ADM sees turnover in grain segment leadership

By Aerin Einstein-Curtis

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/masterzphotois
© GettyImages/masterzphotois

Related tags Adm staffing company transition

Archer Daniels Midland is set to have a new head of its North American grains business.

Wesley Uhlmeyer is stepping down as the president of the Illinois-based company’s grain business for personal reasons, a company spokesperson confirmed for us. He has filled that position since 2016 and been with the company for 20 years.

Chris Boerm will be stepping in to lead the grain business, Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) said. Boerm previously ran ADM grain and currently leads transportation.

Going forward he will be the president of North America grain and transportation and lead both groups, the company said. The change in oversight is anticipated to improve the alignment of ADM’s efforts in both segments.  

Boerm initially was named the president of the grain business in 2014 and managed the company’s US and export grain businesses, the grain merchandising activities and destination marketing, according to company information.

He started working with ADM in 1991 and served as the vice president of grain prior to heading the business, according to company information. He also has been an advisor to the office of the chairman, vice president and general manager of the company’s eastern grain and corn processing origination and as a senior merchandising manager for corn processing.  

Staffing and changes at ADM

The turnover in staffing in ADM’s grain business segment is not the only part of the company potentially facing changes.

The company announced​ earlier this month that it was offering a voluntary early retirement window for specific employees working with some of the company’s the US and Canada operations. The set of actions is set to happen by June 30.

The early retirement option is one of a series of actions the company is taking to “enhance our organizational agility, maximize productivity, strengthen service to internal and external customers, and accelerate growth,”​ a company spokesperson told us at that time.

ADM also is working to address “planned synergies”​ from its acquisitions and is realigning its organization globally, the spokesperson said. The steam-lining process is anticipated to include increased standardization of processes, implementation of new technology and the eliminations of “overlap in roles and responsibilities.”

Some individual positions also may be eliminated as specific areas within the company are restructured, the spokesperson said. However, when possible, attempts will be made to reduce individual effects and provide alternative options for employees.

The company, as of December 31, had about 31,600 full-time employees.

Other industry leadership shifts

ADM also is not the only member of the ABCD group of grain handling companies to see a shift in leadership for business segments in April.

Cargill reported​ on April 4 that it was shifting several employees to cover the upcoming retirement of GJ van den Akker.

Akker had been the enterprise lead for the Minnesota-based agri-giant’s global agricultural supply chain. However, he will continue to be a member of the company’s executive team and lead select projects.

Starting in June, the position with the global supply chain will be filled by Joe Stone, who is currently the enterprise lead for Cargill Animal Nutrition.

David Webster has been tapped to fill Stone, the company said. Webster has worked with several of Cargill’s departments including edible oils and animal nutrition.

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