KISSIMMEE, FLORIDA, U.S. — Montana wheat and barley farmer Bing Von Bergen was elected and installed as the new president of the National Association of Wheat Growers at the Association’s board of directors meeting on Feb. 29.
Von Bergen is a native of Moccasin, Montana, U.S., in the center part of the state. Prior to becoming a NAWG officer, he served in the officer corps of the Montana Grain Growers Association for five years and on the NAWG board, chairing the Domestic and Trade Policy Committee in 2008 and 2009.
In addition to running his farm, Von Bergen is the co-owner of Heartland Seed Company, which specializes in small grain seeds as well as grass and alfalfa seed. He has also served in several leadership roles in his community, including on a local co-op board, bank board and school board.
After serving in the U.S. Army, Von Bergen attended Montana State University. He and his wife Lois have two college-age children.
As president, Von Bergen will also be serving as acting chief executive officer while the association undertakes a search process for a new staff lead.
“I am entering this new role during what some may consider a challenging time for our association and our industry, but I see a lot of opportunity for us to grow and improve,” Von Bergen said. “I appreciate my fellow growers entrusting me with these duties and responsibilities, and I will work diligently to ensure I live up to them.”
Other NAWG officers elected and installed at the meeting include:
• Paul Penner, Hillsboro, Kansas, U.S., as first vice-president;
• Brett Blankenship, Washtucna, Washington, U.S., second vice-president;
• Gordon Stoner, Outlook, Montana, U.S., secretary-treasurer;
• Erik Younggren, Hallock, Minnesota, U.S., immediate past president.
Members of NAWG’s Executive Committee, known as officers, commit to serve five years when they first run for the role of secretary-treasurer. The NAWG Nominating Committee and NAWG board reaffirms their selection each year as they move into new roles on the officer team.