Meet Your Board | A tribute to retiring board members
Oct 20, 2022
At the upcoming Central Valley Ag (CVA) Annual Meeting, Dave Beckman of Elgin, Neb. and Randy Johnson of Stromsburg, Neb. will be retiring from the CVA Board of Directors.
“Dave and Randy have given us many years of outstanding leadership and we will miss their inspiration and dedication to the cooperative,” said Carl Dickinson, president/CEO of CVA. “Thank you for your constant outreach and advocacy.”
They have served through a recession, a booming economy, agricultural industry advances and a global pandemic. Under their guidance, CVA was able to achieve record-breaking equity distribution to its member-owners, expansion of assets to better serve producers and continued foundational growth through mergers and acquisitions all while embracing the cooperative spirit to deliver value to its members.
Dickinson said, “We are indebted to Dave and Randy for being part of the cooperative’s ability to achieve that mission.”
As Dave and Randy prepare for their last board meeting in October, CVA bids them farewell and shares their reflection on their time serving our members and cooperative.
Dave Beckman | Region 1
For the past 30 years, Dave has represented cooperative members. Dave began his service on CVA’s predecessor cooperative boards in 1992 when he was elected to Farmers Co-op Exchange. His passion for the co-op kept him an active member on the board, eventually taking the chairman position in the mid-90s. Throughout various mergers and acquisitions, Dave held his position as chairman from 1999 until December 2021.
Throughout his time on the board, there’s always been one goal – to focus on the owners. “We have the fiduciary responsibility to our owners to ensure that the coop serves producers’ needs,” said Dave. “It’s very simple – how do we best serve that owner?”
With that focus in mind, CVA has seen growth in its products and services as well as in its membership base. “Co-ops have become larger and that’s just a reflection of what’s gone on, on the farm,” said Dave. “Farms are getting larger, and needs are changing. To be relevant, the cooperative needs to meet those demands and look to the future.”
Growth also allows opportunities for its employees. “Growth allows for the advancement of our employees if they so choose, and they can have a good job in a small community because of the co-op system,” Dave said.
As Dave reflects on some of his fondest memories of serving on the board, he shares that the three-way merger which united Central Farmers, Agland Co-op and Tri-Valley Co-op in 2003 comes to mind. “A two-way merger is tough, but a three-way is more challenging and that merger spring boarded CVA into what I feel it is today,” said Dave. “It positioned us well for the future.”
Dave said, “Serving as a director has also given me the privilege to work with and meet great board members, management and employees through the years.”
Randy Johnson | Region 5
Randy was elected to the cooperative board in 2012 and has represented members from Region 3 for the past ten years.
“One of the main reasons I wanted to run for the board was to be part of the decision-making process for the cooperative,” said Randy. “As a patron, many don’t realize the time and work that board members put in to educate themselves to help make some of the tough decisions on issues that arise in our cooperative. Once that information is discussed, decisions can be made that hopefully positively impacts our producers.”
There are a multitude of opportunities for people to get information, to be involved, to take the next step. Those opportunities include attending a customer roundtable, serving on the advisory committee or as an associate board member, visiting directly with leadership and many more ways to be informed.
Randy reflects on his fondest memories as being able to serve alongside his neighbors and others that he wouldn’t have had the opportunity to meet otherwise. “The camaraderie that we have as a board is really good,” said Randy. “Getting to know people from Iowa, throughout Nebraska and Kansas, and to get to understand their operation has been some of my good memories on the board.”
CVA Board of Directors
The Central Valley Ag Board of Directors is made up of local, agricultural leaders, who are recognized for their industry expertise, as well as economic and community development skills. The board currently has 21 directors and two associate directors. These individuals are located in communities throughout the CVA territory.
To learn more about CVA’s Board of Directors, visit https://www.cvacoop.com/about