WASHINGTON — Don Fast has been elected chairman of the U.S. Grains Council. The announcement came as part of the 52nd Annual Board of Delegates meeting held July 30-Aug. 1 in Vancouver, Wash.

“All of us understand that 95% of the world’s people live outside the United States and that many of them are making great strides economically,” Mr. Fast said. “Our world is getting smaller and our markets are getting bigger. That’s the reality we face, and that’s what we’ve chosen as our theme for the coming year, ‘Smaller World, Bigger Markets.’ We have a lot of work to do, it will be a challenging year . . . but the strategic situation hasn’t changed.”

Mr. Fast is a certified seed grower, farming farm both an irrigated (flood and pivot) and dryland seed spring wheat and durum operation in Montana. He and his wife, Sheila, also raise sheep.

He received a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Montana and went on to attend the U.S. Army Officers’ Candidate School in Maryland. His military service was rewarded with several medals for participation in the Vietnam campaign, including the Bronze Star for meritorious service.

Other members of the 2012-13 U.S.G.C. board of directors include:

• Julius Schaaf, vice-chairman, Iowa Corn Promotion Board;
• Ron Gray, secretary/treasurer, Illinois Corn Marketing Board;
• Wendell Shauman, past chairman, Illinois Corn Marketing Board;
• Thomas Sleight, president, U.S. Grains Council;
• Dave Lyons, agribusiness sector director, Louis Dreyfus Commodities;
• Mark Seastrand, barley sector director, North Dakota Barley Council;
• Chip Councell, corn sector director, Maryland Grain Producers Utilization Board;
• Bill Kubecka, sorghum sector director, United Sorghum Checkoff Program;
• Jere White, state checkoff sector director, Kansas Grain Sorghum Producers Association;
• Jim Tobin, at-large director, Monsanto Co.;
• David Howell, at-large director, Indiana Corn Marketing Council;
• Charles Ring, at-large director, Corn Producers Association of Texas; and
• Darrel McAlexander, at-large director, Iowa Corn Promotion Board.