Nebraska pig farmer Terry O’Neel to lead the Pork Checkoff
DES MOINES, IOWA – June 7, 2017 – Terry O’Neel, a pork producer from Friend, Nebraska, was elected as president of the National Pork Board at the organization’s June board meeting in Des Moines, Iowa. The National Pork Board is comprised of 15 farmer-directors representing America’s pig farmers.
“I am proud to represent our 60,000 pig farmers and I am both honored and humbled by the confidence that the board is placing in me,” O’Neel said. “From the farm, through food chain partnerships, to the consumer’s table, people care about how their food is produced. I look forward to helping to tell the story of real pig farming in the year ahead, and also to meet first hand with the leaders who deliver our product from farm to table.”
O’Neel and his wife Diane own and operate O’Neel Farms in Friend, Nebraska, a farrow-to-finish pig farm that markets 12,000 pigs annually. In addition to pigs, O’Neel Farms also grows corn and soybeans on 700 acres.
Serving with O’Neel on the executive officer team of the Pork Checkoff is vice president Steve Rommereim, a pork producer from Alcester, South Dakota, and, as treasurer, Brett Kaysen, a pig farmer from Nunn, Colorado. Jan Archer, a pork producer from Goldsboro, North Carolina, will serve as immediate past president. The four executive officers will serve one-year terms in their positions effective at the close of the June board meeting.
“As an industry, we stand ready to face our challenges and to celebrate our successes,” O’Neel said. “And we have so much going for us – from establishing our Secure Pork Supply plan to redesigning how we market our product. The Pork Checkoff is energized and we stand ready to roll up our sleeves and get to work in support of research, pork promotion and consumer and producer education.”
Additional Biographical Information
Terry O’Neel, was elected to his second board term in 2016, most recently serving as vice president of the board. From 2015-2016, O’Neel was board treasurer. O’Neel also served on the Domestic Marketing, Producer Services, and Pork Quality, Safety and Human Nutrition committees. He has hosted farm tours for the Alliance for the Future of Agriculture in Nebraska, The International Water for Food Project and various service, student and youth groups. He served as president of the Nebraska Pork Producers Board in 2007.
Steve Rommereim is the owner, manager and operator of Highland Swine in South Dakota. Highland Swine markets 10,000 pigs annually. He also grows corn and soybeans, and has a cow/calf operation. In March, Rommereim was elected to serve a second term as a producer-member of the National Pork Board. As 2016-2017 treasurer, he chaired the Finance committee and served on the Domestic Marketing committee. He is an Operation Main Street speaker and has served as a South Dakota delegate to the Pork Industry Forum since 2003. Rommereim was on the National Pork Board’s plan of work task force in 2009. He is past president of the South Dakota Pork Producers Association, serving on its board from 2001 to 2011. He also is past president of Agriculture United for South Dakota.
Brett Kaysen, is a partner in Flatland Showpigs, a seedstock producer that markets 480 pigs annually. Additionally, Dr. Kaysen is the Western Regional Sales Director for the U.S. Pork Business at Zoetis, a global animal health company where he leads a sales team serving pork producers and swine veterinarians with their animal health needs. Prior to joining Zoetis, Dr. Kaysen was in the Animal Sciences department at Colorado State University, Fort Collins. This past March Dr. Kaysen was elected to serve his second three-year term on the National Pork Board, and currently serves on the Animal Science committee and as board representative to the Swine Health Information Center. He is an Operation Main Street speaker and serves on the National Junior Swine Association board of directors. At the state level, Brett serves on the Colorado Pork Producers Council.
The National Pork Board has responsibility for Checkoff-funded research, promotion and consumer information projects and for communicating with pork producers and the public. Through a legislative national Pork Checkoff, pork producers invest $0.40 for each $100 value of hogs sold. Importers of pork products contribute a like amount, based on a formula. The Pork Checkoff funds national and state programs in advertising, consumer information, retail and foodservice marketing, export market promotion, production improvement, science and technology, swine health, pork safety and sustainability and environmental management. For information on Checkoff-funded programs, pork producers can call the Pork Checkoff Service Center at (800) 456-7675 or check the Internet at pork.org.