JUNE 2012


(Posted Fri. Jun 22nd, 2012)

Don ElsberndSecond in a series profiling candidates for the 2013 Corn Board. 




June 22: A consensus builder who values communication, Don Elsbernd has gained a nuanced understanding of the different regional issues affecting farmers across the country.  Now, he wishes to use this perspective to serve corn farmers as a member of the 2013 National Corn Growers Association Corn Board.


“I think that at NCGA we have been on an up trending line, and I would like to see that continue,” said Elsbernd.  “There is still plenty of room for improvement though.  I think that we have lofty goals, and I would like to see us continue working towards them.  At the same time, we need to increase the level of member participation and, then, leverage that engagement to help accomplish the goals of the organization.”


Elsbernd brings with him a substantial resume of service at both the state and national levels.  A former president of the Iowa Corn Growers Association, he served on their board of directors for eight years and now serves on the Iowa Corn Promotion Board.  Nationally, Elsbernd is the current president and chairman of the Growers National Coop’s board of directors and he sits on NCGA’s Public Policy Action Team.  Previously, he served on NCGA’s Growers Services Action Team and on the Communications Committee for Corn Vision 2012.


“My experiences have helped me develop skills and abilities that will serve me very well when I come to serve on the National Corn Growers Association’s board,” said Elsbernd.  “I have developed communications skills and the ability to facilitate meetings.  As president of the Iowa Corn Growers, I found that one of your concerns is getting people on the bus and, once they are on, making sure that they are in the right seats.  I have had a variety of experiences and challenges, and each one has taught me a valuable lesson about leadership.”


Elsbernd and his wife, Trish, farm no-till corn and soybeans in northeast Iowa. Together, they have two daughters and a son who, while he currently works for Ag Leader, plans to come back to take over the family farm in the future.


The NCGA Corn Board election takes place at the July 18 Corn Congress session in Washington. 


To listen to the audio interview click here.