Change is coming in 2021 for two state agriculture organizations as leaders announced retirements.
Missouri Farm Bureau President Blake Hurst announced in July that he will not seek reelection at the conclusion of his term. Hurst became the 14th president of the Missouri Farm Bureau when he was elected in December 2010. But his involvement in Farm Bureau started well before as a young farmer.
Hurst (left), who is part of a family farm and greenhouse operation near Tarkio, served on the Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee. He became a district board member, and then served seven years as the organization's vice president.
Over the years, Hurst has championed Missouri agriculture at the local, state and national levels. He’s been a voice for farmers and ranchers in news outlets, including print and TV, sharing his insight with consumers.
Missouri Farm Bureau will select its next president at its annual meeting in early December.
After more than 30 years of service, Missouri Corn Merchandising Council and Missouri Corn Growers Association CEO Gary Marshall announced his retirement, effective in April, in September.
Marshall said plans have been in place for several years for the transition; however, “this was not an easy choice to make.”
Marshall (below) started his career with Missouri Corn in 1986 and accepted the organizations' executive director/CEO position in 1988.
“There is no better advocate for agriculture than Gary Marshall,” MCGA President Mike Moreland said in a news release. “He's an advocate for corn growers. He's an advocate for the ethanol industry, for the livestock industry. He’s a respected leader across the U.S. and has helped grow this organization from humble beginnings to a leading commodity association. We sincerely thank Gary for dedicating his career to corn growers and appreciate the strong foundation he has built for our industry.”
The board of directors has started the transition process by retaining Hedlin Ag Enterprises, an executive search firm in Ankeny, Iowa, to assist in the search for the next Missouri Corn CEO.
The Missouri Corn Growers contributed to this article.