New ASA DuPont Young Leader Finding Benefits in Leadership Training
Wabasso, Minn., farmer Adam Guetter knew biodiesel was a serious economic generator for Minnesota agriculture prior to his training during the American Soybean Association (ASA)’s DuPont Young Leader Program. Guetter just didn’t realize the extent of Minnesota’s leadership in the national biodiesel movement.
“I wasn’t fully aware of how important Minnesota is to national biodiesel production,” says Guetter, who will be an at-large MSGA director for one year. “It’s just one of those things you tend to overlook – you raise soybeans, dump them at the elevator, and don’t fully realize where they all go and how they’re used.”
The DuPont Young Leader program wasn’t the first time Guetter participated in a soy leadership program. In 2015, he toured Asia on a United Soybean Board See for Yourself mission.
“That was a real eye-opening experience,” he says. “They’re jacked up about our beans over there, and now I’ve been able to see how important both domestic and international trade are to soybean growers.”
Guetter attended the first sessions at DuPont’s headquarters in Johnson City, Iowa, in November 2017, which conflicted with what would have been his first MSGA board meeting. He was trained on media speaking, ag leadership and conducting board meetings.
“A lot of the training revolved around standard protocol of how things work in the agricultural industry,” Guetter says. “It was really emphasized how much the industry needs soybean boards at the county, state and national levels.”
Guetter, 35, and his wife, Melanie, completed the DuPont Young Leader training earlier this month at Commodity Classic in Anaheim, Calif. One of the speakers included ASA Treasurer and MSGA Director Bill Gordon, who spoke to the group about balancing ag leadership with family and work responsibilities.
“It was very educational to hear from guys like Bill who are so involved in soybean boards but also maintain a family,” says Guetter, who also has a young son, Max. “There were a lot of everyday takeaways from both sessions.”
Guetter also had a few minutes at Commodity Classic to slip away and take a gander at the mammoth Ford F550 truck the DieselSellerz have built for his brethren at the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council (MSR&PC).
“The truck was a big hit out there, not just with me, but with the other DuPont Young Leaders,” Guetter says. “The younger generation is especially excited about this truck, and it makes for a good connection on the farm.”
Adam Guetter says his wife, a Redwood County social worker who helps on the family farm, also found the program beneficial.
“She was really surprised at how much of the training she could implement to her off -farm job,” Adam Guetter says. “She really enjoyed being there and learning.”
Although Guetter has fulfilled all of his formal program duties, he’s planning to apply to become one of the ASA’s 10 Young Leaders who participate in July during Capitol Hill visits in Washington D.C.
First things first, Guetter said he was looking forward to attending his first MSGA board meeting, which took place in April.
“The people I’ve met so far on the MSGA board are all very welcoming. I’d really like to build some relationships,” says Guetter, who sits on the organization’s new uses and advocacy action teams. “I’m excited to apply these skills to soybean leadership and to being a better
person in general.