Michael Edgar, Yuma, Ariz., is the new board chairman of U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) based in Arlington, Va.

Edgar accepted the chairman's gavel from outgoing chairman and wheat producer Ron Suppes of Kansas during the USW's annual meeting in July in Kansas City, Mo. Edgar will serve a one-year term as chairman.

Edgar is the general manager of Barkley Seeds Inc. A native of California's Imperial Valley, Edgar grew up on a farming operation near El Centro that produced wheat, cotton, alfalfa and fed cattle. He earned an associate degree in business at the local community college.

Edgar entered the grain business in 1979 and has engaged in all facets of the business during his career while emphasizing wheat. These have included: trading in cash and futures markets; contracting grain production for domestic and export markets; developing and servicing export markets; contracting for truck, rail and ocean transportation; management of grain variety breeding programs; and managing grain seed businesses.

Edgar joined Barkley Seed in 1988 and was named general manager in 1995. The company operates facilities in central and western Arizona and in the Imperial and Central valleys of California. Barkley Seed produces and sells certified seed of proprietary varieties of Desert Durum wheat, hard red wheat, and barley, and specializes in contracting production of identity preserved grain for domestic and export markets.

A member of the Arizona Grain Research and Promotion Council and the California Wheat Commission, Edgar was recently elected chairman of the U.S. Wheat Association. He also serves on the board of directors of WestBred, LLC and is past president of the Seed Trade Association of Arizona.

USW is the industry's export market development organization funded by America's wheat producers and through cost-share funding provided by USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service.