Agricultural Retailers Association Kicks Off First Virtual ARA Conference & Expo

The Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) has convened its 2020 ARA Conference & Expo as a virtual event for the first time, featuring keynote speakers, engaging workshops, a 3D Expo Hall, and networking opportunities.

“While the program looks much different this year, it is expected to be no less educational than what we’ve come to expect at our previous in-person events. In a year full of many unexpected challenges, connecting to gain knowledge and share lessons learned with ag retail professionals from across the country is more important now than ever before.”

said ARA Chairman Rod Wells with GROWMARK, Inc.

Tuesday’s events included the debut of the 3D Expo Hall and the networking lounge as well as the opening general session featuring the ARA President’s Report from Daren Coppock and keynote speaker Kaihan Krippendorff. Following the opening session, The Scoop’s Margy Eckelkamp moderated a panel focused on insights showing the farmer of the future with Brett Sciotto and Scott Caine with Aimpoint Research.

“Attendees have a lot to learn from the first day of sessions, from how they can harness knowledge about shifts in industry trends caused by COVID-19 to build a successful blueprint for their future, to how they can empower employees to take action on innovative growth ideas,”

said ARA President and CEO Daren Coppock.

Krippendorff took a deeper dive into his keynote message on The Outthinker Process in an interactive workshop designed to help individuals and teamed at all levels to increase their strategic and innovative thinking capability.

Throughout the day, attendees had several networking opportunities including the New Member/First-Time Attendee Welcome in the networking lounge as well as the chance to be the grand prize winner of trivia in the Expo Hall.

Earlier in the week, the ARA Board of Directors gathered for its quarterly meeting. The agenda included the review of regular business operations of the organization and opportunities to strengthen and create efficiencies.

Coppock said:

“As the only national association representing the interests of agricultural retailers in Washington, D.C., ARA and its Board of Directors are always seeking avenues to strengthen the voice of the ag retailer. And the changes in leadership from this year’s election make it more important than ever to remain or become involved at a grassroots level.”