WASHINGTON — Ryan LeGrand, current U.S. Grains Council director in Mexico, has been promoted to president and chief executive officer for the U.S.G.C. He will take over for Thomas N. Sleight, who announced his retirement in February.

Mr. LeGrand will begin his new role in mid-June.

“His steadfast and level-headed leadership comes at a critical time amid challenges around the world for U.S. trade and a rapidly growing program of Council activities in markets that show potential for new demand,” said James Stitzlein, chairman of the U.S.G.C.

Mr. LeGrand joined the organization in Mexico in 2015 and has served as the director of the Council’s Mexico City office since 2016. He has overseen the expansion of the Council’s programming in that country to include ethanol promotion and worked to steady relations with the U.S. and Mexican feed and livestock industries during the negotiations of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (U.S.M.C.A.).

During his time with the U.S.G.C. in Mexico, Mr. LeGrand led efforts for U.S. grains, including increasing U.S. DDGS demand, cultivating both large and small craft brewers to purchase more U.S. barley and encouraging sorghum use by Mexican livestock producers.

He previously worked for Gavilon as the director of ingredients in Mexico, located in Guadalajara, managing the company’s feed ingredients trading, import and distribution throughout the country. He also was the director of exports for Hawkeye Gold, L.L.C., exporting DDGS to Latin America and Asia. Early in his career, he worked a year in the U.S.G.C.’s Washington office as a manager of international operations.

Mr. LeGrand has a bachelor’s degree in international business from Oklahoma State University.

“Ryan has shown dedication to measured growth for U.S. grains and co-products in Mexico, our most important export market and neighbor,” Mr. Stitzlein said. “We are certain the Council is in good hands with Ryan’s confident leadership and look forward to working with him in this new role.”