Minnesota Farm Advocate Oral History Project: Interview with Evelyn Kluender
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Description BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION: David and Evelyn Kluender and their son (and his family) farm together. They had a financial crisis in their own operation beginning in 1985, and this, together with a 'rip-off' being perpetrated by a local man against financially-troubled farmers in their area, led to their first contact with the Farm Advocate Program (specifically, with Anne de Meurisse). SUBJECTS DISCUSSED: Evelyn became the first Advocate in their community, although she and David were at first afraid that, if she accepted, Farm Credit (their lending institution) would make them a 'whipping post'. They finally agreed to take the job if they could both attend Advocate training sessions and could work together. Evelyn has her own system of analyzing a client farmer's financial situation: She determines his income and how much he would have to service his debts - then she looks for an arrangement that would provide the cash flow necessary to handle that amount. This has worked well, notably with Farm Credit. She has noticed that bankers and loan officers previously unwilling to even talk with a farmer about negotiating a settlement often reverse themselves and come to terms when the farmer indicates that he plans to bring a Farm Advocate into the matter. She attributes this to the respect that the Advocates have gained. Evelyn believes that her own success in negotiation can be explained by her approach of 'don't take no for an answer'. She points out that both sides are parties to a financial deal gone wrong, and that it is unreasonable for one to take all of the loss - a deal must be struck. She sees advantages in talking with clients at her home, rather than at a Center (e.g. privacy, a higher comfort level). Before mediations, she studies the particular rules and regulations that will be the most pertinent and types a proposal. In mediation, it is preferable that the farmer himself explains the proposal. Bankers and lenders should be treated decently; if you are going to get mad, wait until you are at home.
Quantity 1.5 hours sound cassette
22 pages transcript
Format Content Category: sound recordings
Content Category: text
Creation Interviewee: Kluender, Evelyn
Interviewer: Hunter, Dianna
Interviewer: Meter, Ken
Made in [vicinity] Bricelyn, Faribault County, Minnesota, United States
Subjects Made in [vicinity] Bricelyn, Faribault County, Minnesota, United States
Dates Creation: 04/27/1988
Holding Type Oral History - Interview
Identifiers OH 37
Accession Number AV1991.158.23
More Info MHS Library Catalog
Related Collections Oral History - Project, MHS Collection, project: 'Minnesota Farm Advocate Oral History Project'

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