Board of Directors

Practical Farmers’ board is composed primarily of farmers – a key requirement that helps the organization stay focused on its farmer members’ priorities.

Practical Farmers of Iowa is governed by a 12-person board of directors. To ensure that we stay focused on our members’ priorities, 10 of the 12 board members must be farmers. One farmer director is elected from each of our five Iowa districts. Additionally, five farmers and two non-farmers are elected from the membership at-large. Board members serve in many capacities, from ensuring we maintain fiscally sound and effective programs to providing leadership, advice and direction to staff and volunteers.

Board Duties

The Practical Farmers of Iowa board:

  1. Determines the Practical Farmers mission and purpose
  2. Provides guidance on our programs and services
  3. Ensures that Practical Farmers has adequate resources for its programming
  4. Serves as the “public face” for the organization
  5. Provides proper financial oversight
  6. Selects the Executive Director
  7. Supports the Executive Director and reviews his or her performance
  8. Guides the development of a Strategic Plan
  9. Ensures legal and ethical integrity, and maintains accountability; and
  10. Recruits and orients new board members and assesses its own performance.

Practical Farmers Board of Directors

DavidRosmannDavid Rosmann (at-large)
Farmer | Avoca, IA

David Rosmann operates Rosmann Family Farms with his wife Becky, daughters Maggie and Ellie, and other family members in Avoca, Iowa. The organic farm includes cattle, hogs, row crops, pasture, hay, popcorn and several small-grain varieties. 

Carmen Black (at-large)
Vice President
Farmer | Solon, IA

CarmenBlackCarmen Black operates Sundog Farm and Local Harvest CSA near Solon, Iowa. She farms collaboratively with a committed farm team, and they raise vegetables for more than 200 families that are Community Supported Agriculture members. They rotationally graze lamb, goat and laying hens that are direct-marketed locally. Carmen grew up near Solon and returned to Iowa to farm after living out of state for a few years. She worked for Susan Jutz, founder of Local Harvest CSA, and purchased her farm (formerly known as ZJ Farm) and CSA business in 2016. 

20240207 JonBakehouseJon Bakehouse (Southwest)
Farmer | Hastings, IA

Jon Bakehouse farms with his wife Tina, son Anderson and parents near Hastings, Iowa. The Bakehouses raise corn and soybeans and have a cow-calf herd. As the fifth generation farming his family’s land, Jon has conducted PFI on-farm research for over seven years and unofficial field trials his entire farming career.

20240207 GayleOlsonGayle Olson (Southeast)
Farmer | Winfield, IA

Gayle Olson and her husband, Jeff, farm near Winfield, Iowa. Their operation includes conventional and organic acres, and they grow a variety of row crops, small grains, alfalfa and beef cattle. Gayle also serves as the assistant to the director for Iowa’s Center for Agricultural Safety and Health.

NathanAndersonNathan Anderson (Northwest)
Farmer | Aurelia, IA

Nathan Anderson owns and operates Bobolink Prairie Farms near Aurelia, Iowa, raising corn, soybeans, cattle, small grains and hay. Nathan and family have worked to grow their cattle herd while improving grazing management and incorporating cover crops through on-farm research.


JackBoyerJack Boyer (North Central)
Farmer | Reinbeck, IA

Jack Boyer and his wife Marion raise corn, seed corn, soybeans, cereal rye and cover crops near Reinbeck, Iowa. Jack has been conducting on-farm research on cover crops as part of PFI’s Cooperators’ Program since 2014. Jack also has experience as a Tama County commissioner and currently serves as the Conservation Districts of Iowa Region 7 director and treasurer.


Kristine Lang (at-large)Kristine Lang
Non-farmer | Brookings, SD

Kristine Lang manages a local food and cut flower research and extension program through South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota, where she is an assistant professor and extension consumer horticulture specialist. Kristine earned her doctorate in horticulture and sustainable agriculture from Iowa State University.

MattLiebmanMatt Liebman (at-large)
Non-farmer | Ames, IA

Matt Liebman of Ames, Iowa, is a retired faculty member from the Department of Agronomy at Iowa State University. Matt’s research, teaching and outreach work focused on ways to use ecological processes to create farming systems that are productive, profitable, resilient and environmentally sound.

Shaffer Ridgeway (Northeast)
Farmer | Waterloo, IA

ShafferRidgewayShaffer Ridgeway lives and farms in Waterloo, Iowa, and is the first Black person to serve on PFI’s board of directors. Originally from Alabama, he is a district conservationist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service. In 2019, he and his wife Madelyn established their farm, Southern Goods, with an emphasis on growing Southern vegetables for Midwesterners. He markets through direct marketing, wholesale and the We Arose Co-op.

Margaret Smith (at-large)
Farmer | Hampton, IA

Margaret SmithMargaret Smith and her husband, Doug Alert, operate Ash Grove Farm, a diversified, certified organic crop and livestock operation near Hampton, Iowa. Margaret is a forage agronomist for Albert Lea Seed with previous experience working for ISU Extension and Outreach and the ISU Department of Agronomy. Margaret and Doug are also PFI on-farm research cooperators and lifetime PFI members. In 2019, they received PFI’s Sustainable Agriculture Achievement Award. 

Tim Youngquist (at-large)
Farmer | Zearing, IA

20240207 TimYoungquistTim Youngquist farms corn and soybeans on his family’s heritage farm near Kiron, Iowa, along with his wife, Mandy, and his parents, Dennis and Ann Youngquist. He has overseen the creation of buffer strips using native prairie in fields and riparian zones on his family land. Tim also grows and harvests prairie for native plant propagation. Tim serves as the farmer liaison for Iowa State University’s STRIPS program, where he helps farmers and landowners implement prairie strips on their farmland. 

Larry Kallem, Ex officioRon Rosmann and Larry Kallem
Former Exec. Director, IA Assn of Co-ops | Ames, IA

Larry Kallem of Ames, Iowa, is a founding member of PFI. In the midst of the farm crisis, Larry, along with Dick and Sharon Thompson, worked to organize PFI, a group of farmers eager to work together testing novel solutions to the pressing economic, social and ecological farming challenges of the time.