AgDM Newsletter August, 2008

Chad HartHart named as new grain marketing economist at Iowa State University

When it comes to information about the grain markets, there’s a new kid on the block at Iowa State University. Beginning Aug. 1, Chad Hart will pick up many of the responsibilities of Robert Wisner, who provided grain marketing information and advice to Iowa producers for more than 40 years before his retirement in December 2007.

Hart has been an agricultural economist with Iowa State’s Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD). He arrived at CARD in 1991 as a graduate student and joined the staff in 1999.

In this new position, Hart will be an assistant professor of economics in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. He also will add the title of grain marketing economist to his business card. Hart’s task will be to analyze grain, forage, and energy crop markets and their interaction with the rest of the economy, then coordinate with extension specialists to communicate that information to farmers across the state.

“I’m definitely looking forward to this,” Hart said. “This is an exciting time because we are having high grain prices due to a variety of factors, such as the weather, strong global demand, and the build-up of a bioeconomy.”

Hart served as head of CARD’s Biorenewables Policy division for the past year. He also has been the U.S. Policy and Insurance Analyst with the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) at Iowa State. In this capacity, he was responsible for directing econometric and modeling efforts for the crop insurance component of the FAPRI modeling system. He also maintained CARD’s Loan Deficiency Payment interactive Web site.

“Most of my time at CARD has been spent looking at issues for politicians,” Hart said. “Now I’ll be looking at those same issues, but for farmers. That gives me a completely different audience than before.”

Hart received a bachelor’s degree in economics with minors in mathematics, history, and astronomy from Southwest Missouri State University in 1991. He received a doctorate in economics and statistics in 1999 from Iowa State.

In 2007, Hart received both the Iowa State University Regents Award for Staff Excellence and the Iowa State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Professional and Scientific Award for Achievement.