USDA announces Cotton Board appointments

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue recently announced the appointment of 13 members, 13 alternate members and one advisor to serve on the Cotton Board. The following appointees will serve three-year terms ending Dec. 31, 2020.

“The Cotton Board carries out research and promotional activities that strengthen the competitive position of cotton by expanding demand in domestic and foreign markets, improving fiber quality and lowering costs of production,” said Perdue. “These appointees represent a cross section of the industry and I know that the cotton industry will be well served by their work.”

The newly appointed member is Pace Hindsley, Marvell, Arkansas.

Re-appointed members are: Michael K. Kobori, Berkeley, California; Dustin Mancebo, Dos Palos, California; Debi M. Gregg, Irvine, California; Sally M. Gilligan, San Francisco, California; George G. LaCour Jr., Morganza, Louisiana; James C. Robertson Jr., Indianola, Mississippi; Akiko Inui, New York, New York; Chuck J. Ward, Hickory, North Carolina; David M. Dunlow, Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina; Bryan K. Patterson, Amherst, Texas; Debra R. Barrett, Edroy, Texas; and Sigifredo Valverde, Shallowater, Texas.

Newly appointed alternate members are: Rebecca E. Thom, Lake Providence, Louisiana; James W. McKinnon, Rye, New York; Silas K. Smith, Rocky Mount, North Carolina; Rafe A. Banks, Memphis, Tennessee; Jon T. Jones, Floydada, Texas, Laurie A. Sutandar, Frisco, Texas; Kody S. Bessent, Lubbock, Texas; and Emily L. Gigot, Seattle, Washington.

Re-appointed alternate members are: Aaron Barcellos, Los Banos, California; Marshall D. Draughn Jr., Severna Park, Maryland; Patrick L. Johnson, Jr., Tunica, Mississippi; Stefanie Rotta, Elkins Park, Pennsylvania; and Michael C. Popp, El Campo, Texas.

Re-appointed as advisor is Marshal Cohen, Upper Brookeville, New York.

The Secretary also appointed the following:

Rajiv Malik, Tiburon, California, to fill an importer alternate positon expiring Dec. 31, 2018;

Andrea Nypen, Lakeville, Minnesota, to fill an importer alternate position expiring Dec. 31, 2019;

Douglas P. Guiley, New York, New York, to fill an importer alternate position expiring Dec. 31, 2018; and

Ronnie N. Hopper Jr., Petersburg, Texas, to fill a producer alternate position expiring Dec. 31, 2019.

The Cotton Research and Promotion Act of 1966 (Act) authorized a national cotton research and promotion program that is both industry-operated and funded. Since 1966, Congress has authorized 22 industry-funded research and promotion boards to provide a framework for agricultural industries to pool resources and combine efforts to develop new markets, strengthen existing markets and conduct important research and promotion activities. The Agricultural Marketing Service provides oversight, paid for by industry assessments, which helps ensure fiscal responsibility, program efficiency and fair treatment of participating stakeholders.

More information is available on the AMS Cotton Board website at, or visit the Cotton Board’s website at