At its recent 106th annual convention, Gary Urlacher, Grain Division Manager at United Quality Cooperative in Parshall was re-elected President of the North Dakota Grain Dealers Association. Jeff Kittell, Grain Merchandiser at Border Ag & Energy, Russell, ND was re-elected First Vice President. Mark Hovland, General Manager at Fessenden Cooperative Association, Fessenden, ND was re-elected Second Vice President. Previously appointed to the Board to fill one year on a vacated seat, Scott Althoff, Manager at Alton Grain Terminal, LLC, Hillsboro, ND was newly elected to the nine-man Board. Steve Hepper, Grain Merchandiser, Hubbard Feeds, Bismarck, ND and Joe Peterson, Operations Manager, CHS-SunPrairie, Bowbells, ND were re-elected to the Board.
Program topics at the convention included:
- Market Outlook – Eugene Graner, Heartland Investor Services
- What Does the Future Hold for Cooperatives–Dr. Frayne Olson-Director, Quentin Burdick Center for Coops
- Seed Rules Every Producer and Dealer Should Know–Jason Goltz-Manager Regulatory Program, ND State Seed Department
- Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Section 199A Discussion–Tom Brusegaard-Regional Director, Senator John Hoeven’s Office
The convention included a trade show of 82 firms that provide products and services to the grain elevator industry. Registration for the meeting was over 700 people. The next convention will be held in Fargo, ND on January 20-22, 2019.
The 106 year-old association offers safety inspection and employee training to its members. It operates a self-funded health insurance trust for about 1000 grain elevator employees plus 1500 dependents. Its Educational Foundation has provided scholarships and grants to agriculture-related curriculums at ND colleges and universities for 37 years. The association publishes an annual directory, a monthly magazine and other communications as needed. For decades it has operated an insurance agency writing primarily warehouse bonds on ND grain elevators.
The Association is governed by a nine-man Board of elevator managers from around the state. Current Association officers, directors, and staff are:
Gary Urlacher, Parshall, President
Jeff Kittell, Russell, 1st Vice President
Mark Hovland, Fessenden, 2nd Vice President
Steve Hepper, Bismarck, Director
Joe Peterson, Bowbells, Director
David Ramsey, Edinburg, Director
Jeremy Burkhart, Minot, Director
Alex Richard, Casselton, Director
Scott Althoff, Hillsboro, Director
Stu Letcher, Fargo, Executive Vice President
Cheryal Welle, Fargo, Executive Assistant
Dave Nelson, Halstad, MN, Safety & Health Director
Hal Grieve, Buffalo, Sr. Safety Specialist
Sue Benson, Fargo, Office Assistant