Roetker Begins New Chapter with Co-op Team

Mings hires bookkeeper.

Alva, OK, January 10, 2018:  The Farmers Cooperative Association is excited to announce the recent hire of Dian Roetker as the new bookkeeper in the Buffalo office. Roetker replaces Britt Lenertz, who left the position in October to be closer to family in Coldwater. The position is a hybrid of bookwork and general hardware help, from making hydraulic hoses, cutting keys, carrying feed sacks and loading bulk cake. The job will fit Roetker very well, having many years of office experience in both the banking and oilfield industries, and the many years of farm and ranch work to fall back on.  
Branch manager, Beverly Mings, really wanted to take her time and find the right fit. “I interviewed a lot of candidates, all of great caliber,” Mings stated, “Dian and I just clicked right away and her varied experience would do very well in that position.”  Roetker started on January 2 and hasn’t looked back since.
Roetker makes her home northeast of Buffalo on the Roetker family farm. She is married to Buffalo native, Rodney, their blended family includes two daughters and a son. She really enjoys farm life, sitting on her porch watching the cattle and horses, and playing with her six dogs.
“Being close to home and being able to see all our neighbors day-to-day,” Roetker commented, “was one of the main reasons I took the job.  I love agriculture and really enjoy helping the people that make it all happen.”

Alva Host Grower Seed Meeting

37 local farmers and agronomy staff discuss sesame, soybean and forages

Alva, OK, January 4, 2018 – As 2018 begins, the agriculture world awaits to see what trends will happen in the new year. With unstable wheat prices and unpredictable weather patterns, our local industry likes to evaluate different kind of crops and forages to see what will grow and be profitable.
On January 4, 2018, The Farmers Cooperative Association in Alva hosted a Grower Seed Meeting at Baker’s Barn just north of Alva. The 37 local farmers and agronomy staff enjoyed a steak dinner with all the fixings as they listened to experts in the seed industry discuss the movements taking place with new regulations, weed resistance and newer genetics. Representatives from Winfield/United and Sesaco gave presentations and answered questions regarding their respective fields.
John Stotts, Master Agronomy Advisor in Oklahoma and Texas, with Winfield/United began the program with discussion on the new regulations involving Dicamba tolerant soybeans. Stotts explained which chemicals could be used when and how depending on maturity of sensitive crops and weather. “One big thing we are stressing with the new chemicals is using them on the correct maturity of the weed,” Stotts explained, “continuing to spray more mature weeds will eventually lead to more resistance and a bigger problem.” He then moved to soybean seed varieties, forages and cotton; discussing which ones perform the best for our area.  During Stotts presentation, Greg Birdwell, Oklahoma District Seed Manager, also with Winfield/United answered questions pertaining to specific seeds and how they grow and mature in our area.
Jared Johnson, Field Tech Representative, with Sesaco followed with a very informative discussion on the growth of the sesame seed industry. Johnson explained the life cycle and growth statistics of the seed from planting to harvest. The discussion also covered the hardiness of the plant and how it is very drought tolerant, making it a great rotation or second crop choice for this area. “Sesame can be grown in so many conditions, planted with just about any planter and harvested with any color machine with many headers,” stated Johnson, “if you have a question, I’m sure I have a guy who has tried it.” He finished his presentation with discussion of a sample budget and how the numbers work out to a profit every time.
Customers and staff took in all the information and stayed after to discuss their particular situations with the three experts. “This meeting was very informative,” commented long-time Co-op member, Kevin Thiesing, “getting the information on the enforcement of the Dicamba regulations and applying the fungicide to alfalfa were definitely eye-openers for me.” With the interest created, a discussion was had about hosting an application clinic in the spring for sesame growers, and looking more in-depth at sprayer nozzle options to be compliant with regulations.

Co-op Hires Lowe as Assistant Production Manager

Peterson welcomes changes at the Elevator

Alva, OK, January 2, 2018 -  The Farmers Cooperative Association proudly announces the recent hire of Preston Lowe, who will join the Co-op team as Assistant Production Manager, under Miles Peterson. “I feel that Preston’s cool and collected personality is exactly what we need to add to the management team at FCA,” stated Peterson. “I am excited to see him grow in this roll and bring a new level of excitement to the job.” Lowe began this endeavor on January 2.
Lowe joins the team after completing a year-long management training program with Triangle Insurance Company, out of Enid, OK. The program selects qualified candidates to do a rotation of different cooperatives around the state, learning the different types of crops and how each company handles the pressures of harvest, employment, and other day-to-day situations that arise. Lowe was placed in Burlington, Walters, and Pond Creek gaining valuable information and experience that he will bring to the Cooperative in Alva.
Lowe grew up in a farming and ranching family in Holly, CO, working alongside his father and grandfather. After high school, he made the choice to attend NWOSU in Alva, returning to his grand-parents’ home town. He graduated in 2015, working for Bouziden and Sons. “Agriculture was a huge part of my life, and returning to my roots was not hard,” Lowe commented, “during and after the management training program I knew I wanted to stay in Alva and I wanted to work in the co-op system. When the opportunity presented itself with the elevator I was excited to do what I loved where I wanted to be, so I guess you can say grain picked me.”
Peterson will continue to be the Production Manager and Elevator Superintendent, training Lowe about the ins and outs of how The Farmers Cooperative Association handles the grain from storage to harvest, passing on years of knowledge.


Hatfield Newest Hunter Wheel Alignment Tech in Alva

Co-op now has three certified alignment techs

Alva, OK, December 21, 2017 – On December 11-13, 2017, James Hatfield, of the Farmers Cooperative Association Ampride Tire Center, attended the Hunter Fundamentals of Alignment course in Oklahoma City. At the completion of the course Hatfield passed the industry’s ASE A4 alignment exam, recognizing him as an accredited wheel alignment technician with Hunter Engineering Company out of Brighton, MO.
The three-day, 24-hour, training session covered courses in alignment theory, practical application and diagnostic techniques including adjustment methods for light duty vehicles and basic tire/wheel balancing theory. There was an overview of suspension and steering systems outlining detailed instructions on proper inspection procedures. The classes consisted of a combination of classroom and hands-on shop training.
Hatfield joins Jef Bush, head alignment tech, and Henry Moore, brake tech, as the third trained alignment tech at the Tire Center. Tire Center Manager, Kevin Pingelton, was very excited with Hatfield’s performance. “James has really stepped up the last couple of months providing front-end and alignment service to our customers when Jef was recuperating from a back injury,” stated Pingelton.  “He has proven to be a valued member of our team, and the certificate just reinforces that he is going to continue to be an important piece of the ever-changing auto repair field, and we are lucky to have him.”
Hatfield joined the Co-op team at the Tire Center in February of this year as an oil change tech. He was an Alva High School graduate and completed courses at NW Technology Center prior to employment. He and his wife, Mandie, a clerk at the Co-op Farm Supply Store, make their home in Alva with their daughter, Tori.


Parsons and Powers celebrate 77 combined years of service

Co-op to host retirement party.

Alva, OK, December 12, 2017:  After 49 and 28 years, respectively, working devotedly as valued team members of Farmers Cooperative Association of Alva, Carl Parsons and Carol Powers, both of Alva, are set to retire on December 31, 2017. Carl Parsons began his career in February of 1968 after serving his country in the Army. Parsons held many positions over his 49-year career, most of which required him to know a little about everything. From the service station, the fuel truck, fertilizer department, to finally settling down in the elevator, Parsons has been a staple for many of the Co-op customers. “Getting to meet all the people over the years, and helping customers with all their needs, is what I enjoyed the most, and will miss,” reminisced Parsons. “If there was a job needed done, everyone knew they could count on me, I even did a stint as the resident painter, making my mark on the main office, hardware store, and the anhydrous tanks.” Carl plans to spend more time with his wife, Carol, and enjoy taking lots and lots of photographs. He has two daughters, Leslie and Donna. Carol Powers joined the Co-op family on October 30, 1989, one day after her birthday, not knowing she would spend 27 more with her customers at the Farm Supply Store. Powers has been the right-hand gal for the managers at the store, helping customers, stocking freight, and making sure the amazing flowers she orders are very well taken care of. “So many moments I won’t forget, but the most memorable was when a customer drove his truck through the front windows of the store,” remembered Powers. “It worked out to add more shelf space in the store, but it was definitely shocking.” Carol plans to try and sell her many antiques and collectibles she has gathered over the years, and spend more time with Victor, her husband. Both employees will be missed greatly by customers and co-workers alike. “Dedication and hard work is not something you find regularly anymore, Carol and Carl had both and will be sorely missed in our organization and the working community in Alva,” noted Ronnie Truelock, General Manager of the Farmers Cooperative Association in Alva.

A farewell party will be held from 2 – 4 P.M. on December 15 at the Runnymede, 402 4th street in Alva. All friends, coworkers and well-wishers are welcome to attend and enjoy cake and punch.


Pingelton Joins Co-op Family

Hamil gets new role and responsibilities.

Alva, OK, September 25, 2017:  The Farmers Cooperative Association is excited to announce the recent hire of Kevin Pingelton, who will join the Co-op team as manager of the Ampride Tire Center. General Manager Ronnie Truelock said, “Asking Kevin to join the talented team we have was a logical decision, his addition will help strengthen our ability to better serve our members and customers. His customer service skills and sales background give us the ability to move Tasha Hamil into a business relations position that will really project us forward and give us a better way to communicate with our customers to help us grow throughout all our businesses.” The change took effect on September 25.
Pingelton comes to the Co-op from Western Equipment with six years of customer service and ag sales experience. There he excelled in his field exceeding customer expectations and providing second to none service. Prior to that, Kevin was a valuable member of FSA office here in Alva helping local farmers navigate government ag programs. This background will help Pingelton make an easy transition into his new position. Kevin is married to Brooke Pingelton, a debit card accounts specialist with Alva State Bank, they have two sons, Gunner and Coy.
“When making this decision, I felt the Co-op had a lot of great qualities to offer employees and customers.” Pingelton said, “My plan is to continue to grow the customer base and provide quality services to our customers.”
Tasha Hamil will move to sales and business relations, this position will have her splitting her time among all departments in the Co-op, helping increase sales and customer awareness of everything the Co-op offers. “I am very excited to be able to help all the managers grow our company through great marketing campaigns and on the farm customer service.” Hamil said, “I am a firm believer in our mission statement of being the preferred supplier of quality goods and services, and being able to bring that philosophy out to the customer base is just one of the many reasons why I am glad I work for the Co-op.”