Farmers & Ranchers will Discuss E30 & Rural Healthcare During 2017 S.D. Farmers Union Convention |

Farmers & Ranchers will Discuss E30 & Rural Healthcare During 2017 S.D. Farmers Union Convention

HURON, S.D. – Members are encouraged to attend the 2017 S.D. Farmers Union State Convention held in Huron at the Crossroads Hotel Nov. 30 and Dec. 1.

Experts will be discussing E30 and rural healthcare during the two-day convention where SDFU members will vote on policy that will be the focus of the 2018 legislative session in Pierre.

“When it comes to policy that impacts family farmers and ranchers, there are many changes coming down the pike – in our state and nation. It’s our hope that when members leave this convention they have a better understanding of the issues and what we can do to advocate for policy we need,” says Doug Sombke, SDFU President.

Along with policy development, industry experts will discuss pressing issues of healthcare, crop insurance and the future of E30.

Alana Knudson, Public Health Program Area Director at the University of Chicago NORC, will update members on healthcare and its impact on farming and ranching families.

Today, Knudson serves as a Principal Research Scientist and is the Co-Director of the Walsh Center for Rural Health Analysis at NORC. She also is the Deputy Director for the Rural Health Reform Policy Research Center, one of seven rural health research centers funded by the federal Office of Rural Health Policy.

“Studying health insurance among farmers is not new but it has picked up in the last 10 years,” says Knudson, who grew up on farm in rural North Dakota and conducted her first healthcare study of farmers in North Dakota in 2008.

Marc Rausch, Co-Founder and Executive Vice President of The Auto Channel, and Dale Christensen, Glacial Lakes Inc. board member, will engage members in a panel to discuss the benefits, future and impact of E30 on farm country.

SDFU Insurance Agent and Salem farmer Craig Blindert will discuss a new way to manage grain and soil enhancement.

South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Mike Jaspers is also invited to speak.

Along with policy, members will also vote for President and Vice President board positions. Doug Sombke, current President, and Wayne Soren, current Vice President, are both running unopposed for re-election.

To learn more about the 2017 Farmers Union State Convention and to register, visit To book a room, contact the Crossroads Hotel and Convention Center at 605-352-3204.

–South Dakota Farmers Union