While summer winds down, growers are ramping up their efforts to become the most effective leaders possible through the National Corn Growers Association’s Advanced Leadership Training Program, co-sponsored by Syngenta.

On Aug. 24, NCGA announced the second class, which will meet this September in Greensboro, N.C., to hone their leadership skills and prepare to lead the industry forward.

“As a graduate of the NCGA Leadership Academy, I understand the important role these programs play in developing the skill set required of an effective leader,” said NCGA President Bart Schott.

“This program develops the leadership NCGA needs to succeed in the future. We are grateful for Syngenta’s continued sponsorship of this key program."

During the nearly week-long course, a small group of active grower leaders will tackle tough leadership issues, such as organization design and behavior, troubleshooting, positive negotiations and advocacy communications.

The program, which provides intensive leadership training to a handful of well-qualified applicants, aims to help develop top notch state and national leadership that is empowered to share their skill set within the industry and community. This program builds upon the Leadership Academy that has helped develop corn industry leadership since 1986.

Attending Advanced Leadership Training this year are Bob Bowman (DeWitt, Iowa); Bill Chase (Wolsey, S.D.); Morris Heitman (Mound City, Mo.); Darrin Ihnen (Hurley, S.D.); Paul Taylor (Esmond, Ill.); and Kevin Skunes (Arthur, N.D.).

In March, attendees will meet again for Advanced Leadership II, which covers lobbying and coalition building, legal and fiduciary training, public policy briefings and agency visits.

Since 1986, NCGA, the state corn associations and, most importantly, the U.S. corn industry, have benefited tremendously from the original Leadership Academy, which provides invaluable media, communications, association management and public policy knowledge and skills to its participants.