Upcoming Conference Designed for Agricultural Lenders and Agri-Business Bankers

The WBA Agricultural Bankers Conference, held April 5-6 in Wisconsin Dells, is designed to update Wisconsin's ag bankers and hone their skills through informative sessions and networking opportunities. 

Following the WBA Ag Bankers Section annual meeting, the conference will begin with an update from Washington given by ABA's Steve Apodaca of the Center for Agricultural and Rural Banking. Then, Leah Ziemba, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP, will lead a session discussing environmental regulatory issues, including the state-federal agency interaction between the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the impact that USEPA is having on the WDNR and environmental regulatory issues that impact the state's agricultural community. 

Next, Dr. Marin Bozic, University of Minnesota, will provide attendees with a dairy market outlook that covers the supply and demand factors influencing the dairy markets over the next year. His presentation pays special attention to the competitiveness of upper Midwest dairy producers in the new market regime characterized by declining milk price basis and lower grain prices. 

After lunch with the conference exhibitors, USDA Farm Service Agency's Doug Lund will introduce the attending bankers to what's new at FSA in 2017. WBA's Government Relations team will provide a quick update on the goings-on in Madison and Washington, D.C., followed by a presentation on commodity risk from Michael Irgang, Global Risk Management Corporation. Irgang's informative session will cover a variety of topics related to commodity risk management, including addressing today's price volatility and how it impacts the cash flows of agribusinesses and - ultimately - the credit quality of an agricultural bank's lending portfolio. The first day of the conference will conclude with the always-popular "Wisconsin-Based Success Story" and a reception with the exhibitors. 

After breakfast, Dr. David Kohl will kick off the second day of the conference by moderating a panel discussion: "Alpha Pup Farmers." This panel will bring together successful young farmers to see how they use technology, market their production, discover their business objectives, and learn what they think about their banker. Next, Dr. Kohl will lead a session that looks ahead to the variables, perspectives and trends that need to be high-priority as the industry enters a post-economic super cycle landscape. 

Finally, Kit Welchin, Welchin Communication Strategies, will present attendees with actionable techniques for effective communication, including a how-to on building productive work relationships with customers and approaches on handling difficult customers, whether internal or external. 

Don't miss this spring's kickoff to a season of roller coaster economics in agriculture! Learn more details about the conference sessions and register today at www.wisbank.com/agbankers.