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Cotton industry organizations announce new officers

In addition to the new officers elected to lead the National Cotton Council for 2016, other affiliated cotton industry organizations also announced new leadership at the NCC annual meeting Feb. 5-7 in Dallas, Texas.

The American Cotton Producers, Cotton Council International and the National Cotton Ginners Association all announced new slates at the annual meeting.


Michael Tate of Huntsville, Ala., was elected chairman of the American Cotton Producers (ACP) of the National Cotton Council (NCC) for 2016. Currently a NCC director, the north Alabama cotton producer has served on and chaired various ACP and NCC committees and task forces.

Elected ACP vice chairmen were: John Lindamood, Tiptonville, Tenn.; and Cannon Michael, Los Banos, California. Re-elected vice chairman was Doyle Schniers, San Angelo, Texas.

Elected as NCC producer directors were Kendall Wannamaker, St. Matthews, SC, representing the Southeast region; Nathan Reed, Marianna, Ark., representing the Mid-South; and Dan Thelander, Maricopa, Ariz., representing the Far West.

Re-elected as a producer director was Shawn Holladay, Lubbock, Texas, representing the Southwest. Tate will serve as at-large director.

Serving as ACP state producer chairmen in 2016: Alabama – Nick McMichen, Centre, and Ricky Wiggins, Andalusia; Arizona – Paul Ollerton and Gregory Wuertz, both from Casa Grande; Arkansas – Terry Pollard, Greenway; California – Mark McKean, Riverdale; Florida – B. E. “Sonny” Davis, Jr., Cottondale; Georgia – Tim Crosby, Pavo, and Chad Mathis, Jr., Arlington; Kansas – Kent Goyen, Pratt; Louisiana – Jason Condrey, Lake Providence; and Benjamin Guthrie, Newellton; Mississippi – Patrick Johnson, Jr., Tunica; Missouri/Illinois – Steven Droke, Hornersville, Mo.; New Mexico – Nathan Jurva, Carlsbad; North Carolina – Andrew Burleson, New London; and Joseph Martin, II, Conway; Oklahoma – Dan Robbins, Altus; South Carolina – William Bull, Cameron; and Gill Rogers, Hartsville; Tennessee/Kentucky – Don Pearson, Jackson, Tenn.; Texas – Keith Corzine, Stamford; Craig Heinrich, Lubbock; and Toby Robertson, Corpus Christi; and Virginia – James Jones, Jr., Windsor.


Keith T. Lucas, Garner, N.C., cooperative official, will serve as president of Cotton Council International (CCI) for 2016. CCI is the NCC’s export promotions arm and carries out programs in more than 50 countries globally under the COTTON USA trademark.

“The cotton industry is operating in an uncertain environment, with international policies and the ongoing challenge from man-made fiber affecting cotton consumption,” Lucas said. “CCI’s COTTON USA promotion efforts take on even greater importance this year, as consumer demand and exports continue to be critical to maintaining U.S. cotton’s profitability. I’m excited to lead CCI as its president and support its global initiatives aimed at instilling a preference for U.S. cotton and cotton products at every point along the marketing chain.”

Lucas, who moves up from CCI first vice president, succeeds Dahlen K. Hancock, a Ropesville, Texas, producer, who becomes CCI board chairman. A South Alabama native, Lucas attended Auburn University where he earned a B.S. degree in Business Administration in 1985. He came on board with Carolinas Cotton Growers Cooperative in 2001, serving as vice president of marketing. He is responsible for all of its member-grower relations including forward contracting, spot purchases and managing the day-to-day operations of cotton services.

Lucas has been active in industry organizations including current service as chairman of the NCC’s Public Relations and International Market Development Committee and as a member of the NCC’s Quality Task Force. He is a past member of the NCC’s Joint Cotton Industry Bale Packaging Committee. He has served in multiple leadership positions with CCI and currently is a member of CCI’s Export Promotion Committee.

Other 2016 CCI officers elected include: first vice president, Eduardo L. Esteve, Jr., merchant, Dallas, Texas; second vice president, Ted Schneider, producer, Lake Providence, La.; and treasurer, Hank Reichle, cooperative, Greenwood, Mississippi. In addition, Gary Adams, Cordova, Tenn., was elected as secretary and Bruce Atherley, Washington, D.C., was elected as assistant secretary.

Elected as 2016 CCI directors were: Jarral T. Neeper, a cooperative official from Bakersfield, Calif.; Carlos C. Garcia, a cooperative official from Lubbock, Texas; Davis Warlick, a manufacturer from Charlotte, N.C.; James L. Loeb, Jr., a merchant from Montgomery, Ala.; and Richard Gaona, a producer from Roby, Texas.

Re-elected as 2016 CCI directors were: Producers – J. Lee Cromley, Brooklet, Ga.; Craig A. Heinrich, Lubbock, Texas; Richard Kelley, Burlison, Tenn.; Cannon Michael, Los Banos, Calif.; Taylor Slade, Williamston, N.C.; and Gregory C. (Greg) Wuertz, Casa Grande, Ariz.; Ginners – Thomas S. (Sid) Brough, Odem, Texas; and Kent D. Fountain, Surrency, Ga.; Merchants – E. Hope (Hopie) Brooks, III, and Steven (Steve) Dyer, both of Cordova, Tenn.; Philip R. (Phil) Bogel, II, Dallas, Texas; and Ernst D. (Ernie) Schroeder, Jr., Bakersfield, Calif.; Cooperative Official - Frederick Barrier, Greenwood, Miss.; Cottonseed Handler – James C. Massey, Harlingen, Texas; Warehouser – Vance C. Shoaf, Milan, Tenn.; and Manufacturer – Robin Perkins, Sanford, N.C.


The Memphis-based National Cotton Ginners Association (NCGA) elected its 2016 officers during its annual meeting in Dallas, Texas.

The new slate is:  president – Ron Craft, Plains, Texas; first vice president – David Blakemore, Campbell, Mo.; second vice president – Stanley Creelman, Tulare, Calif.; third vice chairman – Wes Morgan, New London, N.C.; and chairman – Levin Lynch, Bennettsville, South Carolina. Harrison Ashley of Cordova, Tenn., serves as NCGA’s executive vice president.

Craft, who moves up from NCGA first vice president, is manager of the New Tex Gin Company in Plains. He has served on and chaired numerous NCGA committees and currently chairs its Legislative Committee and its Air Quality Subcommittee. A graduate of the National Cotton Council’s (NCC) Cotton Leadership Program, Craft served as a NCC director in 2015. He also has served on multiple NCC committees, including current membership on the NCC’s Farm Program and Economic Policy and Cotton Flow committees and on its Quality Task Force.

Also announced at NCGA’s annual meeting was that Louis Colombini, manager of the Westside Farmers Coop Gins in Fresno, Calif., and an active ginner leader in that state, is the NCGA’s 2015 Horace Hayden National Cotton Ginner of the Year.

In addition, Barry Nevius who has served as a safety and loss control specialist for the Southeastern Cotton Ginners Association and headed up its safety-related activities since 1998, was named the recipient of NCGA’s 2015-2016 Charles C. Owen Distinguished Service Award.

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