Arkansan Dow Brantley Elected Chairman of USA Rice Federation

Dow Brantley, chairman of the Arkansas Rice Federation, has been elected chairman of the USA Rice Federation.

The board of the USA Rice Federation took the action Monday during annual meetings in Dallas.

Brantley, who also operates a 10,000-acre farm in Lonoke County, is chairman of the Arkansas Rice Producers Group and the Lonoke County Farm Bureau and was named to Arkansas Business' most recent 40 Under 40 class, will assume the two-year post on Aug. 1. He takes over for Mark Denman, a Texas rice miller who has been chairman of the group since 2012.

"Dow is going to make a great chairman," Denman said in a statement released Tuesday by the USA Rice Federation. "He is an important producer in the number one rice producing state in the country, and has already begun to make his mark on the industry as the chairman of the Arkansas Rice Federation and the Arkansas Rice Farmers and through his service on several USA Rice committees and task groups."

"Mark Denman guided our industry through some trying times — the farm bill, trade and marketing challenges, and other critical issues," Brantley said in the statement. "He was also at the helm during our recent strategic planning that resulted in a solid viability plan for the industry and the organization.  He served all segments of the industry with distinction, and I'm looking forward to keeping us moving in that right direction."

About 35 percent of Brantley's acreage is in rice. In addition to serving on several USA and Arkansas Rice committees, Brantley is a graduate of the Rice Leadership Development Program.