"High Stakes in Omaha" was the talk of the 2012 MACA Annual Meeting attendees. Nearly 150 people registered for the meeting and represented 40 member companies, 25 first time attendees and five non-members.
Jim Farrell, AFM, pesident/CEO of Farmers National Company kicked off the program and was followed by Chuck Conner, pesident & CEO, National Council of Farmer Cooperatives. It was a lively discussion on politics, land values, and commodity prices.
Sept. 5 members were busy with private business meetings or a personal development seminar in the morning. Some 44 golfers were on the greens in the afternoon at the Dodge Riverside Golf Club in Council Bluffs, Iowa. While nine took in the tour at Upstream Brewing Company to learn about the microbrewery process and enjoyed lunch.
Thursday morning, Ed Lopez, director of marketing for Van Eck Global, and Dr. Jay Lehr, science director of the Heartland Institute, shared their insights on the future of agriculture and caused many people to pause and reconsider how we talk about agriculture.
The Association's Industry Vision Award was presented to Jim Wissmiller, president of Tenkoz, Inc. located in Alpharetta, Ga. Wissmiller began with Tenkoz 11 years ago as vice president responsible for managing programs and performance for assigned product groups and relationship and performance with assigned basic suppliers. He was also responsible for establishing and managing the Tenkoz private label business. Prior to Tenkoz he held key management positions with Zeneca/Stauffer for more than 30 years.
The award is presented annually to an industry leader who provides exemplary vision on the issues affecting Midwestern agriculture.
The MACA Educator of the Year Award went to Dr. Christina DiFonzo, who has been the field crops entomologist at Michigan State University located in East Lansing since 1996. She teaches the introductory Entomology course at MSU, plus Pesticides in Pest Management and Insects in the Cinema.
DiFonzo has been a great asset, not just to Michigan, but Midwestern production agriculture on insect issues. She is a leader on soybean aphids and other pests. She is a strong believer in outreach, as evidenced by her e-mail news blasts, FastFonzFacts, which is widely distributed, not just in Michigan, but other states as well.
The CropLife Ambassador of the Year Award was first presented in 1993. It is designed to recognize an ambassador for their efforts in promoting the crop protection industry through presentations to students or consumers. This year's recipient is Dave Junge, president and CEO of Junge Control, which is a manufacturing business specializing agricultural blending process controls and equipment. It was founded in 1979 with his wife Mary.
Since starting in 2004, as an ambassador, he has made 17 presentations. He has reached 815 students. Dave enjoys showing the positives about agriculture to kids. He started making presentations because his son Matthew and his friends didn't know much about agriculture. Dave has also encouraged other staff to make presentations to students.
A special thanks to the honorable mentions: Sarah Miller, Successful Farming; Jim Jenkins, Syngenta Crop Protection; Greg High, Monsanto; and Roger Henderson, Oil-Dri Corporation of America for their outstanding efforts with the CropLife Ambassador Network.
MACA President Matt Wagner presented the Dean Roy Achievement Award to Jeff Hayslett, AMVAC Chemical, as the 2012 recipient. It is named in honor of one of the organization's founders for "Exceptional Service to MACA and the CropLife Industry" for contributing the most by their selfless service.
"Jeff is committed and involved as he works for the benefit of MACA and the crop protection industry," stated Wagner. "His three attributes are his interest in MACA, willingness to work together on projects with others, and desire to help whenever asked."
As a former committee chairman of the MACA Crop Production Issues committee he made sure everyone has an opportunity to provide input.
"Jeff has served on the board several times to fill out a term and also when the board had needed someone to serve as Secretary/Treasurer, Jeff stepped up and was more than willing to assist for the year. It also meant that he served on the Executive Committee - yet, Hayslett found the time necessary to make sure the minutes and finances were properly recorded," stated Wagner. "He believes in MACA and is willing to give his time."
Hayslett is the 31st person to receive the Dean Roy Achievement Award.
Jason Paris, MFA, Inc., was elected the 2012-2013 President. Elected as Vice President was Greg Reigh, BASF and Secretary/Treasurer Tom Quade, FMC. Matt Wagner, Banjo Corporation, will serve as immediate past president.
Elected to three-year board of director terms were: Phil Harms - Dow AgroSciences; Matt Ewers - Inland Empire Distribution Systems, Inc; Jeff Hayslett - AMVAC Chemical; and Wayne Jelinek - Monsanto. John Howe - Winfield Solutions was elected to complete an unexpired term, which ends in 2014.