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Shelly Barclay – Bodacious Bean Counter


Farming Smarter Office Manager Shelly Barclay manages the heck out of all things related to money and contracts. If you’ve had reason to deal with Shelly on that front, you know you received exactly what you needed.

Shelly brings to her role a bodacious, passionate and no holds barred dedication. She will not leave you hanging or ignore any aspect of a good working relationship with you. She is also a bulldog when it comes to negotiation and saved Farming Smarter money on many occasions.

The name of our organization attracted her to us. It made her curious about what we do and offered a way to get closer to her agricultural roots after her accounting career drew her in other directions.

Shelly Barclay on a ladder
Always climbing higher this one! Shelly heading for a photo op.

“I was at the right place at the right time,” says Shelly because she came to work with us through mutual connections at a time when Farming Smarter needed someone.

After five years, Shelly says she enjoys the teamwork and involvement in all the projects from grant application process to managing funds and contributing to final reports.

With Executive Director Ken Coles, she oversees various budgets, accounts, payroll and all contracts. She makes sure every Farming Smarter i  has a dot and its Ts get crossed. She finds this especially important for a non-profit charity because grant money must last for the lifetime of any project.

“Budgeting is super important to make sure we can continue to do what we planned from start to finish every year,” she says. Shelly’s skills and knowledge enhanced Farming Smarter project reporting to funders and stakeholders. It includes student grants that balloon the summer workforce and her payroll task.

“That’s expanded and grown in the five years I’ve been here,” Shelly points out. “It’s exciting because we get the help we need and the students we hire get experience.”

She’s intricately involved in the Smart Partner/Agronomy Smarts program that began in 2019 and enjoys coordinating with businesses that can offer subscribers benefits they can use.

“I really like reaching out to the people involved in different aspects of those programs and sharing our passion,” she says.

She says she loves the job, the people and the organization and will be with us forever. We believe her because she is an Energizer Bunny and clearly has too much fun at her work.

“I like the ag research and the innovation. There are so many intriguing things we get to learn and try like the canine clubroot project or the hail project. I can’t imagine another job being this exciting.”