November/December 2010
Spudman 7: Frank Muir

Frank Muir is president and chief executive officer for the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC). He earned his MBA in marketing with highest honors from Brigham Young University. Before moving to Idaho, he held brand marketing and executive positions at General Mills and ConAgra Foods. His last position was vice president and general manager for the Venture Brands Division, representing $1 billion in revenue.

What are the best words of advice you’ve received?
A man who worked with my father once observed: “Your Dad treated everyone with equal respect, from janitors to generals.” While it wasn’t advice he was offering, I have never forgot that nugget of insight and wisdom.

What are your goals for the next 12 months?

  • Do my part to successfully move the 2010 potato harvest via impactful IPC advertising, publicity and promotions.
  • Increase consumer awareness and enthusiasm to look for the “Grown in Idaho” seal.
  • On a personal level, welcome two new sons-in-law and our second grandchild to our family.

What do you do to relax to get away from work?
Skiing at 50 MPH, running at 8 MPH and reading histories at 0 MPH. All three focus my thoughts and relax me.

What would you like to be your lasting legacy?

My father (who was also my scoutmaster) always taught us to leave a campsite better than we found it. I hope it will be said that I helped leave the Idaho potato industry better as a result of my contributions. I also hope to have a positive impact on the people’s lives that I come in contact, business and otherwise. Finally, I hope to be playing flag football and skiing until I am at least 70!

What are the top three things on your bucket list/must-do list?

  • See all four of our children happily married, successfully raising their own families.
  • See my own grandsons play football.
  • Learn to play the piano, guitar and if I don’t run out of time, learn Spanish or Mandarin.
  • Sky dive and bungee jump (being held up by a wife who thinks these “bucket list” items are more likely to help me “kick the bucket!”)

What would you be doing if you weren’t with the Idaho Potato Commission?

I would still be in the food business — doing my best to revitalize another brand or two.

What is one truth you’ve learned about the potato industry?

Every new crop year will surprise me, and offer new challenges. In fact, I am surprised every day, and I love that. Even more importantly, I have developed a deep kinship with the folks in this crazy industry, and it inspires me.

75 Applewood Dr. Ste. A
P.O. Box 128
Sparta, MI 49345
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