Overview

The Southwestern Fertilizer Conference (SWFC) is an IRS-designated 501(c)(6) non-profit trade association established in 1925, originally as a fertilizer grade hearing for Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. With the introduction of dealer blending and liquid fertilizer in the 50’s, the emphasis on the grade hearing aspect of the conference waned. Industry, however, continued to use the conference as an opportunity to maintain business relationships. It kept its regional emphasis until the 1980’s, when other geographic interests gained notice. Attendance grew rapidly each year after that, mostly from word-of-mouth promotion. You could say that “everyone is there because everyone is there.

Hosted by the association, the annual conference, “The Southwest” as it is often referred to within the industry, has allowed it to evolve into a meeting of great prominence for the fertilizer industry, and is one of the largest gatherings of professionals involved in the fertilizer industry in the world. This conference attracts upper-level management and sales personnel representing fertilizer manufacturers, distributors, brokers and dealers. The SWFC is governed by volunteer leaders and an Executive Committee who are elected by the membership annually. Their duties are guided by the efforts of the Planning Committee. Any participant of the SWFC is welcome to volunteer to participate – contact the association office for more details.

Mission
The established purpose of the meeting is educational. Top-notch industry speakers present at each conference. The areas generally addressed are fertilizer and agricultural economy, governmental affairs issues directly impacting the industry, a prominent industry CEO, and the primary issue affecting the industry at the time. However, networking is probably considered the main attraction for most of the attendees.

The SWFC’s success allows it to provide substantial scholarships, grants and research funding for the industry. To date, the association has paid out over $170,000 in donations to charitable organizations that serve or support the agriculture community.

About the Fertilizer Industry
America’s fertilizer businesses are part of a multi-billion dollar industry that provides farmers with the nutrients necessary for them to produce crops to meet the world's demand for food, feed, fiber and fuel. These nutrients include phosphorus, nitrogen and other essential elements that promote the health and sustainability of the soil.

Philanthropy
Each year, the success of the Southwestern Fertilizer Conference enables the association to contribute substantial scholarships, grants and research funding to agriculture- and food-related charitable organizations. To date, the association has paid out over $215,000 in donations to organizations that have included the Nutrients for Life Foundation and the Fluid Fertilizer Foundation, among others. Contact the SWFC office (512-259-2118) for more information.

Leadership

2017 Executive Committee

  • Executive Committee Chairman
    Brooke McMullin, International Raw Materials, Philadelphia PA

  • Immediate Past Executive Committee Chairman
    Doug Stevens, Equalizer Inc., Waco TX

  • 2nd Immediate Past Executive
    Frank Edwards, United Services Assn, Urbandale IA

  • 3rd Immediate Past Executive Committee Chairman
    Howard West, Simplot Growers Solutions, Hempstead TX

  •  4th Immediate Past Executive Committee Chairman
    Toby Hlavinka, American Plant Food Corp., Galena Park TX

  •  Treasurer
    Scott Piercy, Poole Chemical Co., Inc., Lubbock TX

  • Finance Committee Member
    David Fritzsche, CF Industries, Deerfield IL

  • Finance Committee Member
    Don Barry, AM-AG LLC, Edinburg TX

  • Local Arrangements Committee
    Ron Garner, Martin Resources, Kilgore TX

  • General Conference Chairman
    Bart Hunt, PotashCorp, Shawnee KS

  • Executive Director
    Pat Miller, SWFC, Cedar Park TX

  • Program Committee Chairman (ex officio)
    Larry Jayroe, ADM, Forrest City AR

2018 Committee Chairs

Program Committee
Selects, contacts and arranges for conference speakers at the Annual Conference.

Chair - Larry Jayroe, ADM, Forrest City AR


Executive Spouse
Responsible for planning the Spouse Program held during the Annual Convention. Composed ONLY of spouses of members of the current Executive Committee.


Finance
This is a permanent committee, per the bylaws. Manages all the financial affairs for the association, including bill payments and budgets.

Chair – Scott Piercy, Poole Chemical Co., Lubbock TX


Hall of Fame
Determines the criteria and selection(s) for the annual Hall of Fame Awards, which is a program designed to recognize those individuals that have significantly affected the fertilizer industry, both past and present.

Chair - David Fritzsche, CF Industries, Deerfield IL


Local Arrangements
Assists the Executive Director in planning the hotel functions for the Annual Convention and makes site selection recommendations for future conferences to the Executive Committee.

Chair - Ron Garner, Martin Resources, Kilgore TX


Nominating
This is a permanent committee, per the bylaws. Suggests a nomination for the Program Committee Chair, to be reviewed and approved by the Executive Committee when meeting during the Planning Committee Meeting and to be voted upon at the Annual Business meeting during the Annual Conference.

Chair – Toby Hlavinka, American Plant Food Corp., Galena Park TX


Philanthropy
Makes recommendations to the Executive Committee for consideration to fund industry-oriented programs.

Chair - Howard West, Simplot Grower Solutions, Hempstead TX


Resolutions
Researches, prepares and reports the necrology resolutions to the general membership during the Annual Conference luncheon.

Chair - Howard West, Simplot Growers Solutions, Hempstead TX


Scholarship
Establishes the criteria for the scholarship program and selects the recipients, per the guidelines established by the Executive Committee.

Chair - Gayle Rickard, Tyler TX


Suite/Meeting Room
Makes suite and meeting room assignments for the Annual Conference based on the company's past conference participation and involvement.

Chair - Doug Stevens, Equalizer, Waco TX


Visionary Committee
Offers suggestions to the Executive Committee to guide the future of the organization. Only past members of the Executive Committee may serve on this committee.

Chair – Bob Stone, Occidental Chemical Co., Dallas TX


Young & New Professionals
Assists the Executive Director in planning and promoting an event to encourage networking among the professional women participating in the conference. The committee also assists the Program Committee.

Chair - Linda Hlavinka, Helena Chemical Company, East Bernard TX


Organizational Policies

Antitrust Compliance Policy

This Guide to Antitrust Compliance is designed to help SWFC members comply with state and federal antitrust laws when participating in SWFC meetings or activities.

Privacy Policy

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Changes to our Privacy Policy

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Contacting Us

If there are any questions regarding this privacy policy you may contact us using the information below.

PO Box 339
Cedar Park, Texas 78630
USA
512-259-2118