Kent and MayThe Cultivation Corridor Board of Directors have unanimously voted Gage A. Kent of Kent Corporation as the economic development organization’s next chairman.

Kent will be the Cultivation Corridor’s second chairman, succeeding John May of Deere & Company, who has served as the Corridor’s chairman since 2014. In addition to being a founding member of the Cultivation Corridor, Kent has significant experience in agribusiness as the CEO of Muscatine, Iowa’s Kent Corporation, which is the parent corporation to Grain Processing Corporation; Kent Nutrition Group, Inc. and Precision Foods, Inc. Kent has held numerous positions in each subsidiary throughout his nearly three-decade career with the company.

Kent also serves on the Board of Directors for Simpson College and the Iowa Business Council, and is a member and former Chair of the Board for the Iowa College Foundation and a director of Iowa State University Foundation’s Board of Governors. Kent is also a member of the Iowa Association of Business and Industry.

Regarding his recent appointment, Kent said, “I’m privileged to succeed John [May] as the Corridor’s next Chairman,” Kent said.  “His leadership of the Corridor board during the crucial early years of the organization have been integral to creating broad opportunity to scale and capitalize on our mission. The Corridor’s work to firmly establish Iowa as the pre-eminent destination for investment, talent and research in value-added agriculture is integral to the future growth of our state’s economy and role in the world.  I am excited to contribute leadership to the mission.”

John May endorsed Kent’s new role in leading the initiative into the future: “The Corridor is tremendously fortunate to have Gage as its next board leader,” he said. “His leadership of one of Iowa’s largest and most important value-added agricultural enterprises makes him an excellent choice to lead the Corridor through its next phase of growth. I can’t think of a better-qualified and more respected leader to help move the Corridor’s mission forward.”

Kent’s term as Chairman of the Board will begin July 1, 2016.