ILLINOIS (WCIA) — Doug Schroeder is going to be passing the gavel to his replacement as the Chairman of the Illinois Soybean Association.

He’s served in that role for the last two years and previously held the Vice-Chairman position. Shroeder farms in southern McLean County, just north of Mansfield.

Stu Ellis: In giving up your chairmanship, are there some feelings you’re having about turning over this role to someone else here in a few days?

“Well, obviously there are,” Schroeder says. “I’ve spent 8 years on the board, invested a lot of time and energy, and I have a lot of comfort knowing that the next chairman is going to do an awesome job. His name is Steve Pitstick.”

Ellis: Something that I think more and more farmers should recognize is the relationship that has changed to a very positive way between Illinois soybean and Illinois corn. And just in the last 18 months, we are seeing some cooperative and collaborative efforts that have just never existed before.

“That’s right,” Schroeder says. “It’s not that the relationship with corn was bad before, but I’d rather say it’s great now.”

He attributed that to the new CEO of the Association.

“We were blessed to find a candidate in John Lumpe, that was a former CEO of the Ohio Soybean Board, and has really changed what we do in Illinois in a massively positive way,” Schroeder says.

Lumpe said much of that was Doug’s leadership as chairman.

“Doug has played an integral role in leading the Illinois Soybean Association over the past nine years as we have progressed as an organization, enhanced the reach to more farmers across the state, and advanced the future of soybean farmers,” Lumpe says. “Doug has led with kindness and determination serving as Chairman of the organization and will be dearly missed as a key piece of the Illinois Soybean Board. We thank Doug for his time and leadership.”

Some of Schroeder’s works-in-progress include promoting soy biodiesel fuels, with the help of the General Assembly.

“We found inner-city legislators sponsoring ag legislation. How cool is that! These bedfellows you make and the partnerships you make by just asking and being part, its proved to be very beneficial for use and I can’t wait to see where that goes,” Schroeder says.