Corn Growers’ Annual Meeting Is Saturday

South Dakota Corn University Logo

The 33rd annual meeting of the South Dakota Corn Growers Association will feature a variety of educational presentations during the day, capped by an evening banquet showcasing a silent auction, music and a keynote address by Howard Vincent, national president and CEO of Pheasants Forever.

The event will kick off at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Sioux Falls Convention Center. Delaney Howell, host of Market to Market and co-host of the Ag News Daily podcast, will serve as master of ceremonies for the daytime presentations. Well-respected experts will cover a variety of issues important to farmers.

“This lineup of speakers is as exceptional as you’re going to find at any event,” SDCGA President Troy Knecht said. “They’re going to provide insight and information that will benefit us all as we plan for 2019. You really don’t want to miss out on this opportunity.”

In the day’s first session, Ed Duggan of Top Third Marketing and Tommy Grisafi of Advance Trading will present their grain-marketing perspectives. During lunch, attendees will hear from John Killefer, dean of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences at South Dakota State University.

Eric Snodgrass, co-founder of Global Weather and Climate Logistics ,will open the afternoon session with a weather marketing presentation. That will be followed by a panel discussion on trade, policy and transportation issues featuring Floyd Gaibler of the U.S. Grains Council, Greg Guthrie of BNSF Railway and Jason Hofer of The Gavilon Group.

Howell will wrap up the day’s presentation with “The Last Word.”

The evening banquet will begin at 5:30 with a social gathering. Jim Woster, a well-known South Dakota agriculture personality, will serve as master of ceremonies for the banquet. Evening activities will include a silent auction, awards presentations, Vincent’s speech and music by the popular Johnny Holm Band. There will also be a drawing to determine the winner of a John Deere Gator raffle.

Profiles of the lunch and evening speakers:

John Killefer

John Killefer’s official title is South Dakota Corn Utilization Council endowed dean of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (CAFES) at South Dakota State University.

He stepped into that role last spring, hired away from Oregon State University after a national search. As dean, he oversees about 600 faculty and staff members throughout the college, including SDSU Extension and experiment stations. The college, which offers 20 bachelor’s degrees and one associate’s degree, has about 2,000 undergraduate students and 250 graduate students.

Killefer has a wide range of experience. At Oregon State, he was a professor and head of animal and rangeland sciences. He also completed construction on three facilities and numerous renovations to other facilities.

He established approximately $3.5 million in endowments to support teaching and research, in addition to support for livestock farms and educational opportunities in cattle production. An accomplished researcher, Killefer’s programs have secured more than $6.3 million from both federal and industry sources.

Howard Vincent

Howard Vincent has been involved with Pheasants Forever as either a volunteer or employee since shortly after the organization’s inception in 1982. He became the first director of finance in 1987 and over the years also served as senior vice president and chief financial officer.

Pheasants Forever’s National Board of Directors appointed him CEO in January 2000, only the second person to hold that position. He is also actively involved with several other wildlife and hunting groups. He serves on the boards of directors for the Wildlife Management Institute, the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership and the Council to Advance Hunting and the Shooting Sports. He is also a member of the Wildlife and Hunting Heritage Conservation Council.

A native of Duluth, Minn., and a graduate of the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Vincent and his wife, Wendy, live in White Bear Lake, Minn.

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