Top leaders in the agricultural industry will converge together on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2008 for the South Dakota Corn Growers Association’s (SDCGA) 22nd Annual Meeting at the Sioux Falls Ramkota Hotel. Acting U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Chuck Conner will deliver the keynote address at the event which has grown into one of the largest one-day agricultural events in South Dakota.
More than 1,200 producers, legislators and industry partners will participate throughout the day in educational opportunities and an evening filled with fine dining and entertainment. An illustrious line up of speakers will provide opportunities for producers to learn from leading experts on the topics of farm family relationships, industry outlooks, the emerging carbon industry and national ag policy.
Mark Pearson of “Market to Market” will kick off the day’s events at 9 a.m. with his presentation “Where are we headed in agriculture?” His market outlook will be followed by Laura Sands, who will preview the burgeoning world of carbon markets at 10:45 a.m. as she explains, “This is not your father’s carbon market.” Then participants will spend the afternoon laughing and learning with Elaine Froese as she helps producers “Discuss the Undiscussabull” beginning at 1:15 p.m.
The top ag officials in both South Dakota and the United States will serve as keynote speakers at the SDCGA event. At noon, S.D. Secretary of Agriculture Bill Even will be featured during the noon luncheon program.
Then that evening, at the SDCGA’s banquet themed “CornStock ’08” the SDCGA will bring in the nation’s lead authority on agriculture and the farm bill. On the heels of a historical energy bill being signed into law and the farm bill continuing to make progress through Congress, the SDCGA is proud to headline U.S. Sec. of Agriculture Chuck Conner at their evening banquet.
Conner was sworn in as Deputy Secretary of Agriculture in May of 2005; he was named to the Acting Secretary of Agriculture position earlier this year. Since coming to the Department, Conner has worked tirelessly to develop and promote the Administration’s farm policy.
“The farm bill is a vital component of agriculture and how the next farm bill is drafted will impact every South Dakota producer. With Conner’s keen insight into this industry and the farm bill, we are proud to showcase his knowledge and vision for the future at the SDCGA Annual Meeting,” said Reid Jensen, president of the SDCGA.
Following Conner’s speech and a presentation by each of South Dakota’s Congressional delegation including Sen. Tim Johnson, Sen. John Thune and Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, the audience is in for a special entertainment treat when the legendary Gary Lewis and the Playboys take center stage to thrill the crowd with their great hits of the ’60s including “This Diamond Ring”, “Count me In” and more!
“The SDCGA 22nd Annual Meeting is designed to celebrate the successes of the South Dakota corn industry while recognizing the leaders who have made a difference in the SDCGA over the past years,” said Jensen.
For a full agenda of the day’s events, go to www.sdcorn.org. Tickets for the Annual Meeting banquet are $50 for members of the SDCGA or $125 for non-members. The day-long educational seminars are at no cost and open to the public; the lunch program is $10 per person. Register by calling the SDCGA at 605-334-0100.