Contact: Lara Durben
Phone: (763) 682-2171
Note: Photos available up on request
(Buffalo, MN)… The Minnesota Turkey Research and Promotion Council (MTRPC) and the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association have announced election results for each of its Boards of Directors.
The newly elected directors are:
MINNESOTA TURKEY GROWERS ASSOCIATION
Paul Kvistad, Kvistad Poultry, Wood Lake (Incumbent)
Ken Gleaves, Turkey Valley Farms, Marshall
MINNESOTA TURKEY RESEARCH & PROMOTION COUNCIL
Scott Heymer, Red Bridge Farms, Princeton (incumbent)
Also appointed to an Allied position on the MTGA Board was Barry Koppen of Purina Animal Nutrition. This is Koppen’s first term on the MTGA board.
Eddie “Max” Velo, Evelo Inc., Rothsay (Grower-At-Large)
Loren Brey, Brey Farms, New Ulm (Breeder-At-Large)
All elected Board directors will serve three-year terms and assumed their seats on March 1. Each of these boards meet approximately six times per year to guide MTRPC and MTGA activities, respectively.
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is the agency responsible for conducting and certifying the MTRPC election, which was conducted by mail-in ballot in January. MTGA members voted for its Board election at the MTGA annual meeting on March 15 in Saint Paul, Minn.
Elected directors are listed alphabetically below, along with biographical information:
Loren Brey – MTRPC
Loren Brey is the owner of Brey Farms in Brown County, near Sleepy Eye, MN; he has been involved in the turkey industry for 30 years. Loren and his wife Brenda, raise 20,000 breeder hens a year on their farm. In addition to raising breeder hens, Loren also grows corn and soybeans. Loren has served as a school board member for several years for the Lafayette Charter School.
Loren and Brenda have two daughters – Morgan and Courtney.
Ken Gleaves – MTGA
Ken has been involved in the turkey industry for 38 years. Ken started in the turkey industry as a brooding manager for Shinn Turkeys in central Nebraska. He ended his time there managing three farms, feeding four farms and running two feed mills. Also, in that time, Ken and his wife, Diane had their own small hen farm for eight years.
During Ken’s time in Nebraska, he served on the board of directors for the Nebraska Turkey Growers Coop in Gibbon, NE, the only turkey processing plant in the state for many years. He was also involved in the Nebraska Poultry Industries.
Ken worked with the Willmar Poultry Company for seven years, first in the breeder division, then as a manager for company commercial farms. In 2014, Ken moved to Turkey Valley Farms and serves as their live production coordinator.
Ken and his wife Diane reside in Willmar. They have been married for 38 years and have five children and three grandchildren.
Scott Heymer – MTRPC
Scott Heymer, the owner of Red Bridge Farms, Inc. in Princeton, has been involved in the turkey industry for 40 years. Annually he raises 150,000 heavy toms.
Scott and his wife Lennea have been married for 32 years and have two children: Becky and Brian. Brian has joined them in working on the farm.
Barry Koppen – MTGA
Barry Koppen lives in Spicer, MN with his wife Megan. He has a Financial Economics degree from Gustavus Adolphus College. Barry started his career working for Jennie-O Turkey Store in 2010 as an Area Supervisor working the Benson Area servicing company, lease, and contract farms.
Barry started at Purina Animal Nutrition in 2013 as a Poultry Sales Specialist. At Purina, he works with turkey, pheasant, layer, and broiler producers across the country to provide them with feed ingredients, complete feed, and nutritional services.
Paul Kvistad – MTGA
Paul Kvistad, a second generation turkey farmer from Yellow Medicine County, owns and operates Paul Kvistad Poultry, which produces 200,000 light hens per year.
Currently Paul is serving on the Education/Workforce Committee for MTGA and has been on the board of the Yellow Medicine County Corn Growers for 15 years. He served as a past member/president for the Echo Lions Club for 12 years and a past board member for the Farmers Co-op Elevator for 9 years. In addition, he continues to usher at Swan Lake Church.
Paul and his wife Jamie have three sons: Hunter, Payton and Brock.
Max Velo – MTRPC
Max Velo has been actively involved in the turkey industry for 12 years. With a farm in Ottertail County, he raises 400,000 hens per year. Max is particularly interested in domestic and international turkey markets, as well as animal health.
Max’s family consists of Piper, Daryl, Kelsey, Alanna and Nita.
The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, MN, is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 450 turkey farmers raising approximately 46 million turkeys annually. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S.
MTRPC is the oldest check-off based commodity organization in Minnesota, celebrating 50 years in 2015. Since 1965, the MTRPC has worked diligently to encourage consumers to eat more turkey year-round, sponsor innovative turkey research and educate a variety of audiences about the benefits of turkey. Programming at the MTRPC is funded by a voluntary grower checkoff program.