Raben Elected U.S. Grains Council Chairman During Virtual Summer Meeting

Lindsay Mitchell

Jul 28, 2020  |  Today's News |  ICMB |  Exports

Raben Elected U.S. Grains Council Chairman During Virtual Summer Meeting


The delegates of the U.S. Grains Council (USGC) elected Jim Raben, a farmer from Ridgway, IL representing the Illinois Corn Marketing Board (ICMB), as chairman of its Board of Directors at its 60th Annual Board of Delegates Meeting, held virtually on Tuesday.


Additionally, Don Duvall, a farmer from Carmi, IL who recently termed off of the ICMB, will begin as an At Large Director on the USGC Board of Directors.  Both Duvall and Raben have served the ICMB as Chairman during their tenure.


“It’s always been my way to cultivate relationships because together we are stronger, our collective voices are heard more loudly, and we can work together to achieve our common goals,” Raben said in his incoming remarks.


“The Council works around the clock and around the globe to find and expand new pockets of demand for the products we offer. That’s why I’ve chosen for my theme Building Relationships, Building Trade.”


Raben has been working on his family farm since 1973, more recently with help from his two sons. He spent nine years on the Illinois Corn Marketing Board before joining the Council’s board in 2015 as an at-large member. Raben has also previously served as the Board liaison for various USGC Advisory Teams (A-Teams).


The delegates elected as secretary-treasurer Joshua Miller of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council. In addition to Duvall, Duane Aistrope, Iowa Corn Promotion Board; and Verity Ulibarri, United Sorghum Checkoff Program, were elected as at-large directors.


The full USGC Board of Directors is now as follows:

  • Jim Raben, Illinois Corn Marketing Board - Chairman
  • Chad Willis, Minnesota Corn Research and Promotion Council - Vice Chairman
  • Joshua Miller, Indiana Corn Marketing Council - Secretary/Treasurer
  • Duane Aistrope, Iowa Corn Promotion Board - At-Large Director
  • Brent Boydston, Bayer Crop Science - At-Large Director
  • Don Duvall, Illinois Corn Marketing Board - At-Large Director
  • Greg Hibner, J.D. Heiskell Hawkeye Gold - Agribusiness Sector Director
  • Wayne Humphreys, Iowa Corn Promotion Board - Corn Sector Director
  • Jim Massey, United Sorghum Checkoff Program - Sorghum Sector Director
  • Tadd Nicholson, Ohio Corn Marketing Program, State Checkoff Sector Director
  • Rick Schwarck, Absolute Energy - Agribusiness-Ethanol and Co-Products Sector Director
  • Mark Seastrand, North Dakota Barley Council - Barley Sector Director
  • Verity Ulibarri, United Sorghum Checkoff Program - At-Large Director
  • Ryan LeGrand, U.S. Grains Council - President and CEO


Outgoing Chairman Armstrong said in remarks to the delegates that the Council is fortunate to have many qualified individuals passionate about the agricultural industry in leadership positions at the Council.


“Our new chairman, the Board of Directors and the Board of Delegates provide excellent insight into the challenges and opportunities in the international trade arena,” Armstrong said.


The Council’s meeting continues Wednesday with Advisory Team meetings in the morning and a closing general session in the afternoon, featuring presentations by U.S.-China Business Council President Ambassador Craig Allen and former Assistant Trade Representative Sharon Bomer Lauritsen.


More from the meeting is available on social media, using the hashtag #grains20.


The U.S. Grains Council develops export markets for U.S. barley, corn, sorghum and related products including distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) and ethanol. With full-time presence in 28 locations, the Council operates programs in more than 50 countries and the European Union. The Council believes exports are vital to global economic development and to U.S. agriculture’s profitability. Detailed information about the Council and its programs is online at www.grains.org.