He’s ‘Worth’ it: Lake Benton farmer elected Minnesota Soybean Growers Association president

Worth first served as MSGA president in 2005

More than 15 years after he first took the helm, Lincoln County farmer Bob Worth is returning as president of the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association.

“I’m excited to follow along in Mike Skaug’s shoes,” Worth said. “He has done a wonderful job representing Minnesota soybean farmers, as have all the past presidents.”

Worth has farmed for more than 50 years on his family farm in southwest Minnesota. He has volunteered as an MSGA director since 2002, serving in various capacities, including president, secretary and treasurer. Most recently, Worth was vice president under President Mike Skaug, who stepped down after one year leading MSGA. Skaug remains on the board as Polk County’s director.

“I truly enjoyed my time as president,” Skaug said after gaveling out his final meeting. “Our organization is healthy, we’re making an impact on both sides of the aisle in St. Paul, and we have a great mix of young and veteran leaders to keep this organization moving forward.”

Worth started farming with his father and now runs the family farm with his wife, Gail, and their son, Jon, and his family. Most recently, Worth was awarded the American Soybean Association’s Outstanding Volunteer Award. Worth previously served as an ASA director and vice president, in addition to sitting on numerous ASA committees during his years on the board.

“I feel as an older famer, I have plenty to offer MSGA,” Worth said. “My knowledge of the past, as well as my willingness to accept change will hopefully serve MSGA well as we move forward with all the changes in today’s agricultural climate. We need to continue pushing policies that will help soybean farmers stay profitable.”

Wells farmer Darin Johnson was named vice president, longtime director Brad Hovel of Cannon Falls advanced to secretary and Brownton farmer Ryan Mackenthun will serve as treasurer.

“I’m grateful to my fellow farmer-leaders for electing me vice president,” Johnson said. “I look forward to working under Bob and growing my advocacy skills in the year ahead.”

During the 2022 Legislative Session, Skaug and MSGA successfully advocated for funding for the Ag Innovation Campus, protected the biodiesel mandate and prevented further seed treatment regulations. During this year’s Farmfest, MSGA will meet with state and national legislators and agency leaders to discuss its legislative priorities

“Nothing happens alone,” Skaug said. “We’re successful because we work well together, we challenge each other on ideas and spark new ones. We have an excellent group of directors, an excellent lobbying team and talented staff. We will continue to be the premier advocacy organization for soybean farmers.”

The board also reappointed George Goblish to serve on the ASA board of directors. Goblish, who farms in Vesta, sits on ASA’s Executive Committee.

MSGA is the nation’s oldest state soybean advocacy organization and the first affiliate of ASA. Fueled by its grassroots membership base since 1962, MSGA celebrates its 60th anniversary Aug. 3 during a special event at Farmfest and will be selling $60, one-year memberships during the 2-hour event, which runs from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. All are welcome to attend.

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