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Hoot set to step down as advocate for Md. ag
By BRUCE HOTCHKISS
EDGEWATER, Md. (Feb. 2, 2016) — Lynne Hoot, the founder of an organization providing association management and legislative watchdog services to eight agricultural organizations, is retiring but she doesn’t want anyone to think that she will be coasting to the finish line.
“There’s an awful lot of work to do,” said Hoot, “and I don’t intend to leave any of it on the table.”
Hoot has let it be known to key members of each of the eight ag organizations for which she is responsible, that she will be stepping into retirement on Sept. 30.
“With nine months’ notice,” she said, “we will have plenty of time to develop an exit strategy.”
Her business is Maryland Agricultural Associates.
She serves as executive director for the Maryland Grain Producers Association, the Maryland Grain Producers Utilization Board, the Maryland Association of Soil Conservation Districts, the Maryland Pork Producers Association, the Delaware-Maryland Agribusiness Association, the Maryland Certified Crop Advisor program, the Maryland Green Industry Council and Croplife America which represents companies manufacturing crop protection chemicals.
Hoot founded the business in 1989 and is recognized as a major spokesperson for the agricultural industry in the state.
“This has not been a job for me,” she said. “It’s a passion.”
Hoot indicated that rather than sell the business to the highest bidder she wants to generate a plan forward that includes her staff, Marguerite Guare and Lindsey Thompson and fits the needs of her existing clients.
The office of the organization is — and always has been — in the basement of the Hoot home in Edgewater, just outside of Annapolis.
It will move.
“If I stayed down there, I would be in it all the time. I have other plans.”
She and her husband, Jerry plan to travel. They have a sailboat, now docked in Florida.
Hoot said she plans to go to the Bahamas next winter. The couple has a daughter in Guam and a son in Utah and they plan to visit.
She said “there are lots of places in the world we have not seen and we intend to expand our horizons.”
“We don’t intend to get bored,” said Hoot.