Iowa Corn Growers Association Announces 2014 Friend of Iowa Corn Award
The Iowa Corn Growers Association (ICGA) has named two recipients for the 2014 Friend of Iowa Corn Award. The Friend of Iowa Corn Award is an annual award given to individuals that show exemplary effort on Iowa Corn Growers Association policy issues. Recipients include State Representative Bobby Kaufmann and National Corn Growers Association staff Sam Willett. Award winners were selected based on their support of ICGA's highest priorities, their accessibility and working relationships with ICGA, their effectiveness as a leader on important issues to the ICGA and overall support of ICGA policy. The awards will be presented at the ICGA Annual Meeting on Saturday, August 23rd in Des Moines.
"We are proud to recognize these outstanding individuals for their efforts to help with the policy goals set by farmers in Iowa," said Roger Zylstra, a farmer from Lynnville and the current President of the Iowa Corn Growers Association. "We realize that we need many 'friends' in the political arena, not only in Washington D.C., but also in Iowa. These individuals have gone above and beyond on behalf of the corn industry as a whole."
Bobby Kaufmann, a farmer and Iowa House of Representatives member, was selected due to his leadership in passage of ICGA's priority bill regarding the Iowa Corn Checkoff. Kaufmann has an understanding and affinity with many Iowa Corn policy positions, and has earned a reputation as a problem-solver, approaching issues in a pragmatic fashion. As an advocate of the Iowa Corn Checkoff Bill, he helped arrange local meetings in the area with farmers who had checkoff questions, worked to eliminate concerning provisions in the bill and as Floor Manager, moved the bill forward to its ultimate passage. Representative Kaufmann is the first legislator to ever receive the Friend of Iowa Corn Award.
Sam Willett, who is the Director of Public Policy for the National Corn Growers Association, was selected for his instrumental role in helping the ICGA implement its highest federal priority this year in the Farm Bill. Willet has led the charge on crop insurance and a market oriented risk management commodity program and has built outstanding relationships with legislators as a trusted resource on Capitol Hill.
The Friend of Iowa Corn Award is an annual award given to individuals that show exemplary effort on Iowa Corn Growers Association policy issues. Past award recipients include, Brenna Findley, Dean Lemke, and Joe Shultz. The Friend of Iowa Corn Awards are presented during the Iowa Corn Annual Meeting each August.