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Movers and shakers in ag organizations for 2023

Three farmers make an impact on national soy, while the Missouri Farm Bureau elects a new YF&R chair.

Mindy Ward

January 11, 2023

3 Min Read
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LEAD THE WAY: Missouri farmers continue to lead the way when it comes to serving the ag industry, whether at the local, state or national levels. They are sought after as leaders of commodity and farm organizations, making decisions that will affect future generations.BrianAJackson/Getty Images

2023 will be a busy year for a few farmers as they represent Missouri on state and national agriculture boards.

Three farmers are leading the direction of the nation’s soybean growers and the industry, while one young farmer steps up on the state level to chair the Missouri Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers committee.

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Meagan Kaiser. The Bowling Green native was elected as chair of the United Soybean Board. Kaiser is no stranger to serving the national soybean checkoff. She worked as Strategic Plan Task Force chair and oversaw a nearly 20-member committee. This group created the strategic plan that prioritizes sustainable soy solutions for global and domestic customers, while ensuring value and profitability for U.S. soybean farmers.

Kaiser previously served as vice chair of USB, leading the value alignment committee, in addition to treasurer and various other appointments within the organization.

“Meagan is a true visionary and leader in our industry,” Gary Wheeler, Missouri Soybeans CEO and executive director, said in a news release. “Meagan has made an excellent spokesperson for Missouri agriculture and the soybean sector. I am proud to see her selected by her peers as chair for USB, and I know she will serve her fellow farmers well.”

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Ronnie Russell. The American Soybean Association elected Russell as an at-large member to its executive committee. The Ray County farmer served as Missouri Soybean Association president from 2020-22. In this role, he was part of the ASA executive committee. This appointment continues his work on behalf of soybean farmers across the country.

“It’s an honor to be elected to the executive committee and serve the soybean producers of the 30 states the American Soybean Association represents,” Russell says. “I look forward to advocating in their best interest, especially in the development of the upcoming 2023 Farm Bill.”

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Tim Gottman. A soybean and corn farmer from Monroe City, Gottman serves as vice chairman of the soy transportation committee. Gottman previously served as the STC secretary-treasurer. Started in 2007, the STC is comprised of 13 state soybean boards, the American Soybean Association and the United Soybean Board. The goal of the organization is to position the soybean industry to benefit from a transportation system that delivers cost-effective, reliable and competitive services.

“Farmers understand more and more how transportation impacts their bottom line,” Gottman says. “Whether it’s roads and bridges, freight railroads, inland waterways, or ports, the STC continues to be a leader in promoting a transportation infrastructure that helps farmers be successful.”

State representation

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Andrew Boerding. The sixth-generation farmer from St. Charles is the new chair of the Missouri Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers committee. Boerding works in partnership with his father, Jim, and cousin Donnie Boerding.

Together, they raise corn and soybeans and Belgian Blue cattle on land between both the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. Boerding is somewhat of a legacy in YF&R as his dad chaired the committee 20 years ago. His mother, Dawn, served on both the YF&R and promotion and education committees.

Five years ago, Boerding took part in the CornRoots Leadership Academy sponsored by the Missouri Corn Growers and Missouri Corn Merchandising Council. There, he lobbied for agriculture in Jefferson City and Washington, D.C. He is also a member of the Missouri Corn Growers Association.

About the Author(s)

Mindy Ward

Editor, Missouri Ruralist

Mindy resides on a small farm just outside of Holstein, Mo, about 80 miles southwest of St. Louis.

After graduating from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural journalism, she worked briefly at a public relations firm in Kansas City. Her husband’s career led the couple north to Minnesota.

There, she reported on large-scale production of corn, soybeans, sugar beets, and dairy, as well as, biofuels for The Land. After 10 years, the couple returned to Missouri and she began covering agriculture in the Show-Me State.

“In all my 15 years of writing about agriculture, I have found some of the most progressive thinkers are farmers,” she says. “They are constantly searching for ways to do more with less, improve their land and leave their legacy to the next generation.”

Mindy and her husband, Stacy, together with their daughters, Elisa and Cassidy, operate Showtime Farms in southern Warren County. The family spends a great deal of time caring for and showing Dorset, Oxford and crossbred sheep.

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