McKayla (Fricker) Smucker, Pure Seed, Canby, OR
McKayla is a Co-Chair of the Communications and PSA Cares Committees for the Pacific Seed Association and serves on the PSA board. She is the Communications Director for Pure Seed.
We asked McKayla a few questions about her thoughts on the Industry, her career and a few fun questions about herself.
Company/ Person Questions
How long have you worked at the company?
I started working at Pure-Seed Testing at the age of 13 during the summers. In 2015 I started at Pure Seed in the marketing department. Ultimately, I have been a part of this industry all my life, as Pure Seed is my family’s company.
What do you or your company do for public service or outreach efforts?
We have started a foundation in our founder’s name, the Bill Rose Foundation. The mission is to bridge the gap between the academic world and the turfgrass industry. I serve on the board of directors.
We donate seed to local high school sport facilities
I am also a High School Track and Field coach
PSA Questions How does PSA benefit your company?
PSA benefits our company by educational opportunities, sharing the latest news on the seed sector, and relationship building opportunities to open avenues to advocate together on the importance of seed.
What’s your favorite part of being a member of PSA?
The relationships and PSA’s push toward diversifying their leadership team.
How many PSA events have you attended?
Two, the 96th and the 97th conventions.
Favorite Convention location?
Industry Questions What do you love most about the seed industry?
The people, the passion and the innovation
What advice would you give to someone who wants to enter agriculture?
Your part in an agriculture career is so much deeper than you can imagine. The passion and pride that you will ultimately develop when you enter a career path in ag will drive you through the challenges, ups and downs that you will face in everyday ag. And it is so worth it.
What’s a quote you love about the seed industry?
"Better seed, better life". America Seed Trade Association
What career advice do you live by? Who gave it to you?
"If you wake up looking forward to your work day, you chose the right career." My husband says this.
What do you/did you love the most about your job?
Working with my mom Crystal Fricker and my brother, Austin Fricker. Being able to bring my creative ideas to the marketing department. The challenges, excitement and rewards of communicating internally and externally on behalf of Pure Seed.
What experiences and past roles have led you to where you are today?
I was a professional track athlete for four years after college, racing in the 2016 Olympic Trials and placing 4th in the 2016 USA Indoor Championships. During that time, I worked part time at Pure Seed helping with marketing. If I had not chosen to pursue a running career, I would have graduated college and went into teaching, never realizing my passion for the seed industry.
Fun Questions Describe what a perfect day outside of work would look like for you?
Skiing at Mt Bachelor with my Husband.
What would be the theme song of your life right now?
Buy Dirt, Jordan Davis
We just built a house on farmland that we purchased from the family farm and are starting a family.
Who is someone who’s made a big impact on your life? Why?
My mom, Crystal. I would not be in this career if it weren’t for her. She is the CEO of Pure Seed and took over the company after her father retired. She faced so many hurdles being a female scientist, farmer and businesswoman/mom throughout her career, and I have the utmost respect for her. I hope to follow in her steps alongside my brother.