Making a transition in Florida this month! … and saying ‘Thanks’ to a giant outstanding in our field

With the Commodity Classic taking place in Orlando, March 9-11, the Michigan wheat industry will mark the end of a very big ‘first.’

Cass City wheat farmer David Milligan will step down from the Executive Committee of the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) during their meetings just prior to Commodity Classic.  Milligan, currently NAWG Past President, served an unprecedented two consecutive years as President of the National Association of Wheat Growers before moving to Past President last year.  Prior to that he served in both the Treasurer and Secretary positions.

As COVID dramatically limited his participation in 2020-2021 NAWG activities, the NAWG Board elected him to a second term as president – notably the first time that Michigan had ever led the NAWG Board.  Milligan presided over his final NAWG Board meeting in March 2022, during the Commodity Classic in New Orleans.

David Milligan was a charter member of the Michigan Wheat Program and its Board chairman for nine years.  He was invited to join the NAWG Board – the first time Michigan had a representative on the national board – in 2013, after having served on multiple NAWG committees.

At the time, he commented: “The opportunity to serve on these NAWG committees, really opens your eyes to how policy, national research, domestic and international marketing, and association operations are developed on a national level,” Milligan said.

“Sometimes we find best practices that we can utilize in Michigan and sometimes we find some unique things about Michigan that we can share nationwide,” he said.

David Milligan has remained as a non-voting member of the Mi Wheat Program board, serving as its NAWG liaison from 2021-2023.  The sharing of information has been important to keep both the Michigan Wheat Program on the cutting edge of national activities and to keep NAWG aware of Michigan’s activities and issues.

Perhaps as much as any other single person, Milligan has pushed to create and elevate Michigan’s wheat check-off.  He guided the fledgling board into a position of leadership and innovation to benefit wheat producers throughout the state.

Thank you, Dave!  And thanks to his family for sharing him!  About 8,000 Michigan wheat farmers have benefitted from his leadership on the national and state levels.