The National Cotton Council’s Cotton Leadership Committee has chosen the 2006-07 Cotton Leadership class. The class will begin its first training session Sept. 24-29, including an orientation to the NCC and presentation skills training.

The Leadership Program, now in its 24th year, is intended to foster leadership skills in individuals who demonstrate the potential and desire to be leaders in the cotton industry. The NCC sponsors the program as a means of contributing to U.S. cotton’s future by training and encouraging industry members who will help define the industry’s future success.

Participants will gain a thorough understanding of all the industry segments and the common goals they share by participating in specialized business and media training and personal interaction with the cotton industry’s most influential leaders.

The 2006-07 class is comprised of four cotton producers and one participant from each of the six other industry segments: Producers –David Cochran, Greenville, Miss.; Patrick Johnson Jr., Tunica, Miss.; Tammy Leonards, Lettsworth, La.; and Clint Webb, Boston, Ga; Ginner – Scott Matlock, Sebastian Cotton & Grain, Sebastian, Texas; Warehouser – Eric Wanjura, Plainview Coop Compress, Plainview, Texas; Merchant – Felipe Esteve, ECOM, Dallas, Texas; Marketing Cooperative – Wayne Boseman, Carolinas Cotton Growers, Garner, N.C.; Cottonseed – Brandon Winters, Producers Coop Oil Mill, Oklahoma City, Okla.; and Manufacturer – Bryan Gregory, American Cotton Growers Denim Mill, Littlefield, Texas.

In addition to learning the role of the NCC within the U.S. cotton industry, the selected class will visit with industry leaders, tour production and processing operations, and observe research activities. They will attend the NCC’s annual meeting, visit with lawmakers in Washington, D.C., and participate in orientation sessions with Cotton Incorporated, the New York Board of Trade and DuPont Crop Protection.

Ron Nickell, the marketing cooperative representative of the 2003 class, said of his experience in the program, “What a benefit it is to go to different industry segments, talk to the decision makers and get their perspective on the issues of the day. I wish that everyone in the cotton industry could go through the leadership program. Our Industry would be the better for it.”

More than 200 industry members have participated in the leadership program since its inaugural 1983-84 class. The program is supported by a generous grant to The Cotton Foundation from DuPont Crop Protection and is administered by NCC’s Member Services department.