Seven people representing Minnesota agriculture have been named to the the Minnesota Center for Producer-Owned Energy board of directors. Established by a USDA grant to AURI, the Energy Center will assist projects that further Minnesota’s renewable fuels industry.

As required by the USDA, the Energy Center board includes representatives from Minnesota’s four largest agricultural commodities, two largest farm organizations and the state department of agriculture. Board members include Jim Boerboom of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, Richard Peterson of the Minnesota Corn Growers, Robert Kirchner of the Minnesota Soybean Growers, Richard Schieck of the Minnesota Pork Producers, Patrick Lunemann of the Minnesota Milk Producers Association, Al Christopherson of the Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation and Julie Bleyhl of the Minnesota Farmers Union. At the Center’s inaugural February meeting, Kirchner was elected board chair, Peterson vice chair and Schieck secretary/treasurer. The Center is expected to begin operating this spring.