooperative serving and supporting agriculture and rural communities. The $29.7 billion organization provides loans, leases, risk management and other financial services throughout 144 counties in Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Based in the Upper Midwest, Compeer Financial exists to champion the hopes and dreams of rural America, while providing personalized service and expertise to clients and the agriculture industry.

Compeer Financial is the third largest cooperative of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide network of lending institutions supporting agriculture and rural communities with reliable, consistent credit and financial services. Learn more about Compeer Financial.



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