Created in collaboration with North Dakota State University,
exclusively for cooperative leaders

From the classroom to the co-op:
Lessons in long-term growth

One of the most important lessons a leader can learn is how to recognize and capitalize on opportunity. Leading for Results brings you a unique opportunity to develop and enhance the skills needed to plan and achieve long-term growth.

This exciting new course, brought to you by the Cooperative Leadership Academy in collaboration with North Dakota State University, is specifically designed to help you develop and enhance the skills and capabilities needed to plan and achieve long-term growth for your co-op.

In this six-month course you’ll learn skills that are proven essentials to building a successful future, including:

  • Strategic planning and execution
  • Leadership and communication skills
  • Finance essentials
  • Governance
  • Risk management

Classes start in July.

Enroll now through May 28, 2018


You’ll gain an overview of financial statements and ratios – including learning about capital budgeting and NPV finance and how to apply them in valuing a business unit and forecasting financial statements. You’ll also gain an understanding of the use of debt and equity, and learn how to define and measure financial risk.

Agribusiness Strategy

Get insights into how changes in agriculture are creating change in the structure of the agriculture marketing industry. Learn how factors such as technology, precision ag, inputs (including fertilizer), foreign competition and logistics can affect your business, plus strategies to manage for success in a dynamic market.


Learn the secrets of authentic leadership: capabilities and best practices. Gain the skills needed to create a personal leadership plan, and learn how to be a leader in the broader context, including friendly consulting, presentation skills, communicating a value proposition, complex negotiation, and conflict resolution.


Why are some industries more profitable than others? How can yours be among the most successful? Learn strategic management and analysis; how to create PESTL and SWOT frameworks; how to identify your core competencies; best practices for M&A and restructuring, and how to create strategies for customer retention.

Cooperative Organizations

Cooperatives have significantly different financial structures than most businesses. Discover how to: manage for growth by using income allocation and different types of redemption strategies; manage cooperative equity generation, and measure member value creation, based on the top challenges for co-op business models.


Risk is pervasive in agriculture and energy. There are risks related to market functions including trading and logistics, as well as financial risks and project risks. This session will explore risks related to cooperatives and management, including ways to interpret, measure and mitigate risk.

Your success is critical, and Leading for Results is designed for a diverse variety of learning styles, including classroom, virtual and one-to-one interaction.

Online, in-person and video content
Collaboration and networking
Small classes for one-to-one interaction
Tools to put learning into action


Ed Schafer

Instructor for: Ag Leadership

View bio

Edward Thomas "Ed" Schafer is a business leader who was the 30th Governor of North Dakota from 1992-2000. Shafer also served as the 29th United States Secretary of Agriculture from 2008-2009, appointed by President George W. Bush. He was appointed as the interim president of the University of North Dakota, serving from January to June 2016.

Frayne Olson

Instructor for: Cooperative Organizations, Governance

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Dr. Frayne Olson is the crop economist/marketing specialist with the North Dakota State University Extension Service and director of the Quentin Burdick Center for Cooperatives. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Missouri in Agricultural Economics, and his M.S. and B.S. in Agricultural Economics from North Dakota State University. Dr. Olson conducts educational programs and research in evaluating crop marketing strategies, crop outlook and price analysis, and the economics of crop contracting. As director of the Center for Cooperatives, he teaches a senior-level course on cooperative business management and coordinates the center’s research and outreach activities. 

Ryan Larsen

Instructor for: Finance, Risk

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Dr. Ryan Larsen is an assistant professor and extension economist in the Department of Applied Economics at Utah State University. He previously worked at North Dakota State University specializing in agricultural finance. He teaches classes on agricultural finance, farm management, real estate, and risk analysis. Dr. Larsen has worked with agricultural lenders throughout the United States developing training programs and providing agricultural outlook information.

Joshua E. Marineau

Instructor for: Communication, Leadership

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Dr. Joshua E. Marineau is an assistant professor of management at North Dakota State University’s College of Business. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics. Dr. Marineau's primary teaching areas are organizational behavior and negotiations. His research interests include the study of power, leadership, entrepreneurship, and interpersonal conflict from a social network perspective.

Dave Ripplinger

Instructor for: Energy and Agricultural Inputs

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Dr. David Ripplinger is an assistant professor in the Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics at North Dakota State University and a bioenergy/bioproducts specialist with NDSU Extension. In these roles, he conducts research and provides support to the agriculture and energy industries. Dr. Ripplinger is currently chair of the National Extension Energy Initiative and a past president of the Transportation Research Forum.

William Wilson

Instructor for: Ag Firm Strategy, Grain Marketing and Logistics, Risk
CHS Program Role: Project Leader

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Dr. William W. Wilson (Ph.D., University of Manitoba) has been a professor at North Dakota State University in Agribusiness and Applied Economics since 1980. He has also taken periodic sabbaticals at Stanford University, taught at Purdue University, and is a visiting scholar at Melbourne University. Recently, he was named as a University Distinguished Professor at NDSU. In 2016, Dr. Wilson was named the CHS Chair in Risk Management and Trading at NDSU. His focus is risk and strategy applied to agriculture and agribusiness with a particular focus on procurement, transportation and logistics, international marketing and competition. He teaches classes in commodity trading, risk and agribusiness Strategy. Dr. Wilson was responsible for creating the NDSU Commodity Trading Room, a state-of-the-art facility for teaching and research in commodity marketing, logistics and trading.

Mike Krush

Instructor for: Communication, Ag Sales and Marketing Management

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Dr. Mike Krush, Ph.D. (University of Nebraska-Lincoln) serves as an associate professor at North Dakota State University. Dr. Krush is director of NDSU’s nationally recognized Center for Professional Selling & Sales Technology, which he championed. During his academic career, he has taught undergraduate and graduate students marketing strategy and sales at three universities. Prior to his academic career, Dr. Krush served in marketing as a brand manager in a Fortune 500 company, responsible for strategic marketing of a $600 million brand. He has consulted with startup firms, conducted marketing in the financial services domain, and written a book on career preparation. 

Derek Lehmberg

Instructor for: Communication, Strategy
CHS Program Role: Course Manager

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Dr. Derek Lehmberg, associate professor of management and MBA program director at NDSU, holds a Ph.D. from Western University Canada, an MBA from INSEAD (France), and an M.S. in agricultural economics from Kobe University (Japan). His research area primarily examines strategic management in international contexts. Prior to entering academia, Dr. Lehmberg was a management consultant with IBM, PWC Consulting, and Japan Management Association Consulting, practicing in the areas of strategy and operations.

William Nganje

Instructor for: Ag Leadership
CHS Program Role: Project Leader

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Dr. Nganje is chair and professor for the Agribusiness and Applied Economics Department, NDSU. Prior to joining NDSU, he was on the faculty of Arizona State University. Dr. Nganje served in leadership roles on the Western Extension and Research Activity Committee on Agribusiness, and for the AAEA-Food Safety and Nutrition group. He holds a number of awards for his research publications and teaching. Dr. Nganje is a Food Systems Leadership Institute (FSLI) fellow.

Erik Hanson

Instructor for: Ag Leadership

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Dr. Erik Hanson is an assistant professor in North Dakota State University's Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics. He teaches courses on agribusiness management and agricultural finance. Dr. Hanson completed his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota in 2016. His doctoral research focused on occupational safety at agricultural cooperatives. Prior to that, he completed a master’s degree at the University of Illinois (2013) and a bachelor’s degree at Minnesota State University Moorhead (2011).

Leading for Results

Six-month program tuition: $12,500 per person
  • MBA-equivalent courses tailored to agribusiness and the cooperative system
  • A combination of two four-day sessions at NDSU in Fargo, N.D., and weekly virtual sessions
  • Hands-on lessons at NDSU’s state-of-the-art Commodity Trading Room, the premier commodity trading room in the nation
  • Personalized assessment of your skills to better identify your strengths and opportunities
  • Registration (including tuition, hotel and meals) for you and a guest to another valuable leadership development conference – the 2019 CHS Cooperative Leadership Development Conference, to be held March 4-6 at the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas, which will include a graduation ceremony for Leading for Results participants

Cancellation policy:

The registration fee is non-refundable and you will be required to provide a credit card at the time of registration.


Contact us at 651-355-4503 or email