At the recent Board of Delegates meeting, Illinois corn farmer Ron Gray was elected to serve as Secretary to the U.S. Grains Council, a role that will move Gray through leadership positions, culminating as Chairman.
Gray farms in Claremont, IL, and is fulfilling his final term on the Illinois Corn Marketing Board this year.
In this candidate profile, Gray described his interest in serving as an officer of the USGC as:
“I want to serve as an officer of the U.S. Grains Council so that I may participate in the development of export markets. I believe that the experiences I have had during my tenure with the Council piqued my natural interest in market development and the role trade policy plays in markets.
I am encouraged by the changes I see in the new and effective ways the Council is providing information to members and the general refocusing of resources to potential large markets. Markets will grow, trade will increase, and the U.S. Grains Council is positioning to affect change and make a difference. I would like to contribute to that difference.”
The U.S. Grains Council is a private, non-profit corporation that seeks to develop export markets for corn, barley, and grain sorghum. The Council believes exports are vital to global economic development and to U.S. agriculture’s profitability. It uses 10 international offices and programs in more than 50 countries to accomplish these goals.
As an officer of the Council, Gray will have input into the development of export markets around the world and will help guide the organization to quickly and efficiently increase export market opportunities for Illinois corn farmers. Illinois exports more than half of its corn crop annually.
The Illinois Corn Marketing Board is a major funder of the U.S. Grains Council, investing approximately $850,000 in checkoff funds each year.