USA Rice and The Rice Foundation Elect New Leadership

Jul 21, 2016
Passing the USA Rice gavel:
Dow Brantley (left) and Brian King
Dow Brantley & Brian King
DALLAS, TX – New chairmen for USA Rice and The Rice Foundation were elected by their respective Boards of Directors during annual meetings here last week.
USA Rice’s new chairman, rice merchant Brian King, with Erwin Keith, Inc., will assume the two-year post on August 1, taking over for Dow Brantley, an Arkansas rice farmer who has been chairman of the group since 2014.
"Brian is going to make a great chairman," Brantley said.  "He is well versed in U.S. rice industry issues having served on the board of the USA Rice Merchants’ Association and as current chair of the USA Rice Western Hemisphere Subcommittee.”

King is a rice merchant with more than 23 years of rice and grain marketing experience.  He has been a member of the USA Rice Merchants’ Association since 2005 and has served on numerous USA Rice committees, including Sustainability, World Market Price, and the Biotechnology Task Force.  King also is an alumni of the Rice Leadership Development Program.

"Dow Brantley guided us through some challenging times and logged countless miles as an ambassador for our industry," said King.  "Many times he opened his farm and home up to visitors from Canada, Iraq, and most recently let the P.F. Chang’s folks come film a commercial at his farm.  And while he is stepping down as USA Rice Chairman, Dow will continue to serve on the Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee providing advice to the government on trade policy matters.”

"This is an exciting time for the American rice industry with many challenges and opportunities ahead," said Betsy Ward, president and CEO of USA Rice.  "I look forward to working with Chairman-elect King as we tackle these issues on behalf of the entire U.S. industry."

Charley Mathews, a California rice farmer and graduate of the Rice Leadership Development Program, was elected chairman of The Rice Foundation.  Mathews replaces Todd Burich with ADM Rice Inc. in Tarrytown, NY, who served as chairman of The Rice Foundation for two years.

“The breadth of work The Rice Foundation has been responsible for is astounding,” said Burich.  “Foundation-funded projects like the ongoing food safety research, a comprehensive analysis of rice consumption in the U.S. diet focusing on health and nutrition benefits, and the initial Ducks Unlimited study that reported a $3.5 billion cost for replacing rice lands with natural wetland habitat have exceeded expectations.  The Foundation and the industry are in good hands with Charley, and I know he’ll continue to identify more projects with far-reaching industry benefits.”

The Rice Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization, which serves as the research and education program arm for the rice industry.