Kansas bison producer Dick Gehring was recently honored as the National Bison Association’s 2022 Member of the Year.
Awarded each year during the association’s Winter Conference, the Member of the Year is presented to a member who goes above and beyond. In the months leading up to the award, the NBA Past Presidents’ Council receives member of the year nominations from fellow NBA members and then votes on the recipient.
Gehring, who operates Black Kettle Buffalo near Moundridge, Kan., is a long-time member, current chair of the NBA Commercial Marketers Committee, and past president of the NBA. Nominees noted his commitment to the organization through service on the board of directors as well as numerous committees and his work with the Gold Trophy Show and sale. On the home front, Gehring has been involved with the Kansas Buffalo Association for many years and spearheads the group’s annual auction each December. He also does consulting and is always available to answer questions and lend his support to producers both new and established. One nominee noted his strong work ethic and his mentorship, noting they could only hope to have Gehring’s grit and determination.
Gehring’s tireless dedication to all things bison garnered him accolades from many in the bison community. As part of his service to the NBA, Gehring still serves on the past presidents’ council, making the voting on nominations a little tricky for the rest of the group. Past presidents’ council chair, Gail Griffin, who did the honors of presenting the award, noted that there was some evasive maneuvering done to keep Gehring in the dark about being this year’s recipient.
Gehring received the award during the association’s annual fundraiser dinner, in which 500 of his friends and colleagues in the bison community celebrated the recognition. The group went on to raise nearly $70,000 that evening for the NBA and its partner foundations, the National Buffalo Foundation and the Throlson American Bison Foundation.
Caskey named CEO of NCGA
Neil Caskey, a long-time professional in the agricultural arena, has been tapped to lead the National Corn Growers Association as its new CEO, according to the organization’s board of directors. Caskey assumed the role on Feb. 27.
NCGA board members say they are pleased to name someone of Caskey’s caliber to the top job.
“Neil’s experience in agriculture is extensive, and he is well known as someone who gets the job done well,” said NCGA President Tom Haag. “The board and I are certain that Neil will usher in new ideas and take the organization to new heights.”
Caskey has served as NCGA’s vice president of communications and industry relations for over four years and spent over a decade promoting agricultural issues as executive vice president at OBP Agency, a leading advertising and public relations firm. His professional background also includes work for the American Soybean Association and as a legislative aide for a U.S. member of Congress.
Caskey said he is looking forward to leading the organization.
“It is quite an honor to lead an organization that I care so much about,” said Caskey. “We have a great team in place, and I look forward to forging full-speed ahead and pushing for wins on some of our top issues, like the Next Generation Fuels Act, fighting Mexico’s ban on genetically modified corn and securing reauthorization of the farm bill. NCGA is on the move.”
As vice president of NCGA, Caskey has been at the forefront of some of the organization’s top issues. Most recently, he has played a leading role in challenging Mexico on its efforts to ban genetically modified corn. Thanks to the efforts of NCGA on that front, the Biden administration has threatened to file a dissent decree if Mexico doesn’t reverse its actions.
Caskey holds a BA in political science from the University of Missouri-Columbia and an MBA from Webster University.
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