LANSING, Mich. — Michigan Farm Bureau began its first all-virtual annual meeting Dec. 2 with nominations and elections for the board of directors that leads the state’s largest farm organization. One new member was chosen to represent the organization’s vital Young Farmer program; all other elected officers were incumbents reelected to two-year terms on the MFB Board of Directors.
Tuscola County cash crop farmer Carl Bednarski was reelected to his fourth two-year term as MFB’s president. First elected to the position in 2014 as the organization’s 16th president, Bednarski raises corn, dry beans, sugar beets, soybeans and wheat alongside his wife, Lisa, and their three sons.
Seventh-generation Branch County farmer Paul Pridgeon was elected to represent MFB’s Young Farmer program on the board, succeeding Ottawa County apple grower Adam Dietrich. In partnership with his father, Bill, and brother Brian, Pridgeon raises hogs and 4,500 acres of corn, soybean and wheat. He and wife Nikki have three children.
St. Joseph County farmer Julie Stephenson was reelected to represent Farm Bureau’s Promotion & Education program on the board. Stephenson and husband Eric’s cash crop and seed corn operation also includes a farm market.
Reelected district representatives
Following nominations from delegates attending district-level meetings in early November, all incumbent directors representing even-numbered districts were reelected to their positions:
- Jennifer Lewis — District 2: Branch, Calhoun, Hillsdale, Jackson and Lenawee counties
- Jeff Sandborn — District 4: Allegan, Barry, Ionia, Kent, Ottawa
- Travis Fahley — District 6: Huron, Lapeer, St. Clair, Sanilac, Tuscola
- Michael Mulders — District 8: Bay, Gratiot, Isabella, Midland, Saginaw
- Leona Daniels — District 10: Alcona, Alpena, Arenac, Clare, Gladwin, Iosco, Ogemaw
- Dave Bahrman — District 12: the entire Upper Peninsula
Incumbents not up for reelection
Incumbents in odd-numbered districts were not up for reelection and therefore retain their seats:
- Brigette Leach — District 1: Berrien, Cass, Kalamazoo, St. Joseph, Van Buren
- Mike Fusilier — District 3: Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Washtenaw, Wayne
- Stephanie Schafer — District 5: Clinton, Shiawassee, Genesee, Eaton, Ingham
- Michael DeRuiter — District 7: Mecosta, Montcalm, Muskegon, Newaygo, Oceana, Osceola
- Ben LaCross — District 9: Benzie, Grand Traverse, Leelanau, Manistee, Mason, Missaukee and Wexford
- Patrick McGuire — District 11: Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet, Otsego, Presque Isle
Michigan Farm Bureau is the state’s largest farm organization, representing the interests of more than 40,000 farmer members.
— Michigan Farm Bureau
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