CONFERENCE AGENDA


Sunday, December 2, 2018



9:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. Registration
9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Leadership Conference for State/Regional Associations Affiliated with NGFA (invitation only)
2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. NGFA Country Elevator Committee Meeting (open to all NGFA members)
4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. Trade Show Open
5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. Welcome Reception in Trade Show

Monday December 3, 2018



7:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. Registration
7:00 a.m. - 8:00 a.m. Buffet Breakfast in Trade Show
8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Opening General Session
  Welcome to St. Louis


Brian Gordon,
Chief Executive Officer, Ritzville Warehouse, Ritzville, WA; Member, NGFA Board of Directors; Chairman, NGFA Country Elevator Committee

  State of the Elevator: 2019 Grain Elevator Outlook
The grain elevator outlook will provide an analysis of the year ahead for the grain elevator industry, including the prospects for basis, carry, and transportation. Additional areas of focus will include the impact of rising interest rates on the cost of carry, increasing transportation costs across barge, rail, and truck sectors, and the effect of trade tensions on basis, carry, and transportation. Production estimates, global developments, and other factors shaping grain elevator margins will also be discussed.

Will Secor, Economist, CoBank Knowledge Exchange

  NGFA Industry Leadership Roundtable Discussion on the Direction of the Grain Industry
Current and former NGFA Executive Officers will discuss their thoughts on the direction of the U.S. grain industry. Roundtable topics will include: perspectives on the most significant changes each has seen in the last five years and what they see in their "crystal ball" for the next five; the role they see the country elevator sector playing in the future; the most important keys for building and maintaining a successful agribusiness in today's market.

Eric Wilkey, President, Arizona Grain Inc; NGFA Chairman of the Board
Dave Baudler,
Managing Director - Grain - Cargill Agricultural Supply Chain North America; NGFA First Vice Chairman
JoAnn Brouillette
, Managing Partner and President, Demeter LP; NGFA Second Vice Chairman
John Heck, Senior Vice President, Scoular; Chairman, NGFA Executive Committee
Dave Hoogmoed, Executive Vice President, Land O'Lakes; President, Purina Animal Nutrition; Past NGFA Chairman of the Board; Member, NGFA Board of DIrectors

10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. Catch Up Break
 11:00 a.m - 12:00 p.m. Building a Powerful and Effective Company Culture
Mitzi Perdue will share techniques used by the Perdue family to grow Perdue Farms (parent company of Perdue Foods and Perdue AgriBusiness) from a father and son operation to one that today employs 22,000. She also will share innovative techniques to motivate employees to go the extra mile and inspire loyalty.

Mitzi Perdue, Author, speaker, and businesswoman

12:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. Networking Lunch in Trade Show
2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. Breakout Sessions - Round 1

  Breakout A | Merchandising Amidst a Sea of Unknowns
This session will focus on the variables outside the immediate control of the merchandiser and will provide ideas on how to manage risk and stay flexible during times of unknown. 

Curt Strubhar, Commercial Merchandising Consultant and Vice Chairman, Advance Trading Inc.
Taylor Sauder,
Broker, Advance Trading Inc.

  Breakout B | Everything You've Wanted to Know About Hiring Top Talent But Didn't Know Who to Ask
This breakout session will provide you access to a diverse panel of agribusiness talent experts, ready to answer your questions about hiring at each level of the talent "supply chain." How do we encourage people to study agriculture in school and pursue ag as a career choice? How do we find highly-qualified professionals with the right practical experience to hire? How do we develop and retain our existing high-performing talent? Take note: this is a question-and-answer breakout, so come prepared with your questions.

Dave Allen, President, AGRI-SEARCH
Tucker Milholland, Agriculture Future of America (AFA) Campus Ambassador, West Texas A&M University
Tom Swearingen, Director of Talent Management,GROWMARK Inc.

  Breakout C| Digital Value Chains in Agriculture
As the flow of information through the value chain becomes increasingly valuable, capturing, transferring, and using data will be a critical evolution in the grain industry. In this session we'll explore the dynamics around this shift and the skills, processes, systems, and tools from predictive analytics to blockchain that will enable first movers to gain an edge in this new digital world.

Janette Barnard, Sales & Marketing Director, DecisionNext

3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. Catch Up Break
3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Breakout Sessions - Round 2
  Breakout A | Merchandising Amidst a Sea of Unknowns
This session will focus on the variables outside the immediate control of the merchandiser and will provide ideas on how to manage risk and stay flexible during times of unknown. 

Curt Strubhar, Commercial Merchandising Consultant and Vice Chairman, Advance Trading Inc.
Taylor Sauder, 
Broker, Advance Trading Inc.

  Breakout B | Everything You've Wanted to Know About Hiring Top Talent But Didn't Know Who to Ask
This breakout session will provide you access to a diverse panel of agribusiness talent experts, ready to answer your questions about hiring at each level of the talent "supply chain." How do we encourage people to study agriculture in school and pursue ag as a career choice? How do we find highly-qualified professionals with the right practical experience to hire? How do we develop and retain our existing high-performing talent? Take note: this is a question-and-answer breakout, so come prepared with your questions.

Dave Allen, President, AGRI-SEARCH
Tucker Milholland, Agriculture Future of America (AFA) Campus Ambassador, West Texas A&M University
Tom Swearingen, Director of Talent Management, GROWMARK Inc.

  Breakout C| Digital Value Chains in Agriculture
As the flow of information through the value chain becomes increasingly valuable, capturing, transferring, and using data will be a critical evolution in the grain industry. In this session we'll explore the dynamics around this shift and the skills, processes, systems, and tools from predictive analytics to blockchain that will enable first movers to gain an edge in this new digital world.

Janette Barnard, Sales & Marketing Director, DecisionNext

4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Networking Reception in Trade Show
9:30 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. NextGen Bier Haus Networking Reception (open to all, designed specifically as a peer networking opportunity for early- to mid-career professionals)

Tuesday December 4, 2018



7:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. Registration
7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. Buffet Breakfast
8:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. General Session Reconvenes
  Market Transformers! What the New Business Methods for Buying and Selling Grain and Farm Inputs Are All About
From inputs to marketing, business trends are emerging to bring growers closer to the manufacturers as well as the consumers. Listen as three of these transformers explain how they fit within the existing grain industry framework and what changes to that framework their business model might bring about.

Ben Allen, Head of Food & Fiber, Indigo Ag, Inc.
Dudley Stephens, Director, Crop Merchandising, Farmers Business Network
Brennan Turner, President and CEO, FarmLead

  Elevate Your Business Through the Seeds of Adversity
If you've ever experienced setbacks with your business-in or out of your control-this presentation will reveal how such challenges can become the foundation for future success and greatness. Featuring Will Knecht's brevity and heart, it reveals how his ideas influenced the day-to-day management of his own company and other organizations in a way few others can match. Surprisingly gentle, yet amazingly powerful, Knecht offers bold and transformative ideas for every person, every organization. Constant change is a way of life in the world today; being successful means simultaneously managing the present while planning for the future. This insightful presentation chronicles an inspiring story of history and tradition-and the fire that could have destroyed a business and its people, but instead became a catalyst for new thinking and new opportunities.

Will Knecht, President, Wendell August

11:00 a.m. Conference Closing Remarks