Arkansas' Larry McClendon named NCC vice chairman

Marianna, Ark., cotton ginner Larry McClendon has been elected vice chairman of the National Cotton Council of America. The move puts McClendon in line to succeed John Pucheu, a producer from California, as NCC chairman in 2008.

Pucheu, who farms in Tranquillity, Calif., became chairman of the Council at its annual meeting in Austin, Texas.

He succeeds another Arkansas grower, Allen Helms, who becomes chairman of the NCC Executive Committee.

A cotton farmer since 1966, Pucheu is co-owner of Pucheu Brothers Ranch and a director of the Westside Farmers Co-op Gin.

McClendon, former president and now chairman of the National Cotton Ginners Association, began farming with 500 mostly rented acres in 1975. He now farms several thousand acres in northeast Arkansas with about 60 percent of those in cotton.

Besides being a ginner, McClendon is also a warehouseman and a cotton association executive. He and his wife, the former Betty Joe Oxner, have two children and three grandchildren.

This year's chairman, John Pucheu, has been active in state, regional and national cotton organizations. He previously served as chairman of the NCC's American Cotton Producers and as a director of the NCC and of its export promotions arm, Cotton Council International.

He is a director and former chairman of both Supima and the Cotton Board. He also has served as president of the California Cotton Growers Association and as board chairman of Calcot, Ltd. Pucheu holds a degree in agricultural economics from the University of California, Davis, and is a graduate of the California Ag Leadership Program.

Elected as a NCC vice president was Shane Stephens, a Greenwood, Miss., warehouseman. Re-elected as NCC vice presidents were: Robert Norris, a Bakersfield, Calif., cooperative official; Charles Owen, a Pima, Ariz., ginner; Gail Kring, a Lubbock, Texas, crusher; Robert Weil, II, a Montgomery, Ala., merchant; and Harding Stowe, a Belmont, N.C., textile manufacturer. Craig Shook, a Corpus Christi, Texas, producer, was re-elected secretary-treasurer.

NCC staff officers for 2007 include: Mark Lange, NCC president/chief executive officer; John Maguire, senior vice president, Washington operations; Allen Terhaar, vice president, foreign affairs; Gary Adams, vice president, economics and policy analysis; Craig Brown, vice president, producer affairs; Bill Norman, vice president, technical services; Harrison Ashley, vice president, ginner services; and Fred Johnson, vice president, administration and program coordination.

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