Missoula attorney and legislator Kimberly Dudik traveled to Philadelphia on Monday to attend the Democratic National Convention, and to be part of a panel addressing agricultural issues.

Dudik said she was especially inspired by the speech from First Lady Michelle Obama.

"The mood was pretty exciting when I got here," Dudik said. "Especially after the speech by First Lady Michelle Obama last night. People think her speech was just great and really unifying, so hopefully, that will set the tone for the rest of the week."

Dudik said her part in the gathering was to be part of a panel discussion on economic issues.

"I was part of a panel discussion today about building America's 21st century innovation economy," she said. "This was a panel put on by the Progressive Policy Institute and the New Leaders Council. They have a policy agenda that focuses on economic innovation, especially as it deals with rural issues, like we have in Montana. I had written a paper on economic issues and they picked that because I was from Montana. I talked about preservation of agricultural lands. Montana is the fourth largest state, and we have over three million acres that are set aside for conservation and for agricultural use, that's about four times the state of Rhode Island. Nationwide, we lose about a million acres of farm land every year, so we need to take a look at how to conserve more land for farming."

As for the rest of the convention, Dudik hopes the speakers and the delegates will take what she called 'the high ground'.

"When people take the low road and deliver low blows, we just need to rise above it, and concentrate on what kind of future we're creating for our children," she said. "It's easy to get stuck in the rhetoric anymore, but we really need to focus on building a future for our children and our grandchildren. We need to find a way to come together and not allow all the fighting to rule the day."

Later on Tuesday, Hillary Clinton will officially be nominated as the Democratic nominee for President of the United States.

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