Tuesday, like Monday, was a day filled with speakers, walking and a little bit of tourism all rolled into one. The weather has finally started to clear up and we’re getting hints of spring. We started off our morning with breakfast at the FDIC building. Phillip Shively, Section Chief Economic Analysis and Statistics with the FDIC updated our class on the current economic climate and his forecast for the future. We greatly appreciated the FDIC’s hospitality and the chance to visit with Mr. Shively.
Our next stop was Gary Baise’s office with Kilpatrick-Stockton, LLP. In our walk to Mr. Baise’s office we were able to pass in front of the White House. It looked very peaceful with the fresh fallen snow over the past two days.
In Gary’s office we heard from Mr. Michael Dunn, Acting Chairman of the Commodity Future Trading Commission. Mr. Dunn explained to us his five critical agenda items. Which include:
1) Consumer Protection
2) Oversight of Risk
3) Collaboration with other regulatory agencies
4) Review of hedge exemption policies
5) Adequate CFTC Funding
Our next speaker gave us an update on the Food and Fuel issue. Samantha Slater of the Renewable Fuels Association talked about their agenda for 2009 and continuing to promote the use of renewable fuels. She also detailed some of the obstacles that are currently facing the biofuels industry. In order to expand our understanding of all sides of the issues and to become better leaders, we had the opportunity to hear from Michelle Perez of the Environmental Working Group. Although we all may not fully agree on the issues, we now have a better understanding of their stance on the environmental issues. We’d again like to extend our thanks to Gary Baise for his continued support and hospitality throughout our National Trip.
We then made our way to the EPA Building. It’s big. No – we’re serious – the building fills the block. Our first speaker of the afternoon was Allison Wiedeman, the senior policy advisor for the EPA Office of Wastewater Management. She updated us on the CAFO Regulations. Our next speakers were Vanessa Stifler-Claus of John Deere, Nikki Roy from the Pew Center on Global Climate Change and Michael Parr from DuPont. They are all members of USCAP the climate policy initiative from the private sector. USCAP’s goal is to promote a carbon cap and trade policy that everyone can agree is adoptable. After a detailed question and answer session we boarded the bus to the University Club. Our evening was generously sponsored by Case IH. We had the opportunity to visit with 18th District Congressman Aaron Schock and Gerry Salzman from Case IH (IALP Class of 1992). Our keynote speaker was Tom Buis, current National Farmers Union President and recently named CEO of Growth Energy. Buis’ speech was a great ending to an even better day. As always we greatly appreciate our sponsors and all of those that have made the Class of 2010’s National Trip possible.