Potatoes USA 2019

Mar 25, 2019
Phil Hickman becomes Potatoes USA’s first board chairman from Virginia

Potatoes USA — the marketing and promotions board for the U.S. potato industry — elected a new board chairman and executive committee during its 47th annual meeting on March 14.

Phil Hickman of Horntown, Virginia, will serve a one-year term as chairman, making him the board’s first chairman from Virginia. Hickman brings vast experience to the Chairman role by actively serving on the Potatoes USA board for 11 years and farming since 1974, when he and his brother began Dublin Farms at the ages 20 and 22, respectively. Hickman grew up farming on property that has been in his family for over 100 years and has harvested potatoes on different portions of the land every year.

“My experience working on a small farm gives me the ability to work well with each region,” Hickman said. “This is going to be valuable as I work to get each region to work together on the common goal of building demand for U.S. potatoes.”

The majority of the Potatoes USA Executive Committee remains the same as the previous year. Appointed committee members were:

  • Jason Davenport of Arvin, California, was re-elected to Chair the Finance and Policy Committee.
  • Marty Myers of Boardman, Oregon, and Steve Streich of Kalispell, Montana, were re-elected to Co-Chair the International Marketing Committee.
  • Sheldon Rockey of Center, Colorado, and Heidi Alsum-Randall of Friesland, Wisconsin, were re-elected to Co-Chair the Industry Outreach Committee
  • Jaren Raybould of Saint Anthony, Idaho, was re-elected and Steve Elfering of Idaho Falls, Idaho, was elected to Co-Chair the Domestic Marketing Committee.
  • Chris Hansen of Bliss, New York, and Eric Schroeder of Antigo, Wisconsin, were re-elected to Co-Chair the Research Committee.

In Hickman’s acceptance speech, he thanked outgoing chairman Dan Moss of Declo, Idaho, for his leadership in the potato industry. Hickman hopes to continue what Moss has done best — keeping everyone in the industry focused in the same direction. Hickman mentioned one area of focus will be to increase retail sales. Lastly, he conveyed that Potatoes USA works to grow the entire U.S. potato industry.

“The fact that I’m Chairman shows Potatoes USA is for every farm, no matter the size or focus,” Hickman added. “The organization works to help all aspects of the industry and that’s something we need to remember as we continue to move forward.”

Hickman is a graduate of Virginia Tech University. His passion outside of potatoes is Virginia Tech football.

Top photo: Back row, Jason Davenport, Dan Moss, Phil Hickman, Heidi Randall, Jaren Raybould and Sheldon Rockey. Front row, Potatoes USA CEO Blair Richardson, Chris Hansen, Steve Streich, Eric Schroeder, Wisconsin and Steve Elfering. Not pictured: Marty Meyers.






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