Our team contains a diverse array of experts that provides a breadth of knowledge that is unmached in organizations our size. This allows us to all share our insight on complex issues by not getting lost in the bloat of corporate enviorments.
John Duff works as a consultant for Elite Ag, where he advises clients on a broad range of farm management issues. His primary areas of focus include farm policy, crop budgeting and analytics used to aid in strategic planning.
In addition to serving as a consultant for Elite Ag, John is also the Strategic Business Director for National Sorghum Producers, where he provides analysis of farm policy and crop insurance issues. Most notably, his recent work in conjunction with FSA resulted in higher sorghum ARC yields in West Texas. This made farm bill decision-making in this area easier and will positively contribute to the region's farm safety net.
He also has a role promoting and marketing grain sorghum for the Sorghum Checkoff. A recognized expert on the sorghum industry, John is frequently featured on farm radio and TV stations such as KGNC, KFLP and RFDTV as well as in Sorghum Grower magazine and other print publications. His unique perspective on policy and markets allows him to provide added value to Elite Ag customers.
John grew up southeast of Levelland, Texas, on a cotton and grain sorghum farm. In May 2012 he graduated summa cum laude from Texas Tech University with a Bachelor of Science in Agribusiness, and he was recognized for maintaining a 4.0 GPA. He also completed five internships during his time at Tech.
In addition to serving as a consultant for Elite Ag, Chris Cogburn is the manager of Sustainable Crop Insurance Services, LP (SCIS) and has been with SCIS since its founding in 2006. Chris previously served as the Strategic Business Director for the National Sorghum Producers from 2006 – 2015, where he worked on farm policy as well as regulatory matters. He developed the farm level models used by NSP for decision making during work on the 2008 and 2014 Farm Bills. Crop insurance is a key part of the 2014 Farm Bill and his knowledge of its interaction with farm policy remains critical and is beneficial to Elite Ag clients.
Chris's extensive regulatory work includes projects with the Farm Service Agency (FSA), Risk Management Agency (RMA), and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). He worked with FSA on the 2008 Farm Bill’s implementation of SURE and its treatment of “ghost crop” sorghum behind failed cotton and wheat. His RMA work has included the implementation of the sorghum crop insurance election methodology in the 2008 Farm Bill as well as SCO implementation in the 2014 Farm Bill. Chris also worked with RMA in expanding the silage sorghum pilot to include Texas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico; he is currently working on the expansion of the annual forage program. He has also worked with RMA regional offices in Oklahoma City, Topeka, Raleigh, and Valdosta on grain sorghum planting dates. Chris’ EPA regulatory work has included reregistration of propazine as well as renewable fuels pathways for grain sorghum and biomass sorghum.
Chris farmed in the Happy and Dumas, Texas, areas for almost two decades. This experience has made him a valuable resource to Elite Ag customers. His hands-on knowledge in the area of farm management is featured in a monthly column in Kansas Farmer magazine, Nebraska Farmer magazine and the Missouri Ruralist.
Chris is a summa cum laude graduate of Texas Tech University where he received a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural and Applied Economics. He is married to Amy, and they have two sons, Tucker and Logan.
Shelley Heinrich is a consultant for Elite Ag, advising clients on diverse issues related to accounting and farm financial planning. In addition to her work with Elite Ag, Shelley serves as Development Director for National Sorghum Producers. In this role she leads sorghum industry relations efforts, giving her unparalleled insight into the health and direction of the U.S. farm economy.
Shelley and her husband Burt produce cotton and sorghum on an industry-leading farm south of Lubbock, Texas. Shelley is active in the operation, providing financial management and oversight in the areas of accounting, marketing and strategic planning. Prior to expanding her role on the farm she spent 25 years in the commercial banking industry, where she focused on corporate acquisitions. This extensive experience in finance enables Shelley to provide unparalleled advising on financial management to Elite Ag customers.
Shelley is an active part of her local agricultural community, serving on the board of the Bayer Museum of Agriculture. In addition to local involvement, Shelley is a graduate of the Texas Agricultural Lifetime Leadership program and was named America’s Farmers Southwest Region Mom of the Year in 2015. Shelley and Burt have four children, Heath, Lauren, Reagan and Aubry.
Ian Hoeffner serves as a data analyst for Elite Ag, where he provides advice and technical services in a variety of areas related to data processing and management. Ian is also Information Director for National Sorghum Producers.
Prior to his work for Elite Ag and the sorghum industry, Ian spent 10 years as Senior Server Administrator for NTS Communications, a telecommunications company based in Lubbock, Texas. In this capacity he transformed their server infrastructure implementing a virtual server platform with a SAN attached storage solution. During his time there he also created many different custom soltuions for managing their ADTRAN systems which lacked critical features not provided by the vendor.
Ian enjoys studying programming and information system which helps keep Elite Ag on pace to stay ahead of the game in data processing.