INDIANAPOLIS — Every year, board members at the Indiana
Soybean Alliance help direct checkoff funds that develop, research and promote
agriculture and support educational programs.
Four soybean farmers were elected to join a team of
reelected board members at ISA. They will start their three-year term in
Newly elected members are Elaine Gillis of Dunkirk, Matthew
Chapman of Springport, Craig Williams of Oaktown and Chris Cherry of New
“With the ever-growing challenges and changes soybean
farmers face each year, the work we do is important to ensure that the markets
for our state’s soybeans continue to grow,” said Jane Ade Stevens, ISA chief
“It’s vital for the success of Indiana’s soybean industry
that we have involved farmers on the board to direct how farmer’s soybean
checkoff dollars are used.”
New board member Chapman said he looks forward to helping
make a difference through his involvement with ISA.
“My main goal is to educate the public,” he said. “I think
this country really lacks knowledge, unfortunately, about where their food comes
from, how it is produced. Therefore, they lack the respect for what we
Chapman said that having a well-informed consumer is
especially important in agricultural markets.
“You want someone who is confident in what you’re doing and
appreciates it,” he said. “That goes for globally, as well. A lot of our
business is other countries.”
While he is new to ISA, Chapman has been involved in
agriculture his whole life. It runs in his blood, and he is several generations
deep in the farming line of business.
After being involved with 4-H and FFA at Shenandoah High
School, Chapman studied agricultural economics at Purdue University. He has been
farming full-time ever since.
He grows corn, beans, wheat and hay and also helps run a
swine finishing farm.
Chapman has been actively involved with Indiana Farm Bureau
and served on the Young Farmer Committee.
His desire to be involved with ISA stems from his passion
for spreading the word about ag.
“I feel like they are doing an excellent job promoting our
soybean industry and views locally and globally,” he said. “We can grow all the
soybeans we want, but if we can’t sell them, than what’s the point?
“We need to be telling our story every time we’re out with
someone that doesn’t know we do.”
Chapman and the other three new board members will serve
alongside the following reelected members: Jeanette Merritt, Peru; Kevin Wilson,
Walton; Levi Huffman, Lafayette; and Mark Nigh, Shelbyville.