Brady Holst (Plymouth, IL)
Western Illinois University (2011-2013)
University of Illinois (2013-2015) – Agricultural and Biological Engineering
Why are you interested in serving as an At-Large Board Director, and how are you qualified for the position?
I want to serve as an ISB/ISG At-Large Board Director to make larger, positive impacts on the agricultural market than I could do alone. I have the skills and desire to make an actual difference for soybean growers and would like to put those to use in the most effective way possible. Being a member of the Illinois Soybean Board would be a very effective way to make a positive change.
There is no doubt that due to large production and changes in consumer views and demands, as much needs to be done as possible to ensure profitability for farmers. One area I would enjoy being a part of is increasing demand. With my farming background, along with education and work in product development in the Ag Tech industry, I would have a depth of understanding of soybean products that would help to prove that switching to soybean products would be beneficial. I also feel I could identify possible areas for soybean products to be used instead because of my business experience in product development. Specifically, the importance to always be vigilant to areas where an opportunity could arise.
Another area I would like to make a larger impact is the area of consumer knowledge and trust in U.S. agriculture. I am very discouraged by the amount of false information spread in a very effective way. Soybean demand is driven by consumer demand, and consumer demand is changing due to the negative information about agriculture being spread. I think I have the ability to contribute ideas to improve this problem. Having a background in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, along with a knowledge of how to effectively market a message, I think I could provide useful solutions.
I am qualified for an At-Large Board Director position because of my experience in strategic planning of projects in previous jobs. My experience in product development included developing product ideas that align with a line of product to display a unified message and direction. Strategic planning involves evaluation of many factors such as industry climate, feedback from users, technology advancements, and many others.
I am also an American Soybean Association Young Leader, which includes several training seminars that are beneficial. Some of those help improve public speaking, media interactions, leadership, along with others that are tailored to advancing leadership skills across many areas.