For this member spotlight, we bring you Rebecca Rutan, ARA. Rebecca has been an ASFMRA member since 2013, and recently finished up her term as the 2021-2022 President of the Idaho-Utah Chapter. She currently works as an appraiser for Northwest Farm Credit Services.
When did you begin your career in ag appraisal?
I began my career in agriculture appraisal in 2013, and became interested in the profession after taking a college course. I met Susan Robbins, ARA, while working for the Idaho Department of Lands and was able to make a transition to the Farm Credit system and began working on my state certification. My degree is in Range and Livestock Management. I love the ag appraisal profession because it's a mix of many things that interest me: real estate, ranch and farm management and people. Appraising has allowed me to meet many wonderful people in the ag industry and see properties I wouldn't otherwise travel to. We are also in a very interesting time in our market and history, it's exciting to be a part of that.How was your term serving as President of the Idaho-Utah Chapter? Did you accomplish what you had hoped to?
My term as President of the Idaho-Utah Chapter has just recently come to an end. It was very challenging organizing meetings during the COVID era, so many "what ifs" to plan for. We have an excellent board and we were able to host two in-person meetings. Just being able to get those pulled off given the current restraints is an accomplishment in itself. Networking is a valuable part of any Chapter's success.How does it feel to have earned your ARA certification? What was your biggest takeaway from the process?
Completing my ARA during COVID was another challenge altogether and I'm very thankful to have earned my designation. The process makes you grow as an appraiser and the demo is a good exercise. It reminds me not to become complacent while appraising. Each property is different and one can never have too many tools in the toolbox when it comes to tackling an appraisal problem. People in this organization genuinely care about your success. I had a lot of people in my corner, cheering me on through the process. It's one of the things I enjoy most about this profession, the people.
Is there any part of your professional experience that has been especially fulfilling or rewarding for you? How so?
The people in this profession are what make the job rewarding, no matter who my employer is or if I worked for myself. The agriculture industry as a whole has the best people to work with.