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OABA Inaugural LAUNCH Class Graduates 21 Members

LAUNCH Prepares Future Agribusiness Leaders as Industry Faces Retirement Challenge

Congratulations to the 21 Ohio AgriBusiness Association member graduates who successfully completed the 2013 inaugural LAUNCH – or Leaders Achieving Unexpected New Career Heights – class. These agribusiness leaders were selected by their companies to undergo a robust executive leadership development program, which was created in partnership with Wilt PR to help our member companies fill the looming void of leadership talent as more than 50 percent of our workforce retires in the next 15 years.

Congratulations to the 2013 LAUNCH class graduates:

  • Jill Boyd – Morral Companies, LLC Sales/Project Manager
  • Julie Burris – Central Ohio Farmers Co-op, Inc. Propane Division Manager
  • Scott Crowder – Central Ohio Farmers Co-op, Inc. CFO
  • Daniel DeMartis – Solce Fertilizer Company Operations/Sales Manager
  • Grant Gates – Morral Companies, LLC Sales Representative
  • Seth Gerber – Gerber & Sons, Inc. Retail Store Manager
  • Logan Haake – Deshler Farmers Elevator Company Precision Technology Coordinator
  • Monty Heiby – Mercer Landmark, Inc. Branch Manager
  • Christy Hiles – Central Ohio Farmers Co-op, Inc. Credit Manager
  • Kristi Kress Wilhelmy – Barrett, Easterday, Cunningham & Eselgroth LLP Associate
  • Nathan Louiso – AgriGold Regional Sales Manager
  • Scott McAfee – The Andersons, Inc. Senior Account Representative
  • Matthew Obrock – Luckey Farmers Inc. Grain Originator
  • Rebekah Peck – DuPont Pioneer Marketing Communications Coordinator
  • Jerron Schmoll – DuPont Pioneer Technical Services Manager
  • Christopher Schwind – The Andersons, Inc. Operations Manager
  • Jared Skinner – Crop Production Services Facility Manager
  • Jerry Taylor – The Andersons, Inc. Area Operations Manager
  • Chad Tryon – Crop Production Services Plant Manager
  • Ty Vaupel – Alfagreen Supreme Sales & Marketing Manager
  • Todd Wise – Gerber & Sons, Inc. Sales Manager


LAUNCH helped prepare class participants for leadership roles through a curriculum that focused on:

  • Personal Insights and Diversity in Thinking Styles
  • Management Skills and Decision-Making
  • Communication and Presentation Skills
  • Global Issues in Agriculture
  • Sales and Marketing Principles
  • Ohio/Regional Trends in Agribusiness
  • State and Local Government
  • Strategic Planning, Goal Setting and Organizational Skills
  • Capstone Project Development, Implementation and Measurement


The group met for three days in January in Columbus, and wrapped up the course with a three-day session last week in Maumee.

To see photos from the event, “Like” the OABA’s Facebook page; click here, and then click the “Like” icon at the top of the page.

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