Forging Future Leaders: Unveiling the Distinctive Class of the Pork Leadership Institute

Des Moines, Iowa (Jan. 3, 2024) — The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) and the National Pork Board (NPB) proudly unveil the dynamic lineup for the Pork Leadership Institute’s (PLI) class of 2024. Each year, the PLI program selects a distinguished group of pork producers, and 2024 is no exception. Collaborating closely with state pork association executives and field representatives, NPPC and NPB have identified 19 outstanding individuals from across the nation to join this esteemed group.

The PLI Class of 2024:
• Alabama – Daniel Tubbs
• Arizona – Kevin Rogers
• California – Shelby Sopocy
• Colorado – Felipe Gallegos
• Illinois – Corbin Uitermarkt
• Indiana – James Douglas
• Iowa – Doug Gruver
• Iowa – Nick Gilliland
• Kansas – Hyatt Frobose
• Michigan – Colin Kruithoff
• Minnesota – Madison Hokanson
• Mississippi – Kramer Gary
• Missouri – Donnie Hays
• Montana – Logan Braaten
• New York – Michele Ledoux
• North Carolina – Blake Floars
• North Carolina – Mallory Strickland
• Ohio – Colleen Hord
• South Dakota – Mark Fuoss

Bryan Humphreys, NPPC’s CEO, underscores the vital role of the PLI program, stating, “PLI is instrumental in shaping the success of pork producers by cultivating knowledgeable industry ambassadors and future leaders. Participation in PLI is not just an opportunity; it’s a strategic imperative, as its graduates are empowered to articulate the compelling narrative of the pork industry — from local communities all the way to the heart of our nation’s capital.”

The comprehensive, yearlong PLI program comprises five sessions designed to provide a deep understanding of various aspects, including the federal legislative and regulatory process, the importance of international trade, the roles of national pork organizations and state pork associations, and contemporary challenges faced by producers. Additionally, participants undergo extensive media and communications training to emerge as effective grassroots advocates for the pork industry.

The Pork Leadership Institute (PLI) stands as a cutting-edge joint training initiative by the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) and the National Pork Board (NPB). Discover more about this transformative program at: Pork Leadership Institute.


NPPC is the global voice for the U.S. pork industry, protecting the livelihoods of America’s 66,000 pork producers, who abide by ethical principles in caring for their animals, in protecting the environment and public health and in providing safe, wholesome, nutritious pork products to consumers worldwide. For more information, visit