Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF) has named Dr. Sam Funk their director of agriculture analytics and research. Dr. Funk is responsible for serving IFBF’s statewide membership by conducting original research and economic analysis on agricultural issues. Dr. Funk succeeds David Miller who has retired after more than 20 years of service.
“We are very excited to have Sam on our staff to provide the leadership and experience in economics, research management and program leadership that Iowa Farm Bureau members have long relied on,” said Joe Johnson, IFBF executive director. “Sam’s background and experience, along with his knowledge of farming, will help us to continue to serve our members with economic analysis, global trade insight and agricultural policy knowledge.”
Dr. Funk is no stranger to agricultural analysis, having served as chief economist for the United Soybean Board, presenting in front of Congress and at the annual U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Outlook Forums. As the former economic and natural resources analyst for the Illinois Farm Bureau, Dr. Funk is also familiar with working with Farm Bureau members to connect them with government officials and external stakeholders to provide perspectives from the family farm on impacts of proposed legislation or regulations.
Dr. Funk later became Administrator of the Kansas Farm Management Association at Kansas State University, the same university where he earned his doctorate in agricultural economics. During this time, he provided insights to Congress leading up to the 2008 farm bill and collaborated with his colleagues to produce extension publications to inform farmers and stakeholders on drivers impacting federal farm policy.
“Challenges facing many farmers and rural communities at this time can be very difficult, so it is imperative to provide credible information, data and analyses to help farmers make informed decisions,” Dr. Funk said.
Dr. Funk was raised on a family farm in Missouri and spent time farming in Kansas where he served on his county Farm Bureau board of directors and chaired a Kansas Farm Bureau Livestock Advisory Committee. Dr. Funk and his wife, Karisa, have ten wonderful children ranging in age from nine months to 19 years of age. They are huge supporters of 4-H describing themselves as a “4-H loving family.” The Funks are excited to move to the Des Moines area and be a part of the tremendous agriculture scene in Iowa.