Leadership At Its Best

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 Leadership At Its Best Class Begins in Minneapolis
The ASA Leadership At Its Best Class poses for a photo with Syngenta and ASA staff at the Syngenta Seedcare Facility in Stanton, Minn.

The ASA Leadership At Its Best Class poses for a photo with Syngenta and ASA staff at the Syngenta Seedcare Facility in Stanton, Minn.

Soybean farmer-leaders from 15 states met in August in Minneapolis, Minn., for Part I of the 2015-2016 American Soybean Association (ASA) Leadership At Its Best program, sponsored by Syngenta. This valuable program recognizes up and coming soybean farmer-leaders and provides them with extensive training to further develop their leadership skills and provide additional education on communication styles, strategic planning, forecasting, media training and business etiquette.

ASA appreciates the continued support provided by Syngenta that makes this important leadership development program possible.

Leadership At Its Best Program participants are nominated by their state soybean association and serve in a leadership role within their states. This year’s class participants include: Adam Cloninger, Keo, AR; Cory Atkins, Seaford, DE; Elaine Gillis, Dunkirk, IN; Bill Shipley, Nodaway, IA; Caleb Ragland, Magnolia, KY; Brian McKenzie, Cassopolis, MI; Christopher Hill, Brewster, MN; Robert Alpers, Prairie Home, MO; Shane Grieving, Chapman, NE; Joe Ericson, Wimbledon, ND; Kerrick Wilson, Sommerville, OH; Cliff Barron, Johnsonville, SC; John Krutzfeldt, Wolsey, SD; Hunter Grills, Newbern, TN and Brad Kremer, Pittsville, WI. The leaders will begin the second phase of their training next March, in conjunction with the ASA Board Meeting in Washington, D.C.

Please contact Michelle Hummel at mhummel@soy.org if you have any questions regarding the program.  (Applicaton Period Now Closed) 

About Leadership at Its Best

Through the years, the American Soybean Association (ASA) has developed and maintained a base of farmer leaders that effectively addresses national policy issues impacting soybean farming. Through ongoing training, a corps of state and national ASA leaders has evolved into an effective voice in Washington, D.C. in the interest of soybeans and U.S. agriculture.

The ASA leadership development program known as ASA/Syngenta Leadership At Its Best is the distinguished and specialized training curriculum that develops a key group of state and national leaders who can effectively address Congress and the media on policy issues impacting soybean farmers.

The ongoing benefits of leadership development are evidenced as state leaders utilize their training and their experiences to make a difference in American agriculture, while advancing into leadership positions on the national level. Celebrating its 22nd year, over 400 ASA members have already graduated from this program.

“This program is a great way to sharpen your communications skills, focus your commitment to agriculture, and network with influential farmers from across the nation,” said 2012 graduate Tom Price. “The education I received not only helped me personally, but has given me some tools to give back something to a way of life that has provided me so much.”

“Syngenta has the opportunity through this program to strengthen the skills of these future leaders to become strong advocates for ASA and agriculture,” said Syngenta Head, External Relations, Rex Martin.

Leadership at Its Best 2014-15

LAIB15 Grads

Farmers from 11 states graduated from the 2014-15 ASA Leadership At Its Best program in early March 2015, in Washington, D.C. The Leadership At Its Best program is sponsored by Syngenta and develops leadership, communication and advocacy skills in farmers who have already shown potential to be strong leaders through the positions they hold on their state soybean association boards. This select group of farmer-leaders participated in the first part of the Leadership At Its Best training this past summer in Greensboro, N.C. In March, their training focused primarily on how to advocate for issues important to soybean farmers in Washington. The class participants concluded their visit to the Capitol with a day of Hill visits with their state associations.

ASA appreciates Syngenta’s continued support of this valuable educational opportunity and congratulates this year’s Leadership At Its Best Class on successful completion of the program. Graduates of this class included Mike Bertram (WI), Dan Brandt (MN), Matthew Chapman (IN), Alex Forsbach (TN), Wayne Fredericks (IA), Adam Graham (OH), David Hartz (ND), AJ Hood (AR), Jonathan Miller (KY), Ronnie Russell (MO) and Matt Stutzman (MI).