The National Corn Growers Association has announced its leading grower recruiters for 2006. The efforts by these recruiters are keeping NCGA membership levels high at a time when other agricultural organizations are declining.

During 2006, six recruiters were responsible for more than 1,750 memberships.

They included: Richard Harer, Ohio, 590 recruits (1,828 points); Darrin Ihnen, South Dakota, 332 recruits (1,473 points); Dale Tolifson, Minnesota, 275 recruits (396 points); William Creed, Missouri, 262 recruits (531 points); Douglas Toreen, Minnesota, 167 recruits (766 points); and Denice Dirks, Minnesota,128 recruits (241 points).

Other "top 10" recruiters include Earl Brandt, Iowa, 89 members (531 points); Robert Nelson, 68 members (265 points); Gayle Bergstrom, Minnesota, 53 members (258 points); and Gerald Mulder, Minnesota, 50 members (254 points).

NCGA's membership program is sponsored by the seed brands of Syngenta - Garst(R) , Golden Harvest(R) and NK(R) Brand - and Syngenta Agrisure(TM) traits.

NCGA membership remains strong because growers recognize the organization's influence with policymakers, notes Don Elsbernd, vice chairman of the NCGA Grower Service Action Team. "Policy plays an important part in our success

Growers are benefiting from the NCGA's efforts in many visible areas:

  • Leadership in developing a new farm policy
  • Continued increases in ethanol use and a growth in the market of corn for ethanol
  • Progress in research in such areas of the corn genotype mapping program, and development of corn-based products
  • Leadership in trade issues, including completion of trade agreements with several nations
  • Providing growers with important information and programs on biotechnology topics like "Insect Resistance Management" and "Know Before You Grow."

  • Elsbernd also credits NCGA's network of grower-recruiters for their personal efforts.

    "Particularly in smaller states, membership efforts are doing well," he says In all, NCGA represents members in 48 states plus Canada. A total of 15 states showed net membership gains as of Dec. 31.

    NCGA is conducting its most aggressive membership drive ever during 2007. Growers, recruiters and state affiliate recruiters each have the opportunity to win one year's use of an E-85 flexible fuel vehicle (FFV) along with other incentives.

    Growers who sign up for a three-year membership in NCGA will be eligible to win one year's use of an E-85 flexible fuel vehicle (FFV). Top-recruiting grower members and the 26 affiliated state corn associations also will be eligible for FFV drawings.

    During 2007 state organizations will be eligible to earn a $1,000 grant from NCGA for membership or recruiting functions. State associations must submit a detailed membership plan to NCGA by March 1. State organizations that meet growth targets will be eligible for cash incentives and qualify for entry into a drawing for the use of an E-85 FFV for one year.

    Top individual NCGA recruiters are eligible to be voted into the Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame recruiter who posts the highest cumulative points during 2007 also receives a cash award and recognition at the 2008 Commodity Classic. Top individual recruiters will be entered in a drawing for one year's use of an E-85 FFV vehicle.

    NCGA provides recruiters with a number of tools, including a membership symposium (Feb. 7-9 in Memphis, Tenn.), recruiter library, and the monthly, electronic, Membership Matters newsletter.

    SOURCE: NCGA news release.