Boetel Named Director of UW-River Falls Center for Agricultural Business Management and Engagement

Aug. 29, 2012— Brenda Boetel, UW-River Falls associate professor of agricultural economics and UW-Extension agricultural marketing specialist, has been appointed director of the newly created Center for Agricultural Business Management and Engagement (CABME). The CABME is made possible by a $250,000 gift to the UW-River Falls Foundation by CHS, Inc, a leading global agribusiness owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the United States. 

The vision of the CABME is to serve students and the agricultural community by providing and coordinating learning opportunities that develop knowledgeable leaders through teaching, research, and outreach. The Center will provide: 

Students with the ability to participate in undergraduate research examining agricultural business and production problems; 

Research results and analytical tools that will assist industry and government in addressing challenges in modern production agriculture and agribusiness; 

Students with the opportunity to gain practical job experience through internships, participation in professional conferences, and international travel programs; 

An integrated outreach program designed to disseminate research results that will further development and improvement of agricultural businesses.    

The initial activities of CABME will focus on agricultural commodity price risk and agribusiness management issues. Managing price risk will focus on evaluation of price volatility, market structure, government policy and insurance products. Agribusiness management activities will include financial and strategic management, evaluation of business profitability, transition planning, and industry organization. 

CABME will also be the key campus partner in the annual Rod Nilsestuen lectureship in sustainability, conservation, and cooperatives, which was supported by a gift from the Ralph K Morris Foundation. 

The gift from CHS, Inc. includes funding to expand the university's recruitment and marketing efforts related to agronomy/crops and soils to fill the pipeline with qualified graduates in these high demand fields.  

"As a leading global agribusiness, CHS is proud to support the Center for Agricultural Business Management and Engagement, which will be key in providing exceptional learning opportunities for the next generation of leaders in agriculture," said William Nelson, vice president, CHS Corporate Citizenship.  

In addition to her background in agricultural and applied economics, Boetel has an interest in international development. Boetel holds a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota and focuses on the areas of grain and livestock marketing and price analysis in her role with UW Extension. 

"Under Dr. Boetel's leadership, this new center will leverage the University's strengths in agriculture and business to address key regional and global issues, and will provide extraordinary opportunities for our students," said UW-River Falls Chancellor Dean Van Galen. "We are grateful to CHS, Inc. for their generous gift and continued support of UW-River Falls." 

About CHS, Inc. 

CHS, Inc. ( is a leading global agribusiness owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the United States. Diversified in energy, grains and foods, CHS is committed to helping its customers, farmer-owners and other stakeholders grow their businesses through its domestic and global operations. CHS, a Fortune 100 company, supplies energy, crop nutrients, grain marketing services, livestock feed, food and food ingredients, along with business solutions including insurance, financial and risk management services. The company operates petroleum refineries/pipelines and manufactures, markets and distributes Cenex® brand refined fuels, lubricants, propane and renewable energy products. 

For more information, contact Blake Fry, UW-River Falls special assistant to the chancellor, at 715-425-3711 or


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