Trade, Taxes and Technology

The ASFMRA Annual Conference is Oct. 29 to Nov. 2, 2018, in Chandler, Ariz., at the Sheraton Grand at Wild Horse Pass, which sits within the Gila River Indian Community. ( AgPro )

The ASFMRA Annual Conference is Oct. 29 to Nov. 2, 2018, in Chandler, Ariz., at the Sheraton Grand at Wild Horse Pass, which sits within the Gila River Indian Community. This beautiful resort is within minutes of Phoenix and is an authentic representation of the Gila River Indian tribes’ heritage and culture. The architecture, design, art and legends celebrate the Akimel O’otham and Pee Posh tribes in every detail on this high Sonoran Desert locale. 


Not-To-Miss Program

In addition to this unique venue, ASFMRA put together a lineup of speakers to provide insight on trade, taxes and technology as well as the next generation of ag land experts and landowners. 

Kevin Spafford, CFP, nationally recognized author of “Legacy by Design: Succession Planning for Agribusiness Owners” and senior founder of Legacy by Design, will provide his wisdom and knowledge in regard to succession planning for farmers, ranchers and agribusiness owners. Most owners want to pass their farm or agribusiness to the next generation, so succession is an ongoing and growing concern. Planning for succession is about not only money, business or family, but it is also about making good decisions and preparing for the future. Spafford will reveal and discuss roadblocks to planning; share real-life experiences; and identify keys to ensure that the plan provides owners with financial security, creates a smooth transition and minimizes tax obligations.

Mark Linné, the 2012 winner of the Valuation Visionary award and CEO of ValueScape Analytics, will be presenting a thought-provoking look at the future of appraisal. Attendees will gain insight into how valuation professionals can take advantage of artificial intelligence as the presentation will examine the potential risks and opportunities that artificial intelligence offers and provide a unique perspective on how appraisals and valuation professionals will need to evolve. 

Nathan Kauffman, vice president and Omaha branch executive for the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, will provide his perspective on why the U.S. economy is in high gear, and the ag economy is stuck in neutral. This session will explore the economic factors that are driving the U.S. farm sector’s outlook, and it will provide thoughts on the implications for farm finances and key risks for the industry to monitor in the months ahead.

Wendong Zhang, economist at Iowa State University, will provide a unique assessment of the long-term implications of the trade dispute between China and the U.S.

Sarah Beth Aubrey and Matt Rush will both be challenging attendees in terms of communicating across generations and understanding millennial expectations. Aubrey raises cattle in central Indiana, and Rush grew up on a ranch in rural New Mexico. Both are passionate about personal accountability, communicating effectively and the next generation.

Pioneer will once again host its famous Ag Tour, which will be a visit to the oldest established ranch in Arizona. During the conference, attendees will have plenty of time for networking and visiting the trade show to learn about the latest products and services from the exhibiting companies.

The conference involves so much more. Come and visit Arizona, take in the 2.5-mile replica of the Gila River that meanders through the resort, and don’t forget your swimming suit!

 Learn more and register for this year’s conference at

See you in Arizona!